The Minoprio Foundation is a natural reservoir of about 60 hectares of green parkland, 25 kilometres from Milan and 10 from Como. The heart of the Foundation is the Villa Raimondi. Built in the second half of the eighteenth century, the villa now houses the administrative offices of the Minoprio Foundation; the villa has nineteenth century additions to the facade, with the family coat of arms on the tympanum and the “loggia d'onore” adding an ornamental touch. Some of the rooms on the ground floor have frescos and mosaic floors. The wing stretching down towards the river Seveso is particularly striking, and leads to the Botanical garden.
Villa Raimondi is surrounded by a huge botanical garden of seven hectares where there are over three hundred main species of tree and about 1600 shrubs and smaller trees. The Minoprio Foundation's botanical garden is a witness to the expertise of the students of the Scuola di Floro Orto Frutticoltura (School for the Cultivation of Flowers, Vegetables and Fruit), who have, for many years, been developing and looking after the garden.
This precious resource is immediately visible to the outside public, who have been coming in droves, reaching peaks of over 50 thousand visitors a year (from the general public as well as schools). The Minoprio Park, which includes among its monumental trees a magnificent Magnolia Grandiflora, an ancient Lime tree and a beautiful Sophora Japonica Pendula, is a kind of natural archive, a plant library where students and other enthusiasts can learn directly, benefiting from guided tours with expert personnel.
There are over 100 varieties of azalea and rhododendron, 130 varieties of camellia, over 200 varieties of herbaceous perennials, Japanese maple, tall tree plantations and hedges, 70 dwarf conifers, including species and cultivars, 50 varieties of iris, 40 of shrub and herbaceous peonies, 20 of hydrangea, about 70 groundcover and shrub roses, 14 species and varieties of wisteria, and 25 species and varieties of ornamental grasses. The Foundation also boasts an orchard of over 20 hectares with collections of ''antique fruit trees'', over 100 varieties of major and minor fruit trees (apples, pears, peaches, plums…) and 30 of the smaller fruits (blueberries, raspberries, blackcurrants, and blackberries).
The beautiful hothouse collections are particularly striking: the tropical hothouse and the Mediterranean garden, with their unique beauty, offer many fascinating areas which can by used as unusual settings for TV commercials, TV programmes, fashion shows and product catalogues.
The pumpkin greenhouse is marvellous in autumn.