‘The Most Beautiful Starbucks in the World’ Opens in Milan, Italy

In this photo taken on Tuesday, Sept. 4, 2108, an external view of the Starbucks store in Milan, Italy. Starbucks opens its first store in Italy Friday, betting that premium brews and novelties like a heated marble-topped coffee bar will win patrons in a country fond of its espresso rituals. Decades ago, Milan’s coffee bars had inspired the chain’s vision. Starbucks hopes clients will linger at Starbucks Reserve Roastery, where they can watch beans being roasted, sip Reserve coffee or have cocktails at a mezzanine-level bar in a cavernous space that once was a post office near the city’s Duomo, or cathedral. (AP Photo/Luca Bruno)

US coffee giant Starbucks is taking on Italy’s espresso masters with a lavish new cafe complete with nitro coffee, a heated marble-topped coffee bar, a 22ft high bronze cask, a wood-fired oven and a cocktail bar.

Starbucks is opening its first store in Italy on Friday in a cavernous former post office in the Piazza Cordusio square of Milan, where customers can watch the beans being roasted in a huge bronze cask, eat pizza from a hand-built Princi Bar wood-fired oven, or drink cocktails on the mezzanine-level bar.

In Italy, an espresso at a coffee bar is usually a quick morning or after-lunch ritual performed standing up.

In this photo taken on Tuesday, Sept. 4, 2108, employees at work in the Starbucks store in Milan, Italy. Starbucks opens its first store in Italy Friday, betting that premium brews and novelties like a heated marble-topped coffee bar will win patrons in a country fond of its espresso rituals. Decades ago, Milan’s coffee bars had inspired the chain’s vision. Starbucks hopes clients will linger at Starbucks Reserve Roastery, where they can watch beans being roasted, sip Reserve coffee or have cocktails at a mezzanine-level bar in a cavernous space that once was a post office near the city’s Duomo, or cathedral. (AP Photo/Luca Bruno)
In this photo taken on Tuesday, Sept. 4, 2108, a view of the Starbucks store in Milan, Italy. Starbucks opens its first store in Italy Friday, betting that premium brews and novelties like a heated marble-topped coffee bar will win patrons in a country fond of its espresso rituals. Decades ago, Milan’s coffee bars had inspired the chain’s vision. Starbucks hopes clients will linger at Starbucks Reserve Roastery, where they can watch beans being roasted, sip Reserve coffee or have cocktails at a mezzanine-level bar in a cavernous space that once was a post office near the city’s Duomo, or cathedral. (AP Photo/Luca Bruno)
Pastries and cakes on display at the first Reserve Roastery Starbucks to open in Europe in Milan, Italy, which will open its doors on Friday
The huge 22ft bronze cask centrepiece at the Starbucks in Milan where customers can watch the beans being roasted

Many neighbourhoods have cafes are practically on every corner, and Italians are on a first-name basis with their trusted barista.

Decades ago, Milan’s coffee bars inspired the global chain’s vision, bosses say.

Now Starbucks is hoping Italian clients will visit its new store, called the Reserve Roastery, for the premium brews and novelties in a country fond of its daily espresso rituals.

Italy is Starbucks’ 78th global market, and the Milan opening comes 20 years after Starbucks opened its first store in Europe, which was in London in Kings Road in 1998.

The company has described the Milan store as ‘the crown jewel of Starbucks global retail footprint’ and it says the chain plans more cafes in Milan later this year.

In this photo taken on Tuesday, Sept. 4, 2108, a view of the Starbucks store in Milan, Italy. Starbucks opens its first store in Italy Friday, betting that premium brews and novelties like a heated marble-topped coffee bar will win patrons in a country fond of its espresso rituals. Decades ago, Milan’s coffee bars had inspired the chain’s vision. Starbucks hopes clients will linger at Starbucks Reserve Roastery, where they can watch beans being roasted, sip Reserve coffee or have cocktails at a mezzanine-level bar in a cavernous space that once was a post office near the city’s Duomo, or cathedral. (AP Photo/Luca Bruno)
Mixologists make cocktails at the mezzanine-level bar in the new Starbucks in Milan which also serves wood-fired pizza
In this photo taken on Tuesday, Sept. 4, 2108, employees work at the Starbucks store in Milan, Italy. Starbucks opens its first store in Italy Friday, betting that premium brews and novelties like a heated marble-topped coffee bar will win patrons in a country fond of its espresso rituals. Decades ago, Milan’s coffee bars had inspired the chain’s vision. Starbucks hopes clients will linger at Starbucks Reserve Roastery, where they can watch beans being roasted, sip Reserve coffee or have cocktails at a mezzanine-level bar in a cavernous space that once was a post office near the city’s Duomo, or cathedral. (AP Photo/Luca Bruno)
Starbucks described the Milan store as ‘the crown jewel of Starbucks global retail footprint’ and says the chain plans more cafes in Milan later this year
In this photo taken on Tuesday, Sept. 4, 2108, a view of the Starbucks store in Milan, Italy. Starbucks opens its first store in Italy Friday, betting that premium brews and novelties like a heated marble-topped coffee bar will win patrons in a country fond of its espresso rituals. Decades ago, Milan’s coffee bars had inspired the chain’s vision. Starbucks hopes clients will linger at Starbucks Reserve Roastery, where they can watch beans being roasted, sip Reserve coffee or have cocktails at a mezzanine-level bar in a cavernous space that once was a post office near the city’s Duomo, or cathedral. (AP Photo/Luca Bruno)

Milan is also the first place where Starbucks has opened a store in its Roastery format in the untested territory of Europe.

Italians are used to marble counters for coffee bars, but Starbucks boasts that it outfitted its counter tops in the Milan store with heating so they won’t feel stone cold on chill days.

The centrepiece of the Milan store is a 22ft (6.5-meter) high bronze cask, which is part of the roasting process.

The company also hopes the store’s cocktail bar will be an attraction as many who work in Milan, Italy’s fashion and financial capital, cherish the tradition of meeting friends or colleagues for an ‘aperitivo’, or pre-dinner cocktail, often in cafes.

A Starbucks employee mixes an iced coffee in the heated marble-topped coffee bar in Milan
In this photo taken on Tuesday, Sept. 4, 2108, employees work at the Starbucks store in Milan, Italy. Starbucks opens its first store in Italy Friday, betting that premium brews and novelties like a heated marble-topped coffee bar will win patrons in a country fond of its espresso rituals. Decades ago, Milan’s coffee bars had inspired the chain’s vision. Starbucks hopes clients will linger at Starbucks Reserve Roastery, where they can watch beans being roasted, sip Reserve coffee or have cocktails at a mezzanine-level bar in a cavernous space that once was a post office near the city’s Duomo, or cathedral. (AP Photo/Luca Bruno)
In this photo taken on Tuesday, Sept. 4, 2108, employees work at the Starbucks store in Milan, Italy. Starbucks opens its first store in Italy Friday, betting that premium brews and novelties like a heated marble-topped coffee bar will win patrons in a country fond of its espresso rituals. Decades ago, Milan’s coffee bars had inspired the chain’s vision. Starbucks hopes clients will linger at Starbucks Reserve Roastery, where they can watch beans being roasted, sip Reserve coffee or have cocktails at a mezzanine-level bar in a cavernous space that once was a post office near the city’s Duomo, or cathedral. (AP Photo/Luca Bruno)
In this photo taken on Tuesday, Sept. 4, 2108, a waiter serves cappuccini at the Starbucks store in Milan, Italy. Starbucks opens its first store in Italy Friday, betting that premium brews and novelties like a heated marble-topped coffee bar will win patrons in a country fond of its espresso rituals. Decades ago, Milan’s coffee bars had inspired the chain’s vision. Starbucks hopes clients will linger at Starbucks Reserve Roastery, where they can watch beans being roasted, sip Reserve coffee or have cocktails at a mezzanine-level bar in a cavernous space that once was a post office near the city’s Duomo, or cathedral. (AP Photo/Luca Bruno)

Starbucks chief design officer Liz Muller told The Associated Press earlier this week that the company’s ‘not coming to Italy to teach people about coffee. This is where coffee was born’.

Instead, Muller said Starbucks ‘wanted to come and bring a premium experience that is different to what people in Italy are used to’.

She described that formula as including ‘many different brewing techniques and a space where we want you to stay longer and relax and enjoy’.

Starbucks first opened a Roastery in Seattle in 2014, where the US city that is home to its corporate headquarters, and a second one in Shanghai last year.

The new Starbucks in Milan also serves cocktails at a mezzanine-level bar and pizza from a wood-fired oven near the city’s cathedral
In this photo taken on Tuesday, Sept. 4, 2108, Liz Muller, Starbucks chief design officer, poses in the Starbucks store in Milan, Italy. Starbucks opens its first store in Italy Friday, betting that premium brews and novelties like a heated marble-topped coffee bar will win patrons in a country fond of its espresso rituals. Decades ago, Milan’s coffee bars had inspired the chain’s vision. Starbucks hopes clients will linger at Starbucks Reserve Roastery, where they can watch beans being roasted, sip Reserve coffee or have cocktails at a mezzanine-level bar in a cavernous space that once was a post office near the city’s Duomo, or cathedral. (AP Photo/Luca Bruno)
In this photo taken on Tuesday, Sept. 4, 2108, a waiter adds chocolate to coffee cups, at the Starbucks store in Milan, Italy. Starbucks opens its first store in Italy Friday, betting that premium brews and novelties like a heated marble-topped coffee bar will win patrons in a country fond of its espresso rituals. Decades ago, Milan’s coffee bars had inspired the chain’s vision. Starbucks hopes clients will linger at Starbucks Reserve Roastery, where they can watch beans being roasted, sip Reserve coffee or have cocktails at a mezzanine-level bar in a cavernous space that once was a post office near the city’s Duomo, or cathedral. (AP Photo/Luca Bruno)

SOURCE: Daily Mail, Chris Dyer; The Associated Press