Mandello Del Lario
Mandello del Lario was formed by the Meria river whose waters, flowing down from the Grigne Massif, carried huge masses, stones and gravel down to the lake, creating a cone-shaped deposit of sediment on which the town was built. It is known that, from the third century BC, it housed a garrison when Rome, engaged in expanding its commercial and military power to lands beyond the Alps, used Lake Como as a route towards the Settimo and Spluga Passes. In 1500, at the start of the Spanish domination of Lombardy, the Mandello fiefdom was transferred to the Sfondrati family for around three centuries. Subsequently, a process of industrialisation was triggered, in particular following construction of the coast road, inaugurated in 1832, during the period of Austrian domination, and after completion of the Lecco-Colico railway in 1894.
According to the ratio between population and production activities, industrial Mandello was already the leading town in Italy in 1951. Its economy is still sustained mainly by industry, with world famous companies such as Moto Guzzi and other important steel sector companies and a myriad of small family-run businesses operating mainly in the metal-working sector. Mandello is also renowned for its food and wine, such as pulenta oncia, a vast choice of lake fish dishes and a broad selection of local cheeses. Nustranell, the local wine, is obtained from a mixture of different grapes, crushed according to traditional methods.
Mandello del Lario has an undeniable motoring vocation and is home not only to Moto Guzzi but also companies such as Gilardoni Cilindri and Lafranconi Silenziatori, set up originally to supply Moto Guzzi, and which have expanded to become the main suppliers of Italian and foreign sector-lead companies. The first success of the “Moto Guzzi” brand dates back to 1921 with the “Normale”, a motorbike with avant-garde features that achieved international renown participating in various races. The 1950’s was a period of growth for Moto Guzzi but also marked the start of the crisis that soon reached its peak. The factory was taken over by Seimm, a subsidiary of Imi, whose business policy was to cut production costs. In 2004, an agreement was signed and the Aprilia Moto Guzzi Group was bought by the Piaggio Group.
The Moto Guzzi Museum showcases a vast collection of over 150 items including production motorcycles, sports bikes, experimental prototypes and engines. Exhibits include unique items such as the first motor bike built by Carlo Guzzi in 1919. The area dedicated to production motorcycles comprises a collection of over 80 bikes that trace the social and economic development of Italy. However, Moto Guzzi is famed in particular for having created vehicles that characterised Italian post-war mobility, such as the lightweight 65 “Guzzino”, and for “reinventing” the concept of the sports bike in the late sixties with the V7 Sport with its two-cylinder 90° V engine.
Mandello Del Lario
|Mayor: Riccardo Fasoli|
|Official website: www.mandellolario.it|
|Town Hall: Piazza Libertà, 33 – Postal code 41053|
|Surface area: Km2 41,77|