Study-case: Il Centro, Milano

Study-case: Il Centro, Milano 1554 874 BUCHAREST REAL ESTATE CLUB

The new shopping center format: turns conventional retail

into an experience, social center and brand showcase

With a great vision and intuition, the Italian hypermarket giant and mall developer Finiper bought in the 90’s the former site in Milano of Alfa Romeo, one of the Italy’s most admired motorcar brands.

The huge location potential (on the north-west corner of Milan, between Malpensa airport, Lake Maggiore, Lake Como and Switzerland) has set the scene for what has become one of the most avant-garde pieces of architecture in Europe and a successful retail business with over 15 million visitors annually.



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food services


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Il Centro features a Fashion Court, inspired by London’s Covent Garden, which hosts brands such as Primark (the first in Italy, 7,000 sq. m on two levels), H&M, Zara, Pull & Bear, Berska, Massimo Dutti, Superdry, MAC, Swarovski or Bottega del Regalo.

Iper la Grande has been transformed into an innovative Market Place where fresh products of the hypermarket are brought into the mall in permanent kiosks where guests can experience live cooking shows, consume in situ or carry away freshly made meals. The Market Place climbs with a ramp from the ground floor to a large restaurants’ court on the first floor, resembling the ramp of the Guggenheim Museum in New York, except in this case food and taste are the arts on display.

Tall trees enrich the retail streets both outside and inside, creating a real garden with kiosks and restaurants, bike trails, children’s games and other activities related to sport and health. The green and multi-strata polycarbonate roof structure is made from sustainable materials and supported by 40 meters long timber beams, which represent one of the largest wooden structures ever built in Europe for a shopping mall. The entire construction is designed according to firm criteria of energy saving and sustainability, to achieve the prestigious LEED Gold level certification.

Where today there is the biggest shopping area of Italy, once there was a factory of legendary cars. The old circuit of Alfa Romeo has been converted in a brand-new testing and safe driving track managed by ACI VALLELUNGA: 1,500 sq. m of track where visitors can set free their speed desire, learn the importance of safety with safe driving courses and attend events and exhibitions about motors.

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