Villa Necchi Campiglio

Top choice

Museum

in Quadrilatero d'Oro & Porta Venezia

MILAN, ITALY - JUNE 22:  A general view of the atmosphere at GQ Celebrates Jim Nelson's 10th Anniversary as Editor-in-Chief Party on June 22, 2013 in Milan at Villa Necchi on June 22, 2013 in Milan, Italy.  (Photo by Victor Boyko/Getty Images for GQ)

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Designed by homegrown talent Piero Portaluppi, this exquisitely restored 1930s villa was commissioned by Pavian heiresses Nedda and Gigina Necchi (of the Necchi sewing-machine empire), and Gigina's husband Angelo Campiglio. When it was completed the trio were proud owners of a home that embodied ‘new’ luxury, complete with a swimming pool, central heating and electronic shuttering. Portaluppi's commingling of art deco and rationalist styles powerfully evokes Milan's modernist imaginings. However, purists will lament later classical renovations by Tomaso Buzzi, favoured architect of the bourgeoisie.

Quotidian details – silk evening frocks hanging at the ready, luggage for the sisters' many overseas jaunts and dinnerware designed by Gio Ponti – are as enthralling as the sleek architectural lines and big-ticket artworks by Morandi and de Chirico. Enjoy a drink at the cafe by the pool while you're there.