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While various wireless mesh networks are being deployed in urban areas and university campuses for diverse purposes, less effort has been devoted to use such networks for broadband access in rural and mountain areas. In this paper, we present a broadband Internet access paradigm using multi-hop wireless mesh networks which is currently being validated using a real-life pilot network deployed in a small village in Northern Italy. This solution is developed by the ADHOCSYS project, which is financed by the European Commission under the FP6 IST strategic objective "broadband for all". Challenges exist in various aspects in order to develop a robust and service-oriented network, including for example network architecture, application scenarios, auto-configuration, routing, QoS, security and authentication, power supply, hardware selection and software development, business model etc. Following a general vision of the project, two key aspects, i. e. routing and QoS, are presented in more details in this paper.