Varese & Northern Italy


I thought I had done enough traveling for 2016 and I did my best to avoid traveling to Italy again this year. However, with the holidays approaching and my supplier scheduled to close for 3 weeks, I was already searching for the cheapest tickets to Italy.

Varese is a city located in the northern province of Italy. From Milano, it is about 2 hours away via train. I love train travel in Italy as it provides a sense of nostalgia of the olden days. When I first arrived at the station the first thing I noticed was how fresh the air was.

Varese was once the core of metal and industrial production of Italy. As I was driving to my supplier, I passed several buildings that were abandoned and it clearly showed Italy’s economic struggles. Angelo’s company is one of the few that are left in Varese.


It is very common for an Italian company, but Angelo and Gabriell  (they are brothers) are the 3rd generation involved in the metal production. His grandfather was a metalsmith, and so was his father. Angelo and his brother are running the company now. His nephews are in charge of operation. Metal is what Angelo grew up with. The pride, tradition, and the experience are what set them apart from other manufactuers.


During the tour of their facility, I was just blown away. I simply could not believe how clean their facility was. I mean this is a metal factory after all. It was like a surgeon’s office!  This is the company that I had recently found out about. I’ve tried many lock closures before, but theirs was above anything I have seen or tried before. Talking to Angelo and examining their facility answered a lot of questions I had. Their products and qualities are nicely matching their expectancy of their approach to life and work.

Over dinner, Angelo kept telling me to visit this city called “Lugano” which was located 40 minutes north. It is an interesting city. Lugano is located inside the Swiss border where the citizens speak Italian. Angelo  was absolutely right, it is beautiful.


The main reason for my trip was to get this customized hardware corrected. At first, there seemed to be a complication, but with the full staff meeting, Angelo and I found a way to go around. This hardware holds a core theme in one part of the collection. I was promised to receive the sample before the holidays. I can’t wait to reveal what it is to you guys.

Chris Pak