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Italy: Galleria Vittorio Emmanuele II

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Galleria Vittorio Emmanuele II | Italy | Europe

[Visited: July 2002 and several times before]

Located centrally in Milan, right between the famous Duomo and the Scala theatre, lies the Galleria Vittorio Emmanuele II, erected in the 1860s and the 1870s. It is another monument for the King who unified Italy, just like Rome has its enormous Vittorio Emmanuele monument. You could call it a shopping mall, but it is a very elegant one in its sort. The ceiling, towering high above the audience below, consists of glass and iron domes.

Picture of Galleria Vittorio Emmanuele II (Italy): Galleria Vittorio Emmanuele in Milan

The Galleria was designed by Giuseppe Megnoni who unfortunately died just before completion of the building, falling from the scaffolding. Nowadays, the Galleria attracts a lot of Italians and foreigners alike, who come here to (window)shop, to drink or eat something, or just to walk around and marvel at the luxurious shops. Actually, because of its many functions, the Galleria has been dubbed the living room of Milan.

Picture of Galleria Vittorio Emmanuele II (Italy): Entrance of Galleria Vittorio Emmanuele, Milan

This is a place to watch the elegantly dressed Italians passing by, to buy an ice cream or to look at the mosaics high up in the ceiling in the octagonal court which represent Europe, Asia, Africa and America, or the mosaics at the ends of the arms of the Galleria which represent Agriculture, Science, Art and Industry. When looking at the mosaics in the court, be careful that the central floor is a little higher - it nearly made me fall.

Picture of Galleria Vittorio Emmanuele II (Italy): Detail of shop sign, Vittorio Emmanuele
Picture of Galleria Vittorio Emmanuele II (Italy): Floor in Vittorio Emmanuele gallery, Milan
Picture of Galleria Vittorio Emmanuele II (Italy): Shop in Vittorio Emmanuele gallery, Milan
Picture of Galleria Vittorio Emmanuele II (Italy): Detail of wall in Galleria Vittorio Emmanuele
Picture of Galleria Vittorio Emmanuele II (Italy): Vittorio Emmanuele shopping mall, Milan

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