Certainly many of us have visited this place as children. You only have to see these scale reproductions of our peninsula to feel captivated. And maybe you even dream of walking on it and play with it. The park of Italy in miniature has a fifty-year history. It’s a wonder to behold and that conveys joy and amazement at any age. A place that over the years has become a destination for many travelers, a must for tourism to discover Italian wonders.
The construction of the park started back in 1970 with small reproductions. Now, it’s really big and its attractions are increasingly avant-garde. We speak to you hoping to arouse the curiosity to visit it, in those who have not been there yet.
Italy in miniature, a dream started 50 years ago
It all began in 1970. We are in Rimini where Ivo Rambaldi, the owner of a heating system company and a passionate about travel, history and art, came back to Italy from one of his trips with a nice idea. He had visited a miniature park. And so he decided to make one in his land. Thus, he started this ambitious project which materialized over the years. He wanted to create a place that would gather scale model of Italy’s rich cultural and monumental heritage.
However, the material for making the small monuments had to be resistant. And the resin foam was chosen, because strong and moldable. And so, with a team of 14 technicians, 2 surveyors and 4 professors, Rambaldi began his project. First by photographing Italian monuments and measuring them. He did a great research work until he built the first monument: Sant’Apollinare in Classe, in homage to Ravenna, his hometown.
The inauguration of Italy in miniature in July 1970
The structure with fifty monuments on an area of 20 thousand square meters opened on July 4, 1970. And from that moment on it has been a great growth. In these fifty years it has been visited by thirty million visitors, as reported on the park’s website. Over 270 architectural and landscape wonders, Italian and European, are represented. And there are about 10,000 plants and 5,000 miniature trees. Since March 2014 Italy in Miniature has became part of the Costa Parchi Edutainment Group. Its total surface is 85 thousand square meters. This year the milestone of fifty years will be crossed. And there are many scheduled appointments for this great event.
Some curiosities about the park
Italy in miniature contains 273 works created on a scale of reproductions from 1:25 to 1:50. And the processing times are also known. For example, to make the details of the miniatures of St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome and the whole structure they need 6 months with a team of 6 people. For the Colosseum 4 months and 4 people at work. The large Piazza dei Miracoli in Pisa and the details of its Tower took them 6 months and 4 people. The masterpiece of the Milan Cathedral required over 6,000 working hours. And the construction of Venice, which occupies an area of 6,600 square meters, is also a great work. The 20-meter high bell tower of San Marco, and 119 buildings have been reproduced for a 9-year long work. The Arena di Verona is also spectacular, with spectators.
From manual work to the use of new technology
It took a long time to realize the miniatures. In the past, artisans made them by hand. By carving on plates of a particular type of resin. Over the years, technology has made progress and now processing has evolved. The production company is the “General Display”. Photogrammetry and relief are used with 3D laser equipment to create the virtual model of the building. And a few years ago, a particular installation dedicated to the Italian flag was also built.
And attractions do not end there. The initiatives to celebrate the fiftieth anniversary after the opening are already in the pipeline. With many events for everyone, from schools to families. In fact, every year the large park is visited by many young people, discovering Italian miniatures and monuments.