Who doesn't want to do a little shopping while away on vacation? - Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II is an open mall like no other. No trip to a fashion capital of the world is complete without a stroll through this architectural monument which happens to be one of Italy’s largest and oldest shopping malls.
The Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II is an indoor shopping centre that was created by constructing a four-story, glass, domed roof over top of existing streets and buildings. The construction of this structure was completed in 1867 and was named after Victor Emmanuel II, the first king of the Kingdom of Italy.
This Galleria is often nicknamed “Milan’s drawing room” as its the central place where people gather to shop, meet and eat. It is the home to many of Italy’s haute couture fashion designers, luxury retailer selling high quality goods and even a the Town House Galleria, an upscale hotel. Within the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II there is also some of the oldest, original shops in Italy, which are still thriving and open for business today.
The Biffi Cafe was opened in 1867 by Paolo Biffi who was the official pastry chef to the monarch and was known at the time for making the world’s largest panettone. This cafe still uses old world recipes and is decorated in an antique style with original pictures of the Galleria still hanging on its walls.
Savini Caffe is another original establishment of the Galleria and is an upscale, fine dining establishment. Savini is an excellent place to stop for lunch or dinner and offers a patio that overlooks the rest of the galleria. Camparino is another recommended stop for drinks or appetizers while in the Galleria as well. Its atmosphere is fun and light and is a great spot to people watch or take a break after a day of shopping. The opening hours of the stores in the Galleria are usually 9:30 am to 7:30 pm however the Galleria itself is always open for people to window shop and walk the streets.
If shopping is your specialty then a trip to the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II is a must for your Italian trip bucket list. Imagine spending your day eating at some of Milan’s finest original restaurants and browsing through designer stores like Prada, Versace, Gucci, Armani and Swarovski, just to name a few. This beautiful shopping arcade is sure to please all of your senses and provide you the opportunity to find the perfect Italian souvenir to bring home and show off to your friends.
Milano Centrale is the main train station in Milan and routes from all over Italy stop here. Getting to the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II shopping center from this station is easy as Milan offers a vast Metro system that provides fast and easy transport to all areas of the city. Cab fares are also reasonable and will drop you directly at the entrance to the Galleria.