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Will 'Opposites Attract' When the Excelsior Gallia in Milan Unveils Its New Addition?

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  Site Where: Piazza Duca D Aosta 9, Milan, Italy, 20124
February 28, 2014 at 9:23 AM | by | ()

Milan, recognized around the world as one of the great intersections of design culture--where fashion, interior design, and architecture come wonderfully together. We often look to Milan for inspiration and what’s next.

And what’s coming next, as in right next door to the circa 1932 Excelsior Hotel Gallia, is a striking new addition that is garnering quite a bit of attention. Not to mention an Italian tourism award for its modern design. Not bad for a project still under construction. Once completed sometime next this year, it will be hard to ignore but maybe easy to love. Once we get to know it.

Recently, we've seen hotels in Milan creatively integrate the old and the new, as in the Armani Hotel Milano, where Mr. Armani cleverly placed a glass “hat” on its rooftop. The addition to the Excelsior Gallia project will be much more dramatic with the old and the new standing side by side, literally joined at the hip.

The design of the building and its interiors has been awarded to Studio Marco Piva. The firm will also oversee the restoration of the French Belle Epoque inspired building. (FYI, the Excelsior is also owned by Katara Hospitality, who helped the Royal Savoy in Lausanne get its own new look too.)

Architect Marco Piva has only issued computer-generated images of the exterior but here is what we know so far. The new building will be a gleaming glass box of clear and screen-printed patterned glass that will selectively play games with the sunlight. The new building will be oriented around a glass-enclosed courtyard that will adjoin a conference center. The upper floors will have a spa and fitness center, and a new rooftop terrace will offer plenty of views of Milan’s architectural renaissance.

We have little advanced information on the interior design, although we hear there may be some elements of Art Deco. So we too, will have to wait until the hotel reopens to see if in fact, opposites attract. Ideally, guests.

The hotel is closed during renovation and will reopen later this year.

[Photo: Studio Marco Piva]

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