Gran Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II, one of the oldest shopping area of the World

Gran Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II, one of the oldest shopping area of the World

Milan offers a mix of historic architecture, modern buildings and, as everyone known, it is the capital of fashion.

In the center of Milan, Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II is nicknamed “the living room of Milan”, is an extraordinary structure of architecture, and more than an icon of Milanese identity.

When was it built? It was designed by Giuseppe Mengoni to celebrate the Union of Italy, between 1865 and 1867. It’s one of the oldest shopping area in the world and is located between two of the main monuments in Milan: the Duomo and the Teatro alla Scala.


As you walk into the Grand Gallery, you think to be inside the hall of an opera house or of a palace … it’s a mix of art and luxury under an amazing glass roof, that lets the sunlight in. The walls and shop fronts boast marbles, stuccos and mosaics. In its center, which is called “octagon”, mosaics showcase different parts of the world, to celebrate the centrality of the city in the world economic and cultural system. There is also a mosaic of Savoy coat and animals representing some Italian cities. The legend says that you will have good luck if you step on the bull with your right foot and rotate 360 ° you’re your eyes closed. If you step on the bull on December 31st at midnight, you will be lucky for a whole year.

It’s home of exclusive restaurants, hotels and luxury shops such as Prada, Gucci and Louis Vuitton, as well as other high-end boutiques.

Photo Roberto Chiovitti

…so in few words the Gran Gallery is an extravagant and opulent indoor shopping area.

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