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.
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.
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.
Around the World in 80 Clicks
Personal travel impressions both in words and images from Galleria Vittorio Emmanuele II (Italy). Clicking on the pictures enlarges them and enables you to send the picture as a free e-card or download it for personal use, for instance, on your weblog. Or click on the map above to visit more places close to Galleria Vittorio Emmanuele II. Read more about this site.