The Villa Necchi Campiglio is a real rarity: a luxurious estate (replete with pool and tennis court) in the midst of downtown Milan. The home's external lines are sleek and modern; a gracious Art Deco canopy over the entrance sets the stage for the public rooms inside. The home bears the mark of two distinct architects, the best, most lasting work being that of original designer Piero Portaluppi, whose minimalist approach still feels ultra-contemporary. The library and study are masterpieces in sleek understatement, the latter a high-ceilinged, rosewood paneled sanctuary that wouldn't be out of place in "Metropolis." Upstairs rooms, the work of a later, postwar architect, are notable for their assemblage of original artifacts; closets along the upper corridor are occasionally opened to display elegant period fashions. Fans of the wonderful film "I Am Love" will recognize the villa as the setting for its fictional dysfunctional family; it looks even better in person.
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