Chalet Cormignano is an old alpine chalet of the end of the 17th century with a warm and reassuring atmosphere, located at an altitude of 1,400 metres and harmoniously inserted in the unspoilt nature of the meadows and woods of the Upper Camonica Valley. The Chalet stands in the heart of an old rural village in the hamlet of “Cormignano”, located in a wide clearing with a breathtaking view of the surrounding glaciers, from Adamello to the Baitone mountain range.

The property is 3 km (5 minutes by car) from Vezza d’Oglio (province of Brescia – Alta Valle Camonica), 12 km from the renowned centre of Ponte di Legno and 7 km from its ski area (with over 100 km of slopes). Renovated for the first two floors (renovation in progress but already enjoyable), the Chalet is a perfect combination of tradition and innovation, history and technology.

Chalet Cormignano’s owner and created Martino Occhi followed his instinct in pursuing a whole new direction in life by renovating a family-owned stable and turning it into a special retreat for everyone to enjoy.

Q: Where did the idea of Chalet Cormignano come from and what’s the story behind it?

“Chalet Cormignano wasn’t in my plans until I came to a point in my life where I wanted a fresh start with my career. I had the urging feeling of starting off something I could call my own, where I could work with everything I believe in. This is when I looked back at my roots, at my territory, at my family. The chalet was originally owned by my family and I decided to bring on their legacy by turning it into something special but preserving its atmospheres at the same time.”

Q: How did you manage to renovate the chalet by preserving its roots? How would you describe the style as a whole?

“During the renovation works I carefully selected all the materials and textures so that I would preserve the original feeling of the building in its own alpine context. Some materials, like the naked rocks you can see throughout the walls, were found while doing excavation works, or, for example, I had a few wooden panels lying in the basement of the stable for years, they were in pretty good conditions so I used them to create brand new doors for my new spaces. I would describe the style of Chalet Cormignano as truly alpine and rustic, but at the same time you would be surprised to discover all the exciting and innovative additions that have been made.”

Q: We see you have an eye for innovation, could you tell us more about how you inserted innovative elements in such a rustic context?

“Many of our guests are surprised when they can see such innovative installations in our chalet. The outdoor sauna is the perfect example that embodies my thought of adding special sections to the house that could raise its perceived value but also give a true, edgy touch at the same time. The innovation lies also in such ways that are not perceived by the eye: the heating system of the building, for example, is an innovative floor-heating technology you could rarely find in the neighbouring areas. I use innovative design solutions not only to please the eye of the guests but also to grant them the best comfort they could possibly ask for.”

Q: What can you tell us about your relationship with Airbnb and how it helped commercialize your stable?

“Airbnb has been crucial in finding the right awareness of what I was doing. Nowadays there are plenty of platforms where I can commercialize my business but 5 or 6 years ago Airbnb was my first and most important touchpoint with the market and the world of hospitality.
Back then, and I believe still now, Airbnb had very low entry barriers – you’re immediately set up and ready to start operating by renting out your house, flat or room. Through Airbnb I could also draw in detail the profile of my guests. If it wasn’t for the platform I wouldn’t have believed that such group of people would travel all the way to the area to stay at my chalet. It was a truly eye-opening experience and I am very thankful still now.”

Q: What are your future plans with your business? Are you working on any new projects?

“Totally. Chalet Cormignano is only a part of a more complex property system I manage, called Alpexperience, which sees a growing number of houses that have the goal to provide our guests with the best experience ever here in the Alps. Chalet Cormignano itself is stil a work in progress – some areas of the building are being renovated as we speak and I can’t wait to show you the finished product, I’m sure you will be amazed by it.”