Gavina showroom in Bologna: the unique shop by Carlo Scarpa

If you love modern architecture and interior design you already know that in Bologna there's a precious jewel that draws visitors from around the world: it's Dino Gavina showroom in Via Altabella, 23.

It was designed and built in the '60s by Carlo Scarpa, one of the most important Italian architectural designs of the twentieth century, to host Gavina's furniture showroom.

Who is Carlo Scarpa

His prestigious teaching and his professional activities are mainly focused on the preparation of exhibitions and shows, on the restoration of monuments, on the construction of private homes and shops.

Carlo Scarpa was able to develop projects and interventions in ancient contexts, thanks to his skills in reading the existing architecture.

​This feature was seen by his contemporaries as a limit, but by today's critics is seen as a strength: he worked like the great architects of the past and his architecture is therefore against the current movements of his time.
Details of Gavina showroom in Bologna
The usage of different colours and materials in perfect armony
New furniture by Reverso inside Gavina showroom

Gavina's shop in Bologna

In Italy there are only two stores designed by Scarpa. One is in Piazza San Marco in Venice and hosts Olivetti showroom, the other one is in Bologna.

This shop, on the ground floor of a Bologna house, was previously a hardware store.
Scarpa had to reshape a messy place divided by load-bearing walls and unsuited to the client's display purposes.

The solution designed by Scarpa, using an outside facade with large round windows, became one of the most unique references in the urban scene, increasing, at the same time, violent controversy in the name of conservation and respect of the ancient city.

Today this work is universally recognized as a cornerstone of contemporary Italian architecture.
Details of a door in Gavina showroom in Bologna
Surprise: you can also find a fountain!

How to visit Gavina Showroom in Bologna

The showroom was used by Gavina until 1990 and then became a toy shop by Hoffmann until Feb. 2016.

In September 2020 the shop opened again to exhibit trendy clothes.

Gavina showroom bologna 2020

Gavina showroom in 2020 with its new life

Dino Gavina's showroom
Via Altabella 32, Bologna

Carlo Scarpa - Sergio Los - Taschen, 1993

Related post

  • Alvar aalto riola bologna church outside

    Alvar Aalto's church in Riola: a history of light

    Why Alvar Aalto, one of the most important architect and designer of the XX century, would create a church in a tiny village of 300 people on the hills of Bologna?The story is long and complex. Let's start from the beginning. From Finland to Riola: Alvaar Alto in Bologna 1955. Cardinal Giacomo Lercaro established a commission for the creation of new churches around Bologna as a symbol of

  • Rocchetta mattei bologna

    Rocchetta Mattei: the secret castle near Bologna you have to visit

    Just an hour's drive from Bologna there's a place where a miracle medicine was founded, a hippogriff greets you at the entrance and where you can get married within an Esher's painting. ​No, I have not exaggerated with Pignoletto, it's Rocchetta Mattei, a unique castle between the hills, ideal for adults and children, that will make you stand jaw-dropping. Cesare Mattei and a new medicine

  • Best souvenir bologna

    8 original souvenirs to take home from Bologna

    Souvenirs are always a discussed topic amongst tourists.How many times have you found yourself wondering at the airport, 30min before the flight, trying to find something more interesting of that trash keychain or ugly t-shirt? Me: lots of times.​Here's a list of original souvenirs to take home from Bologna that will surprise your friends. 1. Lucio Dalla's vinyl Bologna is represented by

Home page icons22

Tasty newsletter

Subscribe to our monthly newsletter and get a free culinary travel EBOOK about Modena