Our History

From Matilde di Canossa to Nowadays

MATILDE DI CANOSSA

11th & 12th century

What these hills have seen over the years we can only imagine, but we are certain of a very powerful and formidable woman’s influence. One of the most important governing figures of the Italian Middle Ages, Matilde di Canossa (or Matilda of Tuscany) ruled over a vast empire ranging from Lombardy over Emilia all the way to Tuscany, with Canossa at its center. Today’s village of Roncolo, home to the Tenuta Venturini Baldini, is part of the town of Quattro Castella which takes its name from four castles deemed part of Matilda of Canossa’s defensive system.

COLOMBARA

15th century

The origins and foundations of today’s Villa Manodori, situated on the first hill of the estate and overlooking the Via Emilia, are said to date back to the early 15th century. Up until the beginning of the 19 th century, however, the locality on which it stands was called La Colombara, deriving perhaps from the once presence of an ancient dovecote tower.

VILLA MANODORI

17TH-19TH century

The villa, which dates back to 1670 and owes its present form to a 19th century renovation, passed into the Manodori family estate as a dowry property following the marriage of Giovanni Manodori, Pietro’s son, to Countess Enrica Ancini, a member of one of Emilia’s noblest families, whose ancestral city palace is now home to the offices of the Mayor of Reggio Emilia.The Manodori Galliani family established a permanent summer residence in 1922 when the old family villa in Valestra was damaged by an earthquake.

VENTURINI-BALDINI

1976

Beatrice Baldini and Carlo Venturini acquired the estate from the Marchese Giampiero Manodori Galliani and moved with their young family to live in Villa Manodori. The estate had been farmed by sharecroppers and tenant farmers, engaged in various traditional agricultural activities. While reorganising the roadways and fields and restoring the historical buildings, the family also founded the agricultural company Venturini Baldini, under whose name it operates up until present days, and started the production of organic wines, balsamic vinegars, and other farming produce.

ORGANIC CERTIFICATION

1994

With sustainability at the heart of their strategy, Venturini Baldini launched a visionary project to protect and foster the environment, focusing on quality rather than quantity. From the very beginning the estate was farmed organically, and in 1994 the winery obtained the official organic certification, shortly after legislation on organic production certification came into effect.

PRESTIA FAMILY

2015

Following years of decline at the beginning of the 21st century, Villa Manodori and its surrounding buildings fell into disrepair and the estate became overgrown and rewilded – and then, finally, in 2015 the Prestia family arrived, whose energetic drive and endless passion is to protect and revitalise this extraordinary estate. Immediately focused on relaunching the wines with the help of renowned winemaker Carlo Ferrini, the couple recognized the unique natural beauty of the estate and set the path for the creation of a top-level hospitality offering, transforming the historic buildings of the estate to become the first Wine & Balsamic Relais in Emilia.

RONCOLO 1888

2020

Following the renovation of the buildings around Villa Manodori – Dimora Ancini and Dimora Acetaia – the Wine & Balsamic Relais Roncolo 1888 opened its doors for its first guests in the summer of 2020. While the restoration of Villa Manodori with its original frescos was still ongoing, the 17th century outbuildings of the villa were renovated maintaining the historic features and furnished with a simplistic luxury of natural materials and warm color palettes.

LA LIMONAIA

2021

The restaurant “La Limonaia” opens in the converted historic greenhouse with its terrace over the green of the estate, offering a relaxed fine-dining experience ranging from traditional Emilian cuisine to innovative dishes based on the traditions and specialties of the Food Valley.

EMILIA’S FIRST WINE & BALSAMIC RELAIS

2022

Finally, after an attentive restauration carefully preserving its heritage, Villa Manodori with its gorgeous frescos and hand-painted wallpapers returned to take its place as the historic heart of the estate, making the Roncolo 1888 a luxurious hospitality offering and unique destination for visitors to Emilia and its Food and Motor Valley.

11th & 12th century

MATILDE DI CANOSSA

What these hills have seen over the years we can only imagine, but we are certain of a very powerful and formidable woman’s influence. One of the most important governing figures of the Italian Middle Ages, Matilde di Canossa (or Matilda of Tuscany) ruled over a vast empire ranging from Lombardy over Emilia all the way to Tuscany, with Canossa at its center. Today’s village of Roncolo, home to the Tenuta Venturini Baldini, is part of the town of Quattro Castella which takes its name from four castles deemed part of Matilda of Canossa’s defensive system. 

15th Century

COLOMBARA

The origins and foundations of today’s Villa Manodori, situated on the first hill of the estate and overlooking the Via Emilia, are said to date back to the early 15th century. Up until the beginning of the 19 th century, however, the locality on which it stands was called La Colombara, deriving perhaps from the once presence of an ancient dovecote tower.

17TH - 19th century

VILLA MANODORI

The villa, which dates back to 1670 and owes its present form to a 19th century renovation, passed into the Manodori family estate as a dowry property following the marriage of Giovanni Manodori, Pietro’s son, to Countess Enrica Ancini, a member of one of Emilia’s noblest families, whose ancestral city palace is now home to the offices of the Mayor of Reggio Emilia.The Manodori Galliani family established a permanent summer residence in 1922 when the old family villa in Valestra was damaged by an earthquake.

1976

VENTURINI-BALDINI

Beatrice Baldini and Carlo Venturini acquired the estate from the Marchese Giampiero Manodori Galliani and moved with their young family to live in Villa Manodori. The estate had been farmed by sharecroppers and tenant farmers, engaged in various traditional agricultural activities. While reorganising the roadways and fields and restoring the historical buildings, the family also founded the agricultural company Venturini Baldini, under whose name it operates up until present days, and started the production of organic wines, balsamic vinegars, and other farming produce.

1994

ORGANIC CERTIFICATION

With sustainability at the heart of their strategy, Venturini Baldini launched a visionary project to protect and foster the environment, focusing on quality rather than quantity. From the very beginning the estate was farmed organically, and in 1994 the winery obtained the official organic certification, shortly after legislation on organic production certification came into effect.

2015

PRESTIA FAMILY

Following years of decline at the beginning of the 21st century, Villa Manodori and its surrounding buildings fell into disrepair and the estate became overgrown and rewilded – and then, finally, in 2015 the Prestia family arrived, whose energetic drive and endless passion is to protect and revitalise this extraordinary estate. Immediately focused on relaunching the wines with the help of renowned winemaker Carlo Ferrini, the couple recognized the unique natural beauty of the estate and set the path for the creation of a top-level hospitality offering, transforming the historic buildings of the estate to become the first Wine & Balsamic Relais in Emilia.

2020

RONCOLO 1888

Following the renovation of the buildings around Villa Manodori – Dimora Ancini and Dimora Acetaia – the Wine & Balsamic Relais Roncolo 1888 opened its doors for its first guests in the summer of 2020. While the restoration of Villa Manodori with its original frescos was still ongoing, the 17th century outbuildings of the villa were renovated maintaining the historic features and furnished with a simplistic luxury of natural materials and warm color palettes.

2021

LA LIMONAIA

The restaurant “La Limonaia” opens in the converted historic greenhouse with its terrace over the green of the estate, offering a relaxed fine-dining experience ranging from traditional Emilian cuisine to innovative dishes based on the traditions and specialties of the Food Valley.

2022

EMILIA’S FIRST WINE & BALSAMIC RELAIS

Finally, after an attentive restauration carefully preserving its heritage, Villa Manodori with its gorgeous frescos and hand-painted wallpapers returned to take its place as the historic heart of the estate, making the Roncolo 1888 a luxurious hospitality offering and unique destination for visitors to Emilia and its Food and Motor Valley.

Roncolo Estate Map

Dimora Ancini

Reception/ Clubhouse

Parking

Solarium

Swimming Pool

La Limonaia

Acetaia

Parking

Villa Manodori

Entrance

Venturini Baldini

Dimora Ancini

Villa Manodori

Acetaia

La Limonaia

Swimming Pool

Parking

Solarium

Reception/ Clubhouse

Parking

Entrance

Venturini Baldini

Terre di Canossa

Canossa is probably best known for being the home to medieval ruler Countess Matilda of Tuscany, and perhaps even more for the famed Humiliation of Canossa (Gang nach Canossa) of the Holy Roman Emperor, Henry IV to Pope Gregory VII at Canossa Castle in 1077, where the Pope had been staying as the guest of Matilda, to seek absolution and the revocation of his excommunication. Today’s Terre di Canossa, the historical and geographical heart of Matilda’s fiefdom, covers the area in the Apennine hills of a formerly mighty fortified system protecting the feudal state of Countess Matilda. These lands full of historical places to visit, such as the castle of Canossa and the castle of Bianello, are at the heart of Emilia, where the Motor Valley and the Food Valley meet, with many experiences to live and remember forever.