Carlo e Camilla in Duomo: Cracco’s new restaurant in Milan features an underground atmosphere

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An underground bistro in which Gio Tirotto’s interior design plays with the dark shades and iridescent reflections of Grande Metal Look stoneware

The chef returns to the spaces of his legendary eponymous restaurant, located in Via Victor Hugo, with a new interpretation of the successful Carlo and Camilla format: informal, social and versatile (it is open from breakfast to after dinner). It is an underground project both literally, since it is spread over two floors below ground level, and figuratively, due to the dark charm of this alternative metropolitan living room.

“The two main concepts used as guidelines for the project are Milan and the Underground,” explains the designer from Piacenza, “a mix that I tried to balance through the clean, formal design of the furniture and outward refinement of the materials”.

The restaurant’s unconventional style is immediately apparent in the bar entrance area on the street, which features a pewter-effect steel counter topped by a sculptural Venini chandelier, sofas upholstered in black washed denim and raw aluminium chairs. From here, a staircase leads to floor – 2, which is split into various rooms. One notable room is designed as an amphitheatre, in which guests can try cocktails and easy-gourmet dishes in an informal way, seated on the two black oak steps of the podium. At the centre, the scene is dominated by the long social table, a stylistic and conceptual hallmark of the Carlo e Camilla format, which is designed for sharing the culinary and spatial experience.

The building envelope emphasizes the surreal dimension of the rooms. The Fenix boiserie features striking colour streaks and paintings of misty landscapes, (spray on canvas) works by the well-known writer Eron “in total chromatic harmony with the modular cladding that serves as a skin for the entire building”. A skin which, on the floor, gives the space a further sensory charge thanks to its dynamic metallic reflections, in perfect harmony with the raw details of the furnishings. It consists of extra-large, slimline (6 mm) porcelain stoneware from the Grande Metal Look series. For the project, Marazzi supplied a large 160×160 cm custom size, obtained by cutting 160×320 cm slabs, confirming its ability to respond to a designer’s every need with tailored support. In this case, there was a technical requirement for a high-performance, low-maintenance, seamless and above all expressive floor. The mineral charm of the Iron Dark colour variant responds, with great linguistic coherence, to a desire to give the space a strong, tactile and urban-chic character.