Milan is much cooler than you would’ve ever thought, and frankly, it really is. I’ve just returned from one of the most precious Italian cities being known for its unwritten dress code, the tangible phenomenon of dolce vita, Vespas and mastering the art of eating out. Milan boasts many thoughts of associates: the Duomo, Via Montenapoleone, La Scala Theatre, Leonardo da Vinci’s Last Supper yet many more not so exposed treasures. I’m about to share a few of the latter if you are with me.
So yes, this was my fourth time in Milan and I have the feeling that I won’t ever get enough of it. Not because the Duomo leaves me breathless each time I pass by or due to the aperitivo that tastes like nowhere else in the world, but because it has so much to discover beyond its beloved clichés. I hope you don’t mind me hitting this very personal tone, but you may know the story behind my latest Milan trip. No, not the Fashion Week. Together with one of my fav girls, we’ve visited a very sweet friend of ours, Sofi, (obviously working in the fashion industry) who’s living the Milanese dream right now. It was the three of us girls discovering the very best of the city and its surroundings: Lago di Como (the celebrities’ Italian paradise); Bergamo, which should not be only seen from the airport; Tessabit and 10 Como Corso, which will make you shop; the Porta Nuova district; my favourite restaurant: Refettorio Simplicitas, and museum: Museo del Novecento. But let’s take one after the other.
TO DISCOVER: Lago di Como, Bergamo, Porta Nuova
Our trip to Como was one truly unforgettable experience. Getting on a boat in this cold weather, while looking at the gorgeous lakeside villas in the shadow of the scenic Rhaetian Alps, was a moment to remember forever. The Y-shaped Como lake is perhaps the most spectacular of Italy’s three major lakes, just as its admirable gardens that benefit from the mild climate and villas of mostly prestigious crowd and celebrities. Among others George Clooney, Madonna, Donatella Versace and Sir Richard Branson all own or have owned romantic villas on northern Italy’s idyllic downhill. Bergamo is almost just as beautiful though. The old town, which can be seen from the airport beautifully boasts landscapes that combine nature, architecture and the presence of tourists and inhabitants in a harmonious way. My third newly discover idea is the district of Porta Nuova that is something completely different. Literally called the “new gate”, it’s the main business district of Milan that’s modern architecture mesmerised me. The coolest building among all is called Bosco Verticale that consists of two towers, 110 m and 76 m tall, with terraces hosting about 900 trees and equipped with about 500 m2 of solar PV panels.
TO EAT OUT: Refettorio Simplicitas, Gelateria Della Musica, Al Pont De Ferr
The art of eating out in Italy has always been having its renaissance. Hence, obviously, we had to adjust. A cold glass of Prosecco, delicious vegetarian dishes made of carefully chosen veggies, fruits, fresh oils and cheeses are featuring the key of their cuisine. We found our latest addiction at a restaurant called Refettorio Simplicitas. The flavours, the interior, the atmosphere, the staff, the price were all equally inviting. Being situated in the heart of Milan, the place offers impeccable dishes, fresh juices, quality wines, a cosy outdoor yard and an overall whitewashed approach and soft lighting that gives the place a modern rustic yet elegant feel. This is currently one of the best kept secret of Milan and now its also yours! When in Italy, you can’t miss visiting Gelateria Della Musica either, which serves the creamiest and smoothest ice-cream on Earth. Four types of Pistachio, Pumpkin, Ricotta, Dark chocolate with Himalayan rose salt and much more flavours to try and love. Lastly, there is a place called Al Pont De Ferr, situated on the Naviglio Grande promenade in front of the old iron bridge, it serves gourmet cuisine we did not get to try, but! As looking through their mirrored kitchen, the 20 something man busy working on stylish dishes looked rather attractive. Have you guys maybe been there yet? I’m keen to try!
TO SHOP: Tessabit, 10 Corso Como, Corso di Porta Ticinese
While Tessabit and 10 Corso Como are super luxurious, one of my favourite streets to go shopping in Milan is called Corso di Porta Ticinese. This area is full of oh-so-comely vintage and concept stores where you can find super unique buys. The one-of-a-kind pieces will give proper different touch to your wardrobe whether you purchase a vintage Lanvin shirt, a pair of limited Vans sneakers or a hype Frav sweater. On the contrary Tessabit is an iconic spot of the picture-perfect celebrity haven of Como. The high-end boutique is featuring cutting edge luxury fashion since 1953, including brands like Stella McCartney, Each x Other or Marni. My absolute fav, 10 Corso Como is a stylish assemblage of cultural and commercial entities from fashion to design, including beauty, music, lifestyle, art and photography. Currently selling niche pieces such as DIESEL x XIAO LI items, GIANCARLO PETRIGLIA bags and Jewel Candles. As you can see fashion apparently isn’t the only thing Milan has to offer during the season. Museo del Novecento right next to the Duomo invites you for a proper contemporary experience through installations, sculptures, paintings with a view. The current Yves Klein & Lucio Fontana exhibition is deffo worth a visit.