Adventures in the Carrara Valley

[jpshare]

The moment Vinny Tavares landed in Pisa he knew this Italian trip would be different. He was invited by Nicholas Borghini on a personal tour of the famous Calacatta Borghini quarry. The Borghini family has owned the quarry that bears their name for many years now and has transformed it in the most sought after Italian marble in the world. If stones were to be compared to cars, the Calacatta Borghini would be the Ferrari of marble.

 Production is still very limited and contrary to quarries in Brazil and other countries, the Borghini blocks are not sold per cubicle meter but rather by the ton! Each pound of the beautiful white marble, with its’ famous soft goldish background, is highly valued in the marketplace.  The quarry consists of two main areas: the side of the mountain and the interior of the mountain. The side of the mountain is more common extraction area and the inside portion, which is literally inside of the opulant mountain range overlooking the Mediterranean sea, is where the more rare pieces come from.  After a couple of hours inspecting different blocks and discussing some particularites of the future of the quarry, Vinny bought the best two blocks that quarry has produced in a while. First ton is roughly 40 slabs and second tone is 26 slabs.

 As Tavares drives down the quarry back to the city center of Carrara he passes by a massive sculpture made out of marble called “Evoluzione” that so well reflects how much the city breathes and lives stone. Beautiful marble sculpture like “Evoluzione” are everywhere in Carrara. You would assume it maybe an effort by the city to inspire and remind its citizens that one way or another influenced and impacted by the magnificent quarries surrounding them.