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Palazzo di Varignana Celebrates the Premier Edition of the Italian Motor Valley’s Concours d’Elegance with the Concorso d’Eleganza Varignana 1705, October 13 – 15, 2023


The prestigious event will be held just 20 minutes from Bologna in a dreamy countryside location under the watchful eye of an esteemed jury of automotive experts.

(Bologna, Italy) October 12, 2023: Palazzo di Varignana is pleased to announce the premier edition of the Concorso d’Eleganza Varignana 1705, a competition for vintage and classic cars, which will take place from October 13 – 15, 2023. The event is the first Concours d’Elegance held in the Emilia-Romagna region, also known as the “Italian Motor Valley” thanks to it being the birthplace of world-renowned Italian automotive brands including Ferrari, Lamborghini, and Maserati. 

Palazzo di Varignana’s founder, Carlo Gherardi, has brought the prestigious event to life with outstanding quality and aesthetic excellence. A highly selected roster of 22 vehicles built before 1973 will compete for distinguished awards that have been created exclusively for the event. The ones to watch include the Maserati 26, the winner of Palazzo di Varignana’s Varignana 1705 Classic Car Show this past July, along with leading models like the Lamborghini Miura, Ferrari 250 GT Lusso, Ferrari 275 GTB, Mercedes 300 SL Roadster, and Bugatti 44 Grand Prix. 

The esteemed jury defines the exclusivity of this elegant competition. On Saturday, Oct 14, the day’s festivities will be dedicated to the jury’s intricate evaluations, in which they assess the originality and authenticity of the vehicles, their historical significance, and the elegance of their design.

For the first edition of the Concorso d’Eleganza Varignana 1705, the jury evaluations will be entrusted to a panel of respected leaders in the automotive landscape. Stefano Pasini, author of over 30 books on automobiles, will preside as the President of the Jury, supported by Engineer Lorenzo Ramaciotti, President of the Jury of the Villa d’Este Competition for 20 years and former head of Pininfarina design. The jury will also include Adolfo Orsi, a scion of the Maserati family and world-renowned expert of the brand, an automotive historian, and a member of juries in the highest-level auto competitions, from Villa d’Este to Pebble Beach. Dr. Gianni Mercatali and Dr. Alessandra Giorgetti, well-known for participating in automotive juries for events all over the world, will round out the team of experts.

The Concorso d’Eleganza Varignana 1705 is an event for car aficionados and collectors alike, a competition at its highest level on an international playing field. The location at Palazzo di Varignana, located just 20 minutes from Bologna in the heart of Italy’s Motor Valley, is certainly not a coincidence. Emilia Romagna is not only a region dedicated to great engines and a love for cars, but symbolizes the very best of the Italian lifestyle. Emilia-Romagna is the place to nurture the greatest pleasures in Italian life, including extraordinary heritage, exceptional culinary experiences, and remarkable agricultural products like wine and olive oil. 

With ancient roots and an authentic Italian heart, Palazzo di Varignana is a place where nature, well-being, and gastronomy come together to offer a new concept in hospitality. Surrounded by rolling hills, gardens, fruit orchards, olive groves, and vineyards, the resort boasts 150 elegant guest rooms and suites as well as six private villas. Guests can enjoy four restaurants, a variety of bars, and a wine cellar, as well as the 43,000 sq ft VARSANA spa. With panoramic terraces, sports activities, and miles of trails, the resort is strategically positioned to explore the historic pearls of the Motor Valley. 


Friday 13 October

3.00 pm – 7.00 pm: Arrival at Palazzo di Varignana
4.00 pm – 7.00 pm: Accreditation at the Royal Train restaurant
8.00 pm: Welcome dinner and briefing

Saturday 14 October

8.30 – 9.30: Exhibition of the cars
9.30 – 11.00: Evaluation and judging of the cars
12.30 pm – 2.30 pm: Luncheon 
3.00 pm – 5.00 pm: Parade of cars on Palazzo di Varginana’s Bentivoglio Terrace
5.00 pm: Welcome aperitif
7.30 pm: Cocktail and Gala dinner

Sunday 15 October

Free day for activities

Palazzo di Varignana

Surrounded by the serene Bolognese rolling hills, Palazzo di Varignana is a quick, picturesque, 30-minute drive from the enchanting city of Bologna, the capital of the Emilia-Romagna region in Northern Italy. The heart of the property is Palazzo Bentivoglio, an 18th-century renovated castle surrounded by a contemporary village built in stone, a design that is coherent and harmonious with the encompassing landscape. The original and sustainable hospitality model boasts 150 rooms and suites and six luxury villas, which have been recently transformed from recovered old farmhouses. Guests may also book Oliveto sul Lago Country House which offers 12 rooms with a swimming pool, the perfect location for events. Palazzo di Varginana’s unique and original 43,000 sq ft Varsana SPA includes seven large swimming pools and offers programs that present Eastern and Western healing modalities in perfect balance. Four restaurants offer a farm-to-table concept with cuisines ranging from fine dining to traditional Italian to eclectic, one-of-a-kind culinary experiences. Elegant spaces dedicated to ceremonies, meetings, and events are also available. More than 240 acres of wellness trails on site allow guests to explore the estate by bike or foot. The recovery and regeneration process that inspired the rebirth of Palazzo Bentivoglio also applies to the estate’s farm which encompasses more than 1,200 acres of land from which high-quality products are grown. Revived ancient varieties of olive trees produce an internationally award-winning extra virgin olive oil of the highest quality.



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