Travel Blog: Milan
Posted on May 29 2017
Amongst the hustle and bustle of Salone del Mobile, I managed to squeeze in some time to explore one of the most beautiful cities in the World, Milan. Anyone that has visited Milan during their incredible design week will know that the city puts on its best display, welcoming visitors from all corners of the globe. Whilst things are much busier than usual and it is often more expensive, it is an experience on such a scale that it cannot be missed for hardcore design lovers and all those in between.
Milan is a city where you can spend anything from a few days enjoying the sights to a full week to experience the beauties of Italian culture. For those with a limited time, or splitting their visit to Italy with another destination, there are a few must-see destinations and landmarks that cannot be left off the list. A personal favourite of mine and a sign that I have arrived in the great city is when you can view Dumo di Milano, known to us as Milan Cathedral. This mesmerisingly beautiful cathedral is the fifth largest in the world and its Gothic splendour with one hundred and thirty-five spires can be admired from many locations in the city.
Located adjacent to the cathedral is another must-visit destination and a true symbol of Milan, Galleria Vittotio Emanuele II. You have not experienced luxury shopping until you have visited this highly polished double arcade with iconic glass central dome. It is all about haute couture with iconic fashion houses such as Prada, Louis Vuitton, Gucci and Armani amongst some of the brands to grace the arcades with their presence. With this in mind, if you are a big spender, you may want to leave this until the end of your visit.
Whilst I had not initially planned to visit Sforza Castle, this impressive structure caught my eye as I was walking through the winding streets so, I decided to go in and explore. Now firmly placed on the top of my Milan highlights list, Sforza Castle combines a huge amount of history, culture and art in the structure of the building itself and the several museums and art galleries now contained within its fortified walls.Once you have taken everything in, there is a beautiful park located directly behind to take a stroll and appreciate the natural side of the city.
As I mentioned earlier, this is no ordinary trip to Milan and my main focus was to take in as much of the design events and showcases on display for Salone del Mobile. In recent years there have been expansions and creative movements away from the Fiera Milano Trade and Exhibition Centre located in Rho out onto the streets and showrooms of the city itself. Whilst the trade and exhibition spaces remain vital to the week, the city events have lured large crowds from locals to tourists, adding another layer to the experience. Street art, collection launches and mind-blowing collaborations are just a few of the things to expect from Milan's leading design districts; Brere, Ventura Lambrate and Tortona.
If travelling during Milan Design Week, be prepared to queue during the peak periods, particularly on the Friday and Saturday. It is best to spend a day within each design district but not forget to do your research before you arrive as there is a huge amount to experience and it is so easy to accidentally pass by and miss something out. Highlights from this year's events can be seen in my Salone del Mobile features via the link. A city that will forever remain close to my heart, Milan really does have it all to give.