The building was originally commissioned as a synagogue, although it has never been used for this purpose, changing ownership before completion.
At over 167 metres, La Mole was the highest brick building in the world at the time of its completion and remains the tallest building in Turin.
Architect Alessandro Antonelli quickly modified his original design to increase the planned height from around 66 metres to 113 metres, and he fell out with the commissioning Jewish community due to the resulting increase in costs and construction time.
Ceasing construction in 1869 due to the cost overruns and fitted with a provisional roof, Turin council took control of La Mole in 1873 in a deal where they made land available for the construction of another synagogue.
Antonelli started construction on the building once again, which the council dedicated to Vittorio Emanuele II, but further modifying the design several times to take it higher and higher.
La Mole Antonelliana was eventually finished in 1889, a year after Antonelli's death, the final height of 167 metres more than 100 metres higher than originally planned! Since 2000 La Mole has been home to the Museo Nazionale del Cinema, Italy's National Cinema Museum.
The panoramic lift is a vertigo inducing ride up through the cinema museum to a viewing platform 85 metres above, it's all-glass construction giving the sensation of flying up from ground level on the 59 second journey.
From up there you get fantastic views of Turin and its surroundings, looking across to the snow-capped mountains in the distance and sown on apartments, avenues and the rest of the world far below.