Australians have hotly anticipated the opening of the very first Il Mercato Centrale in Melbourne ever since it was first announced in 2022. At that time, it was expected to launch late the same year. But it’s now 2024, and we still have no hard date for its opening.
The highly ambitious venture came across a heap of setbacks, as the team behind it is determined to create a hospitality venue unlike anything that Melbourne has ever seen. All the red tape has now been sorted, however, and construction is charging ahead at 546 Collins Street at lightning speed.
First off, the 3500-square-metre space, spread across three stories, truly is enormous. The first floor will have a market feel to it but with more flash, fun and tech. Each of the vendors will be slinging their own specialty goods, with none competing with the other.
There’ll be a bakery, patisserie, pasta shop, pizza joint, cheese maker, butcher and seafood stall, to name a few. Here, you can get fresh produce to take away or order it to be cooked up right in front of you. That means that you can buy a steak to eat at home or ask them to pop it on the grill while you start on some wine that you ordered from the bar right in the centre of the ground floor. Want to make it a surf and turf? Order some grilled calamari from the seafood stall next door and create your own feast.
Conveniently, you’ll be able to order from any and all vendors all in one transaction by using a QR code — or…