Constructed in just two years between 1676 and 1678, the Filatoio is one of the oldest silk factories in Europe. It was built by Giò Girolamo Galleani, an entrepreneur from Turin and the son of Giovanni Francesco, who a few years earlier had introduced the hydraulically powered circular twisting machine to Piedmont and overseen the construction in Venaria of the first factory, incorporating the silk mill for reeling and the spinning machine for twisting in the same building. Giò Girolamo Galleani followed the same model for the construction of the Caraglio silk factory and also attached residential quarters to the production premises. Production began declining at the Filatoio at the start of the 20th century.
Finally closed on the eve of the Second World War, it was recently restored.The production rooms and residential areas have been reconstructed and a section of the complex has been dedicated the Piedmontese Silk Factory Museum, which hosts temporary exhibitions on topics relating to silk and textiles, while a second section is used to display exhibitions of modern and contemporary art.
The guided tour covers the Piedmontese Silk Factory Museum, housed in a section of the complex. The massive silk twisting machines, the spinning room, the silk mill and the residential quarters can be seen. Visitors are free to explore the temporary exhibitions of contemporary art on their own, and tickets are available separately or including a visit to the museum.
Café and bookshop; ramps, lifts and bathrooms for the disabled; educational activities; 100-seat conference room with video-projector and audio amplification. Event rental.
Local sights: Santa Maria Assunta parish church, San Giovanni Battista church, Santi Pietro e Paolo church, Confraternita church, Cappuccini church and convent, Sant'Agnese church, Madonna del Castello sanctuary, Cappuccini convent, old town hall, castle
In the area: Mallè museum in Dronero, Grana valley, Roccolo castle and park in Busca, Villa Tornaforte and Villa Oldofredi Tadini in Cuneo
Typical products: cheeses, pears, beans, chestnuts, apples, peaches, Vallera torta amara
Events: “Di filo in filo” textile exhibition and market (June), festival of the Madonna del Castello (July), “Fiera d’Autunno” (September), “Aj a Caraj” garlic festival (November)