Street view of Mudec museum of culture.

©Stephanie Ong/Lonely Planet

Aiming to be a place of dialogue between people and world cultures, Milan's Museum of Culture, housed in the ex-Ansaldo factory, has an ambitious remit. The huge industrial complex was re-engineered by British architect David Chipperfield into a series of severe spaces in translucent glass and concrete. Recent shows have included an exhibition of jean-Michel Basquiat's work focusing on race and identity politics, and world-class Frida Kahlo set in the context of the museum's indigenous Mesoamerican artefacts that informed her visual aesthetic.

The museum's 1st-class contemporary restaurant (meals €145 to €180, fixed-price lunch Tue-Fri €45), which is situated on the 3rd floor, is headed up by two-Michelin-starred chef Enrico Bartolini, who also oversees the more accessible gourmet bistro downstairs.