The avant-garde craftsman: Extravega
Technological innovation, attention to detail, experimentation and craftsmanship describe the unique vision of Extravega, Italian leader of tailor-made construction.
Specialised in exclusive resorts, sophisticated residences, museums, exhibition spaces, luxury shops, furnishings and interiors, they are in a constant dialogue between craft and cutting-edge innovation.
“ There is no single key to success but a series of actions that help the group’s greater good. This includes collaborators, suppliers, architects and end customers.
The real secret, for these actions to be successful, is to do them all, and maintain a burning desire to do them in the best possible way. “
Antonio Rillosi- Extravega CEO & Founder
Tiffany-style stained-glass windows, arches and decorations that echo Gothic styles, antiqued aluminium profiles, curved and layered glass. The new Wellness Centre by the architect Philippe Bonino is annexed to the ancient castle of Cong-County Mayo in Ireland - now a five-star resort - and is the emblem of the creative excellence of a leading international bespoke company: Extravega.
Sculpted by the skilled hands of its workers and created with the most advanced technologies, the high-end elements are the expression of constant research of the company founded in Paderno Dugnano (Milan) by the visionary entrepreneur Antonio Rillosi.
"Making tradition innovation" is the claim of Extravega which has always remained faithful to its artisan and manufacturing history: from the traditional metallic carpentry - its roots - to the production of bespoke metal, glass, wood, marble, resins, up to experimentation with new materials such as liquid metals. With offices opened in Sydney, London and New York - and the idea of expanding also in Shanghai and Tokyo - since its inception, Extravega has always stood out for innovation.
It was 1985 when the company started with the first numerically controlled punching and bending machines, and today, in its various factories and laboratories in northern Italy, 50 high precision machines redefine the very idea of perfection: from laser cutting in fibre optics to CNC machines for cutting and shaping glass and wood, from special equipment for glass lamination with EVA technology to 5-axis three-dimensional milling.
"In the last 10 years, the global recession changed the rules forever. We have noticed in all markets an increasingly massive use of production outsourcing to contain costs," explains Rillosi.
In Extravega, we work in a diametrically opposite way, gradually incorporating all the processes and know-how. A choice that has led us to master materials and processes, acting as total contractors in the most diverse projects - from one-off works of art to the creation of museums, to the furnishings of exclusive residences. In total we have about 120 collaborators divided into areas of expertise.”
Extravega’s far-sighted vision can tackle the most complex and sophisticated projects - "we prefer to challenge ourselves with projects that others will not do. For us, the word “bespoke” means something important." As in the Irish wellness centre, where "the arches and decorations are in a Gothic style - explains Rillosi - the pieces were fused. Starting from the manual chiselling of one of our expert modellers who faithfully replicated the precious sketches of the architect Philippe Bonino.
"Challenges that led Extravega to create new building types never before experienced:” the windows of the floor landing required the total privacy of some customers when they were in the pool area.”
Together with an American company we developed an electromagnetic glass that turns absolute black, totally preventing the view from the outside with the simple touch of an electric control.
Innovative construction techniques adopted for the windows and aluminium profiles then bronzed: “the curved glass is stratified due to thermal safety and can withstand the frequent hurricanes that hit that area. All certified - such as the water proofing of the metal elements - by the Arup engineering studio.” Thermal insulation and ventilation of the entire building dedicated to well-being, in which a swimming pool, a relaxation area, a spa and various massage areas have been conceived. Everything studied in minute detail since the inception of the installation, even the decorative glass windows in Tiffany style, lead-welded and layered both inside and outside the entire pavilion, in addition to thermal glazes insulated with argon gas exemplifies a harmonious dialogue between history and contemporaneity.
The material used for the pavilion faithfully simulates antique bronze. To guarantee its durability and the consistency of the colour, Extravega used modern anodic electro-colouring technologies for each extruded aluminium profile, with matrices created exclusively for the project. But one of the greatest difficulties encountered was the coordination of the latest-generation and aeraulic electrical-domotic systems for the operation of the spa inside the numerous metal and crystal parts that faithfully replicate a 19th Century Orangerie. What is the most impressive challenge in Cong-County Mayo?
"Time, both in relation to the duration of the construction and from the atmospheric point of view", Antonio Rillosi says with great pride. “We completed the entire project in less than six months with 69 continuous installation days, 50 of which passed under extremely violent storms. But our men never stopped, they never gave up, not even a day!”
“ In Extravega, we fall in love with the design and care for it from different points of view, starting from the aesthetic and functional desires of the architect and the property, by going through the value engineering necessary to minimize waste and time optimization.
The Project Manager is the conductor and has ample autonomy: from the purchase of raw materials to delivery to the customer, keys in hand. “
Antonio Rillosi- Extravega CEO & Founder