Giorgia and Stefano are both ‘originals’ in the truest sense of the word. And their utterly original interpretation of what concepts like freedom and hospitality really mean gave birth to each of the three utterly original retreats within their very personal and exclusive portfolio.
Giorgia and Stefano Barbini are a couple with a mission: to be ambassadors of Italian style. Meeting them in one of their three exclusive lodges gives the impression that hospitality has always been their occupation. But appearances – as we all know – can be deceiving.
The Barbinis come from the world of fashion. From haute couture to be precise. They were major players, too. In addition to being the granddaughter of Gaetano Savini, the founder of the well-known Brioni fashion label for men, Giorgia Perrone was also the owner of the Escada flagship store in Rome and the managing retail director of Escada Italia. Her husband, Stefano Barbini, was Escada’s CEO in Italy and France as well as the executive head of marketing for international brands such as: Alberta Ferretti, Moschino, Jean Paul Gaultier and Ozbek.
At a certain point, the Barbinis decided to change their lives. One day, during a trip to Val Pusteria, they happened to come across a historic sixteenth-century residence situated 1,200 meters above sea level. It was love at first sight. Not a trace of doubt. The Barbinis’ decided, in that instant, to turn their backs once and for all on the world of fashion and the chaos of urban life. And thus, along with their three children they moved to San Lorenzo di Sebato, a village in the mountains of South Tyrol.
Enthusiastic about their new lives, far removed from the agitation and pace of a metropolis, they enrolled their children in the village school and put all of their creative energy into renovating the former hunting lodge. Galvanised and totally absorbed by the design of their new “baby” they decided not only to restore the residence to its ancient splendour, but also to transform it into an exclusive lodge for discerning guests.
From the outset, the couple planned every step of the restoration together with the ‘Office for the protection of architectural heritage’. They placed their trust in the finest local artisans to give new life to the ruin, which was originally built by the Bishop of Bressanone. The ultimate goal was to create a luxury retreat with high-quality standards while conserving the pre-existing structure to the extent possible. The result is nothing short of amazing: the two aesthetes have created in San Lorenzo Mountain Lodge a veritable masterpiece, a perfect symbiosis between history and modern functionality, a new way of living immersed in nature while sacrificing neither exclusivity nor creature comforts.
Giorgia and Stefano personally look after guests who arrive at the lodge, whether for a hit-and-run vacation or a longer break. Georgia’s extraordinary cuisine, Stefano’s stories and unique excursions, the lodge’s setting nestled amongst verdant woods, 360° service and total privacy: it was the synthesis of these elements that gave rise to an extraordinary and unexpected success story. And as the lodge itself was born, so were two outstanding hosts.
Convinced that something else lies beneath the veneer of splendour, Giorgia and Stefano soon began looking for a new way to introduce travellers to the beautiful side of Italy, to the authentic face of the Bel Paese. Their intuition came in a flash of genius that made everything clear in an instant: their second lodge would be called San Lorenzo Sea Lodge and would be on the sea.
San Lorenzo Sea Lodge is a luxury catamaran designed and built in Gdansk according to precise guidelines set forth by the Barbinis. It represents the meeting point between the mountain and the sea, a symbiosis for which Giorgia could not have found better names: White Deer for the mountain lodge and Blue Deer for the boat.
Since 2015, the Blue Deer San Lorenzo Sea Lodge has carried its passengers in exploration of the hidden marinas, bays and romantic inlets that dot the coasts of the Italian peninsula. Contrary to expectation, there are still places along the boot of Italy that have been spared by mass tourism, and that offer stunning nature, fascinating culture and authentic cuisine.
From the beginning, it was of the utmost importance to Giorgia and Stefano that they offer guests not only an exclusive retreat, but also a home away from home, a temporary refuge with the authentic flavour of Italy.
And then came Rome. The Eternal City, where Barbini hearts beat faster and stronger. And they’ve found their flagship in the heart of this extraordinary city.
A small balcony can be seen on the first floor of Palazzo Pamphili, along the façade of the Church of Sant’ Agnese in Agone. It directly overlooks Piazza Navona, known internationally for its Baroque fountain by Gian Lorenzo Bernini. This was the residence of Pope Innocent X; it was the hideaway where the pontiff held secret trysts with his sister-in-law, Olimpia Pamphilj.
It is inside these storied walls that Giorgia and Stefano have created their third, spectacular lodge: Holy Deer San Lorenzo City Lodge. This 350-square-meter luxury apartment not only boasts a world-class setting but also a level of craftsmanship that transports the visitor into a world of wonders. If the mountain lodge and catamaran stand out for their authenticity, the Holy Deer sets itself apart for its spectacular and refined style. Crossing its threshold is like stepping into the very essence of Baroque, in the truest sense of the word.
White Deer San Lorenzo Mountain Lodge
T: +39 0474 404042
Blue Deer San Lorenzo Sea Lodge
T: +39 335 230 498
Holy Deer San Lorenzo City Lodge
T: +39 06 68307993