The Vittoriale degli Italiani is a complex of buildings, streets, squares, an open theater, gardens and streams built between 1921 and 1938 in Gardone Riviera, on the Brescia side of Lake Garda, by Gabriele d'Annunzio designed by the architect Giancarlo Maroni, in memory of the "inimitable life" of the poet-soldier and the Italians' businesses during the First World War. Often, for synecdoche, this name refers only to the house of d'Annunzio, located within the complex.
The Vittoriale today is a foundation open to the public and visited every year by about 210,000 people.
Not far from Gargnano, in Toscolano Maderno, you can fi nd the Valle delle Cartiere (Valley of the Paper Mills), an important paper production centre from the Middle Ages until the twentieth century. Therein lies the Museum of the Paper, an ancient paper mill that has been transformed into an exhibition site and a museum, which retraces the steps of the history of paper production through an exciting tour that, from the 16th century core of the factory, in which you can fi nd reproductions of machines and equipment characteristic of the paper production from the 15th to the 18th century, goes through larger halls dedicated to the evolution of the production in the early stages of the Industrial Revolution.
Seat of a productive tradition which began in the 1300s, a fundamental paper pole in the territories of the Venetian Republic between 1400s and 1700s, place of particular business aff airs between 1800s and 1900s, the Paper-Mills’ Valley of Toscolano Maderno has preserved some impressive testimonials of its industrial past, incorporated in an environment which appears to be in stark contrast with that of the Riviera. The charm of the valley’s landscape, which is characterized by steep slopes and closed among narrow canyons, derives also from the richness and variety of its vegetation, which is mingled with the ruins and areas that were part of the industry.