Henric and Marina Groenberg are a family of investors from Switzerland. Both are very experienced in investment and company management and have a joint company called HEMMA GROUP. Their portfolio includes several projects, but one of the milestones for the couple was their dream project, Villa Reale di Marlia in Tuscany. The luxury mansion, chapel and park have been restored to their former magnificence thanks to extensive restoration work performed from 2014 and still continuing. The Groenbergs also opened SurReale – a restaurant in Lucca. The concept of the restaurant develops from and is linked to the history of the villa.
About Villa Reale di Marlia a Lucca
Villa Reale di Marlia and the Park that surrounds it is a historic setting with roots stretching back to the Medieval age, which the initial construction of the estate dates back to. The villa is situated on the outskirts of Lucca and includes a number of buildings, chapels and stables.
The buildings and their decorative elements as well as the Park itself are the results of a series of transformations launched over the centuries by illustrious figures and royal dynasties such as Elisa Bonaparte, the sister of Napoleon.
Saving Villa Reale
In 2014, the neglected estate was sold to the Groenberg spouses, who fell in love with the Villa and took on the challenge of bringing it back to its former glory and opening it to the public for the first time. With the help of his wife Marina, Henric Groenberg immediately commissioned extensive restoration works to the buildings and the Park, and the property is still undergoing its transformation. Around 50 restorers specialising in wood, metal, marble, fabric and stone materials, paintings, frescoes and floor coverings are involved in restoring this historic structure.
“The Villa was opened to the public in March 2020, in a somewhat unfortunate year that did not allow many visitors to get to know and appreciate it. However, it is already making many people happy. On the territory of the Villa Reale there is a chapel dedicated to St. Francis Xavier for Christian weddings, and an Orthodox chapel we hope will soon be hosting the Orthodox ones,” comments Marina Groenberg.
SurReale is a restaurant in the city of Lucca that belongs to the Groenberg family. Looking at the design and the attention to detail it becomes evident that Villa Reale and SurReale share the same owners. The Bistrot often hosts various events and adds seasonal items to the menu. The design incorporates a number of elements from the villa’s history and the menu is contemporary Italian created by local young chefs with advise from also local Michelin starred chef.
Henric and Marina Groenberg
Henric Groenberg is managing the project of Villa Reale di Marlia. Besides this, he is overlooking the liquid portfolio of the HEMMA GROUP. Henric has an extensive career in asset management and private equity.
Marina Groenberg is the Founding Partner of HEMMA. She overviews strategic development of the Group and oversees private equity investments. Marina holds master degrees in math, law and economics and speaks 5 languages.