Chef Carlo Cracco revives historic Milan mall as experimental space for food, architecture, design and art

by Megan Whitby | 26 Jun 2018
This is a space for experimentation where creativity becomes the common thread between food, architecture, design and art
– Carlo Cracco

Italian chef Carlo Cracco has unveiled his newest culinary enterprise in Milan – the restoration of Italian architect Giuseppe Mengoni’s 19th century Galleria.

The landmark building, previously known as ‘Milan’s Parlour’, is one of Europe's oldest active shopping malls, and its distinctive for its large glass dome.

Now called "Cracco in Galleria", the chef has brought one of his branded restaurants to the site, and has also introduced a café, patisserie, chocolaterie, wine bar and private lounge with the help of international architecture and interior design team, Studio Peregalli.

The leaders of the practice, Roberto Peregalli and Laura Sartori Rimini, have preserved the Galleria’s original Milanese style and culture while creating a dynamic space for up to 350 diners. They focused upon the traditional architectural vocabulary by retaining the building’s historic pilasters, entablatures, bas-reliefs and mosaics.

Cracco in Galleria consists of three floors, all of which are fitted with their own kitchen and feature unique crockery. All materials and furniture are bespoke and have been carefully produced by highly-specialised manufacturing companies, while hand-painted stucco walls feature throughout.

Peregalli and Rimini have paid particular attention to the lighting and acoustics, introducing dimmed lighting and sound-absorbing panels to create “a Milanese style which is delicate, sophisticated and intuitively present".

The first floor is home to Cracco’s restaurant, comprised of three rooms and two privé areas, where diners are served traditional food. In order to enhance the atmosphere, the designers used arches and pillars to frame large antiqued mirrors, increasing the number of viewpoints,

The second floor, privately accessible from an outdoor courtyard, is reserved for special occasions. The layout welcomes guests through a dark green fabric wardrobe, guiding them through to a large open space towards a large 1920’s Levanto marble bar counter. The space has purposefully been designed without any other fixed furnishings in order to allow the creation of a customisable environment.

The basement floor accommodates a wine cellar home to over 10,000 bottles and capacity for up to 50 guests.

Cracco said his ambition was to create a space for experimentation, “where creativity becomes the common thread between food, architecture, design and art".

Carlo Cracco  Milan  Cracco in Galleria  Milan  Studio Peregalli  Roberto Peregalli  Laura Sartori Rimini 
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Italian chef Carlo Cracco has unveiled his newest culinary enterprise in Milan – the restoration of Italian architect Giuseppe Mengoni’s 19th century Galleria. The landmark building, previously known as ‘Milan’s Parlour’, is one of Europe's oldest active shopping malls, and its distinctive for its large glass dome. Now called "Cracco in Galleria", the chef has brought one of his branded restaurants to the site, and has also introduced a café, patisserie,
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Designers Roberto Peregalli and Laura Sartori Rimini have preserved the Galleria’s original Milanese style and culture / Andrea Passuello
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Chef Carlo Cracco revives historic Milan mall as experimental space for food, architecture, design and art
Italian chef Carlo Cracco has unveiled his newest culinary enterprise in Milan, Cracco in Galleria; an attempt to restore Italian architect Giuseppe Mengoni’s 19th century Galleria to its former glory.