Albergo Diffuso (AD), the sustainable formula for touristic development. A project to Lario’s and Ceresio’s  Valleys. The Albergo Diffuso model (renovation of existing buildings)

The “Albergo Diffuso” also named “scattered hotel” is a new type of accommodation. It is about two or more existing buildings, like old barns, or unused homes, which may be refurbished and made more comfortable in order to achieve hotel standards. In addition,  AD projects ought to include a proposal for the redevelopment of the surrounding area through proper planning methods. 
The Albergo Diffuso project is divided into:

–       A proposed renovation of existing buildings, accompanied by

–       A proposed redevelopment and revitalization planning.

Sustainable tourism thesis 2 - Lake Como - Gnallo renovation work in progress

The first part allows to obtain two advantages:

1. A structure that is not newly built, but recovered from existing buildings with attention to the architectural detail such as the originality of the materials as well as the design. Furthermore, the risk of excessive overbuilding, which may cause destruction of natural habitats and biospheres, can easily be avoided. This particular point helps preventing the cultural landscape as well as developing sustainable tourism in this area.

Sustainable tourism, as defined by the International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS), refers to an activity level that can be maintained over the long term, because it produces a net benefit for the social environment, economy, natural and cultural area in which it takes place.

In other words, sustainable tourism

–       allows the social and economic development of the residential community (without intermediaries who take a high percentage of the profits let alone the whole generated income);

–       does neither destroy nor harm the environment, rather protecting it (usually, the environment is the first victim in touristic areas);

–       includes planning, organizing and managing the touristic behavior and movements of an area

2. It helps to solve the problem of hostility towards tourism because:

–       the population may be feeling more involved by the overall certainty of having a say of what is going to happen in this project, the buildings that make the AD may be the property of different people;

–       Tourists who generally use this type of structure, like to be temporarily involved in the local community in order to learn about culture, traditions and lifestyles. The opportunity of plunging into a different world is searched for by many tourists.

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