Castellavazzo stone

A material with ancient beauty

Castellavazzo stone is very precious and has been widely used since ancient times.


It seems that this stone was quarried in the Roman age. The stone has two varieties: grey and red. The grey is given by clay minerals and graphite and this stone is quarried on the surface; the red is given by hematite and is found deep down. Castellavazzo stone is the most precious for its characteristics: its beauty and its hardness. One quarry is still working: Masor quarry in Olantreghe, near Castellavazzo and other ones. For centuries it has been considered a noble stone and has been used for the most beautiful and important architectural elements – indoor as well as outdoor, thanks to its resistance to sudden changes in temperature – in the whole province and further, transported on rafts. Belluno bell tower was made of Castellavazzo red stone: time has made the red lighter, to the extent that it seems to be white stone.

We may not notice it, but this stone has always been part of our lives. If we take a walk in Belluno, we can see how the stone is manifested in all its beauty. We can see it in palace architecture, in the most beloved churches, in Renaissance fountains found in the squares with statues of bishops. Water spills from bronze pipes with a dragon’s head representing the victory of good over evil. The old part of Castellavazzo is also made of this stone. A lot of stone houses are now uninhabited, abandoned or for sale. They are extremely interesting from an architectural point of view.

If we take a walk in the recently restored streets we can understand the beauty of this place, given by fascinating corners, framed by precious architecture of stone and the natural surroundings. The Castellavazzo quarry was owned by old Bruno Mazzucco,a hard worker and expert in the secrets and the working techniques in stone. Once he tried to drill Mount Civetta slopes, helped by some geologists: he wanted to obtain the beautiful Dolomite red stone. Unfortunately he did not succeed, because the stone was soft and crumbly. So he was satisfied with extracting the Castellavazzo stone, not less precious.

Nowadays Castellavazzo stone is extracted by Roccia Scavi, while it is worked and sold by Antonio Cason’s Cason Marmi s.a.s. The products are mainly for interior fittings like bathtubs, basins, fireplaces, coatings. The firms constantly develop new work techniques and new and interesting combinations thanks to their passion for this stone. A recently made project is Rosapietra Hotel in Cortina d’Ampezzo: Castellavazzo stone is a key element together with wood. In the hotel bathrooms the use of different finishes is characteristic as are various cuts of the same stone.

The Stone and its architecture today



Wall coated with Castellavazzo stone with split slats. Rosapetra Restaurant and Hotel, Cortina, Carlo Samarati project.


The end wall is made of red Castellavazzo in slats (h. 8/10/12 cm) hand-cut with chisels; the basin top of cut-against-vein red Castellavazzo with a shiny surface finish and split edges; the mirror wall of cut-against-vein red Castellavazzo with bush-hammered and brushed surface finish and split edges. The result is a real work of art. Rosapetra Restaurant and Hotel, Cortina, Carlo Samarati project.


Detail: wall coated with Castellavazzo stone hand-worked with chisel. Rosapetra Restaurant and Hotel, Cortina, Carlo Samarati project.


Fireplace in old Castellavazzo stone. Private house, Belluno.


New base of the fireplace in Castellavazzo stone.


Sink and cooking area worktable with brushed finish. Private house, project of the architect Anoja.


Fireplace base with brushed finish and bush-hammered, brushed cachepot. Private house, Belluno, project of the architect Anoja.


Split-finished coated wall. Dim Sum restaurant. Milan, Carlo Samarati project.


Inside-and-out-coated wall with slabs with wood framework. Our Lady of Lourdes Sanctum, Nevegàl, Belluno.


Detail, wall coated with slabs. Our Lady of Lourdes Sanctum, Nevegàl, Belluno.


Detail, Our Lady of Lourdes Sanctum façade, Nevegàl, Belluno.


Detail, Our Lady of Lourdes Sanctum floor, Nevegàl, Belluno.


Detail, Our Lady of Lourdes Sanctum floor, Nevegàl, Belluno.


Hand-split Castellavazzo stone, detail.

La Pietra e l’architettura ieri



Rural houses and details of their walls.


Houses and details of walls and recent pavement in Castellavazzo.


Houses in Castellavazzo.


Detail: wall in Castellavazzo.


Houses in Castellavazzo.


Old Castellavazzo stone staircase.


Old fountain in the centre of Castellavazzo.


Detail: old fountain in the centre of Castellavazzo

Bell tower of the Cathedral of Belluno.


Fountain, Piazza Duomo, Belluno.


Motta Fountain, also “of the Seminary”, Belluno.


Fountain, Santo Stefano Square, Belluno.


San Rocco Renaissance Church façade, built in Castellavazzo stone and inaugurated in 1561.


Front door of the Church.


Church interior: a nave with semi-circular barrel vaults.


Architectural details, grey Castellavazzo stone. 


Architectural details. 


Aisle with cross vaults, Santo Stefano Church, Belluno. 


Bicolour arches, ribs and shafts in Castellavazzo stone and Valdart Bianco.


Detail: capital with leaves. 


Old floor of the Church. Notice the old procedure: after splitting the stone, simple iron brushes where used.


For an analysis of the features of the material go to the Castellavazzo stone technical page.