MILAN — Lungarno Collection, the hotel management company owned by the Ferragamo family, is kicking off the renovation works of the city’s former archbishop seminary on Corso Venezia where it will open its first Milanese outpost in the fall of 2020.
As reported, the company secured the lease of the palazzo last June but was waiting for key approvals from the city’s municipal government. After receiving the green light from the local authority for the preservation of historical buildings, the company enlisted architect Michele De Lucchi to spearhead the 16th-century landmark location’s makeover.
The new Lungarno Collection luxury hotel will fall under the Portrait moniker, which the company already operates in Florence and Rome. Named after the idea of breaking the normal conventions of hospitality, the Milan Portrait hotel will be flanked by a shopping arcade, restaurants and a fitness center. They will be located on the prestigious building’s central 32,291-square-foot colonnaded courtyard, which connects Corso Venezia to nearby Via Sant’Andrea.
Milan’s key fashion retailer Antonia will exclusively manage the retail at the new location, market sources told WWD. As reported, Antonia is expected to dedicate the space to capsule collections and special collaborations, especially with streetwear labels. Reached on Tuesday, the company declined to comment while a Lungarno Collection spokeswoman said the hotel management is still “evaluating possible retail partners, which is too early to disclose.”
“We have always been passionate about hospitality; it’s an activity that we feel is very close and similar to fashion and a good field to reiterate what we have learned and acquired through the company that bears our name,” said Lungarno Collection president Leonardo Ferragamo. “We have the chance to bring the Portrait format to an exceptional place and to a city more and more central to the world, as a testament to the extraordinary features of the city,” he added.
“We’re enthusiastic to work on this project, which represents a challenge not only in terms of hospitality but also in relation to the city. We’re honored to give back this place and its beauty to the city, adding a new passageway to connect Corso Venezia and Via Sant’Andrea,” echoed Valeriano Antonioli, chief executive officer of the group.
The renovation works of the prestigious palazzo are due to end in time for the opening in mid-fall 2020. De Lucchi was tasked to renovate the complex while a name for the refurbishment of the interiors, dedicated to hospitality, has yet to be determined. “The transformation [of the building] into a go-to destination of the [city’s] Golden Triangle luxury shopping destination is a real stroke of luck. This is the best possible zone change of the property because of an interesting affinity between the spaces of a [former] religious educational institution and those of a modern welcome center,” De Lucchi said. The architect underscored the historical value of the building, unknown to many, which he is committed to preserve.
Lungarno Collection already operates four hotels, three restaurants and a beauty spa in Florence, as well as one Portrait hotel in Rome.
Antonia is a luxury store founded by Antonia Giacinti in 1999, which operates doors in Milan and Macau. Until the end of last year, Giacinti managed the fashion and accessories floors at Milanese department store Excelsior, now under the supervision of Beppe Angiolini from the Arezzo, Italy-based luxury shop Sugar.