Brera Palace

The Brera Palace is a neoclassical structure containing the Pinacoteca di Brera, an art gallery showing Milan's most famous work.

TravelCurious Tip

Very nearby is the rather beautiful and little known Chiesa di San Marco. Pay it a visit and admire the frescoes!

Formerly a Jesuit college, the Palazzo Brera is now home to several of Milan’s preeminent cultural institutions, including the Accademia di Brera and the Pinacoteca di Brera. Throughout Milan’s eventful history, the Palazzo has changed hands with the spoils of war and the mantle of power. The pope, the plague, the Habsburgs and Napoleon have all played a part in its story.

An Imperial Decree

The Pinacoteca di Brera alone warrants a visit to the Palazzo: it is one of Italy’s most important galleries. When Napoleon declared Milan capital of the Kingdom of Italy, treasures were brought in from across the country to underline its new status. Masterpieces from Raphael and Caravaggio were added to the collection, and a later exchange with the Louvre brought Flemish works to Italy, including pieces by Rubens and Van Dyck. Displayed chronologically, a trip to the Pinacoteca takes you through six centuries of Europe’s finest art.

The Elder Tree

The Orto Botanico di Brera is a botanical garden found between the Palazzo. Take a stroll between its rectangular, brick-trimmed flower beds and its elliptical ponds, and be sure to visit its 19th century greenhouse which contains one of the oldest Ginkgo biloba trees in Europe.

Nearby Attractions

See all attractions in Milan
La Scala Theatre
La Scala Theatre (Teatro alla Scalla) is an iconic theatre built in 1778 which has consistently held the most famous opera and ballet performances in Milano.
Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II
The Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II is one of the world's oldest shopping malls and it's known locally as "Milan's drawing room".
Quadrilatero d'oro
Quadrilatero d'oro is the local name for the four streets in the Galleria Vittorio Emmanuele II that contain the world's most famous up-market shopping district.
Museo Poldi Pezzoli
Founded by Gian Poldi Pezzoli this art museum holds a wide variety of Italian and Northern European work.
Museo Bagatti Valsecchi
Originally the Bagatti brother's house, it contains Renaissance furnishings, tapestries and art works.
Sforza Castle
The Sforza Castle was the Sforza dynasty's residence for centuries, and it now holds some of Milan's most important artistic work.

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