The Arena Civica Gianni Brera is a multi-purpose sports facility situated inside Sempione Park, close to Castello Sforzesco. It is designed by architect Luigi Canonica and inaugurated in 1807 with Napoleon present, nowadays is one of the most important monuments in Milan, location of celebrations, feasts and shows. Built in homage to the imperial roman tradition, the amphitheatre was constructed using the stones obtained destroying the Spanish fortifications of Castello Sforzesco and of the castle of Trezzo sull’Adda. It’s oval-shaped, 238m (780ft) long and 116m wide; the Arena holds up to 10.000 people.
In the 19th it’s been used for sport events such as chariot races, naval battles, aerostat ascensions, circus shows and ice-skating. From 1930 to 1958 the Arena was the official playing field of Milan’s football team named Inter until the San Siro stadium was built in order to have a more capacious venue. Since the seventies the Arena hosts athletics meetings (it’s the seat of Società Atletica Riccardi), rugby matches (also of the Italian team) outdoor shows and many concerts.