Sogni (MI)

by Lavinia Colonna Preti
Sogni (MI) — Lombardia Secrets

In Milan, near Corso Genova, an evocative mid-19th century building has been transformed into the "dream" restaurant according to Claudio Antonioli, an entrepreneur who has been setting trends in fashion and music for more than 3 decades.

And that’s no small premise. In fact, Antonioli, famous on the international fashion scene for having launched the multi-brand stores of the same name as well as having opened the VOLT club in Milan, one of the major points of reference on the electronic scene, had been interested in the idea of his own ideal venue for quite some time.

And what made him dream big could only be a location that was itself the fruit of a great vision: the building erected by Enrico Mylius, entrepreneur and patron friend of Hayez, Goethe, Manzoni, as an “asylum for charity” with philanthropic purposes.

Sogni (MI) — Lombardia Secrets
Sogni (MI) — Lombardia Secrets

We wanted to create a place where you can feel good and reclaim the pleasure of being together, a place where food, design, fashion and music come together in a hymn to life.

Fate dictates that, after closure and long oblivion, the building is put up for auction and it is Antonioli himself who acquires it and, together with his trusted collaborators, primarily the Storage Associate studio with which he has collaborated since his first stores, he begins to design his “dream” place.

To do this, he takes inspiration from everything that makes him feel good and that he likes, starting from the history of Milan, from the chic decorations of architect Portaluppi to the warmth of Milanese trattorias, mixing it with his underground, innovative and international style.

Sogni (MI) — Lombardia Secrets

Thus, a conservative restoration begins which leaves the original façade intact and sees the reconstruction of the interiors respecting the fascinating volume of the original rooms which show, from the high ceilings to the iron-glass winter garden, all their nineteenth-century magnificence.

In fact, if at the entrance we are welcomed by the welcoming and cosy atmosphere that recalls the elegant reception rooms of the end of the century, from the Albergo Diurno Venezia to the lounges of the Belle Époque stations, as we enter the various rooms we are captivated from punk-glam details, to use a term stolen from fashion, such as the silver metal paneling or the gigantic alternative rock club speakers.

Sogni (MI) — Lombardia Secrets

The sound design was, in fact, curated by DJs Auggie & Dustin Phil, part of the VOLT line-up, who, in addition to ensuring the perfect acoustic experience in every area of the venue, also supervise the refined musical selection.

In fact, Sogni is divided into 5 areas that offer different, albeit complementary, experiences from 6pm to 2am (with dinner until 12am). At the entrance, we find the Salotto, a lounge dedicated to aperitifs and informal dinners with comfortable maxi sofas, followed by the Bar, characterized by a huge counter with the charm of the Prohibition period, and the Gallery, perfect for dinners for two, which opens onto the Veranda, the charming winter garden with elegant tropical plants and wrought iron furnishings.

Sogni (MI) — Lombardia Secrets
Sogni (MI) — Lombardia Secrets

While the last room, the one that was the ancient Refectory of the former school, is dedicated to the more intimate and romantic restaurant area, characterized by spectacular walls high to the ceiling, which host the hand-painted “Sogni” crockery, and by a huge horseshoe-shaped convivial table whose seats are divided by flowers and candles.

The menu, vegetarian and fish-based, is inspired by respect and love for nature and animals and is coordinated by chef Gianluca Clerici who offers great seafood dishes, from raw fish plateaus to Sicilian red prawns catalana and Royal grill selection, up to vegetable proposals such as Black Lentil terrine.

Sogni (MI) — Lombardia Secrets

And if you look carefully at the staff who refine the last touches before the opening, from lighting the candles to placing the cool tableware designed by Ann Demeulemeester, it seems like you are witnessing the last seconds before a fashion show, when it’s almost time to go on stage and give guests stolen moments of eternal beauty.

The Secret

All Sogni’s furnishings were designed and created to measure for the venue, such as the beautiful wooden chairs inspired by those of nineteenth-century bistros with the backrest covered in gold foil.

Useful Info

Via S. Calocero 8
20123 Milano
Tel. +39 02 45472909

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