Galleria Subalpina is a really attractive place set in between Piazza Castello, Via Cesare Battisti and Piazza Carlo Alberto (where you can see the other face of Palazzo Carignano, the Renascimental Museum).
Here you can find the most ancient Turinese cinema, mentioned above (Cinema Romano), one of the historical cafes of the city (Baratti e Milano), a fancy restaurant, a flower shop, an antique dealer, a glasses shop and an old, well-known bookshop.
In winter the magnificent glass, iron and marble structure is one of the many urban settings for “Luci d’Artista”, the Christmas light installation all over the center and nearby areas. It depends on the year, but when they put up the big blue lights installation going inside Galleria Subalpina, it’s magical. It’s like a piece of contemporary art: dreamy with a glowing sky.
What I really like about Galleria Subalpina is the silence you can suddenly find if you’re walking under Portici [check the “Portici – Strolling like a king” article]. Say you’re overwhelmed by the crowd – you can just turn, open its glass doors and – POOF- everything is quiet, rich and neatly clean.
It’s like going to visit a wealthy but humble relative you seldom see. There are a lot of good things and maybe you feel a little embarrassed, but he/she is from your family and is really happy to spoil you a little.