A blend of history, passion and design
One of the most thrilling and suggestive private exhibitions on the international scene, Museo Nicolis in Verona tells the story of 20th century technology and design.
The acknowledgment of excellence that comes today from being attributed the most prestigious awards in the global panorama of classic cars: Museum of the Year 2018 at The Historic Motoring Awards, assigned by a qualified international panel in a marvellous setting in London and Ruoteclassiche “Best in Classic – Museo dell’Anno”, the most coveted motoring grand gala in Italy.
Moreover, Villafranca di Verona is part of “Associazione Città dei Motori”, an Association that unites 27 Italian Towns, whose aim is to promote the best of our Country through international brands such as Pagani, Lamborghini, Ferrari, realities that are our partners.
Museo Nicolis offers exclusive mechanical treasures from the 1900s in a spectacular itinerary: unprecedented and sophisticated collections, milestones of the most effervescent creative genius. A treasure trove of rare mechanical and style masterpieces, the result of the inspiration of eclectic designers, that contains, among other things, fundamental references to the history of motoring. Glorious brands like Alfa Romeo, Ferrari, Lancia, Maserati, Bugatti, Rolls Royce, Avions Voisin, Darracq and Isotta Fraschini are on display.
Unique items that represent and trace the evolution of the automobile: valuable elements selected with a precise criterion that ideally comprise a tangible encyclopaedia in a universal language. This makes the Museo an emotional, modern, globalized place of widespread culture. Cherished collections, far-sightedly preserved and selected by Luciano Nicolis as proof of human genius and art: the car, with innumerable brand identities, mechanical technology in its most sophisticated expression in a handed-down progress, placed at the disposal of the community.
Ten collections and hundreds of unique items
The Museo owes its foundation to the enormous passion of Luciano Nicolis. The story of a lifetime that found its ideal location in a 6000 m² exhibition area when it opened in the year 2000. The totally accessible and ultra-modern building enhances the quality of the exhibits on display and contributes to surprising and involving the spectator. The Car, Technology and Mechanics museum par excellence that conveys itself with extreme skill and delves its roots into technological excellence. Its masterpieces are divided into ten different collections with the aim of creating an organic, professionally qualified and structured itinerary to satisfy the most demanding visitor. The wide range of the collection patrimony represents an exclusive reality: over 200 classic cars, 110 bicycles, 100 motorcycles; 500 cameras and movie cameras, 100 musical instruments and jukeboxes, 100 typewriters, aeroplanes and instruments, a military area with First World War and Second World War relics, models of cars, aeroplanes and trains. A rare collection of driving accessories that includes over 100 steering wheels from sophisticated one-seater Formula 1 racing cars and touring steering wheels. Innumerable works of human genius displayed according to anthological, historical and stylistic itineraries.
A sprawling museum in which the public can discover man’s inventions and interpret them in every possible way.
“From Buffalo Bill’s telegraph to the De Lorean from ‘Back to the Future’. From the late 1800 velocipede to the first typewriter from the early 1900s. From the Queen of the Road Ferrari to the Master of the Skies aeroplane. And I could go on: the visitors amazement bows before the magnificent reality of Museo Nicolis. Here, the unique passion of the collector has gathered together, like the tiles in a rare mosaic, the “pieces” of a wonderful never-ending story: that of mankind’s progress, captured in the most vital instants and instincts of its creativity. Because what Museo Nicolis wants, and manages, to be is the tangible proof of untiring evolution. And those who make this journey among the Nicolis halls and rooms, never tire of travelling on the path of the best memories.” Leo Turrini
Corporate culture and brand heritage
It is no coincidence that Museo Nicolis is a one-of-a-kind location, indicated as emblematic of modern corporate culture.
It was back in 1934 when Francesco Nicolis, father of Luciano Nicolis, perceptive to all forms of saving and equipped with an acute intelligence, decided to collect what other people through away: waste paper. Urged on by his son, Luciano, the activity expanded rapidly and, in the early ‘60s, a further impulse transformed the family business into a leading group in Europe for the recovery of paper and a solid reference point in the international environmental service sector.
The concepts of “collect and re-use” which led to the growth of the paper business, are the very same that nurtured Luciano Nicolis’ highly selective passion for collecting, so that he was able to perceive the value of refined products of human genius that had been forgotten or deemed worthless. His tireless search led him to travel the world to hunt down and recover classic cars and other valuable artefacts to then restore them and return them to their original splendour: a passion that has given a patrimony, that might otherwise have been lost, back to history and which is now available to the community. To mention a few to demonstrate the extremely high level: the “Motrice Pia”, the first combustion engine patented by Veronese engineer Enrico Bernardi in 1882, the 1929 Isotta Fraschini (commemorated by the film “Sunset Boulevard” and by illustrious personalities, such as Tsar Alexander, Rudolph Valentino, Isadora Duncan…), the Lancia Astura Mille Miglia, the only one in the world, custom-built for Luigi Villoresi; innumerable means of transport and unprecedented items that trace the history of mankind and society in the last two centuries.
A modern Corporate Museum
The talent of its founder alone partly explains the success that the Museo Nicolis has achieved over the years. In fact, this success is the basis of the business management of the organization, entrusted since its opening to Silvia Nicolis, President of the Museum, who has aimed at promoting culture, tourism and the territory.
Assisted by a young and professional team, she has ingrained an innovative change, a vision that enhances and extends every museum representation. An offer which, thanks to the variety of the materials and themes involved, includes a large range of themed exhibitions with a significant humanist and cultural imprint. A unique heritage in terms of transversality, brimming with ideas that range from mechanics to design, to craftsmanship and the history of society, fashion, cinema and art.
This is what makes Museo Nicolis stand out as a centre for global relations, with its natural inclination for divulging and promoting the love for technology and mechanics in all their forms.
The promotional initiatives, services for the public and the Business Community, aimed at generating resources for managing and developing the Museo, are an extraordinary platform for the overall enhancement of the territory, a tribute to the heritage marketing philosophy that has always inspired Nicolis.
This led to registration in the Museimpresa network (museimpresa.com), the Italian Association of Business Archives and Museums set up by Assolombarda and Confindustria to promote and place enterprises with a modern business and social culture onto the network.
In this Institution, Silvia Nicolis, is vice president, committed to promoting top Italian enterprises and their brand heritage. Furthermore, she is member of Gruppo Tecnico Cultura of Confindustria Nazionale.
The Congress Centre
Accompanying the exhibition area, Museo Nicolis has a multi-functional daylight area, with cutting edge fittings, specifically for conferences, business meetings and events and able to host hundreds of people. The 110 m² “Villoresi” Meeting Room is sound-proofed and equipped with the latest technologies and has an adjoining private and reserved VIP Room. Outside is a roof top terrace, the highly exclusive, 220 m² “Vistotal” multi-functional area for lunches, receptions and product presentations. Being entirely glazed, the natural light makes this area particularly suitable for photo shoots. The highly professional staff in the Congress Centre is able to set up and manage events of various sizes and types.
“Lo Spazio delle Idee”
“Lo Spazio delle Idee”, is a 600 m² area specifically for themed exhibitions, artistic and cultural experimentations, shows, gala evenings, institutional events and didactic initiatives. Located on the ground floor of the Museo, the area preserves charm and atmosphere while being autonomous, at the service of Institutions, Companies, Associations, representatives of the artistic, cultural, political, entrepreneurial world searching for an unforgettable and suggestive location: elegant, functional, easily accessible and easy to outfit.
The Documentation Centre
The Nicolis Documentation and Study Centre aims to promote the patrimony, research, collection and organization of historical evidence. It finds and catalogues documents regarding the Collections, developing all the services aimed at preserving the precious archives in order to make them useful to researchers, students and enthusiasts. A historical document archive and a bank-image of the collections.
Photo Shooting and Media
The Collections in the Museo, exhibited with historical or stylistic criteria, provide a rigorous yet exciting and entertaining communication feature. They offer the ideal context for photo sets, television reports, commercials, musical videos. As for its cultural and information-spreading vocation, the Museo collaborates constantly with the media and top experts in communication, placing its own treasures at the disposal of cultural, scientific and editorial events or prestigious and important social occasions that take place in various areas of the Museum.
The Museo’s Bookstore is one of the most well-stocked on the international motoring scene (car, motorcycle, racing drivers, competitions, victories, trophies and much, much more). A constant destination for scholars, the Bookstore offers unprecedented publications, photograph books, biographies on champions and has an extremely wide and complete assortment. The editorial offer is accompanied by a merchandising line designed and created especially for the Museo.
The Museo has a particular and exclusive “Vintage Store” where visitors can find original, sought-after and often unique vintage items of considerable historical value that characterized past eras and lifestyles. A refined selection of rare travel items: trunks, hat boxes, magazines, scarves, driving helmets, as well as a variety of exclusive accessories.
The Museo Nicolis has successfully been developing cultural projects for the scholastic world for some time. In collaboration with teachers and educators, special didactic sections have been set up to help the students trace the history of modern society, even with the aid of innovative technologies. It also actively collaborates with Universities and Research Institutes.
Accessibility and inclusion initiatives
Museo Nicolis was designed according to criteria that take advantage of easily accessible and available the spaces. A destination for visitors of all ages, it pays particular attention to the needs of its public. Nicolis offers a privileged place of culture and entertainment for everyone, as well as an articulate programme of “barrier-free”.
Hospitality for tourists has always been one of Museo Nicolis’ priorities: in fact, it favours the encounter between the territory and Italian culture by inviting visitors to discover the cultural, artistic and wine and food proposals within the area. The Museum promotes national and international tourism thanks to consolidated relations with leading tour operators since it is just a short distance from Lake Garda, the artistic cities of Verona and Mantua, the wine routes of Valpolicella, Soave and Bardolino, the Rice lands and many itineraries waiting to be discovered throughout the surrounding area. Venice is naturally one of the main destinations in our privileged itineraries.
The Team is able to host visitors in English and many other languages, including German and Spanish. Another aspect that should not be neglected is how easy it is to arrive at Museo Nicolis in Verona either by car, train, motorcycle or plane, due to its perfect location in terms of northern Italy’s main logistics crossroads. Convenient for cyclists, Nicolis perfectly integrates with abundant bike-tourism routes in our territory. For this reason, the Museum is an e-bike recharge station and founder of the Verona Garda Bike network (veronagardabike.com).
tel. +39 045 630 32 89
Where: Museo Nicolis | Villafranca di Verona | Viale Postumia, 71
When: from Friday to Sunday, 10:00 a.m. -6:00 p.m. Others day the Museum is open on reservation for Private Events and Guided tours (starting from 35 persons)
tel +39 045 630 32 89 / 6304959 fax +39 045 7979493