ARE YOU READY FOR THE SUMMER SALES?
In Milan, it's the “hottest” season of the year and we're not only talking about temperatures. It's sale time in the city, an absolute ‘must' for shopping addicts!
It's the "hottest" season of the year, an absolute must for shopping addicts!
All Milan knows that the first week of July is one of the highlights of the year, and marks the eagerly-awaited arrival of the summer sales (which, this year start on 1st July). Boutiques are filled to overflowing with customers unable to resist the temptation of taking advantage of the discounts of on-trend collections. Based on the motto “tell me what kind of shopping you're looking for and I'll tell you who you are” Where® offers you a brief overview of Milanese districts where you'll find the best bargains to satisfy your every style whim. Enjoy!
PASSION FOR LUXURY SHOPPING You say luxury and the first word that comes
to mind in Milan is the ‘Quadrilatero'. That's right because, throughout the world our “Quadrilatero della Moda” is recognized as the most exclusive destination for upscale shopping: via Montenapoleone, via della Spiga, via Gesù, via Verri, via Bagutta, via Borgospesso, via Santo Spirito, via Sant'Andrea and via Manzoni are the nec plus ultra of Milanese fashion, for men, women and even children, thanks to the marvellous boutiques that vie for attention with glittering window displays and unmissable collections. But not only. In via Montenapoleone, if you're tired and want to take a truly chic break then make sure to recharge your batteries with a classic espresso at Pasticceria Cova Milano, the historic bar now owned by fashion giant LVMH in via Montenapoleone 8 (recently renovated and enlarged with a new outdoor area to celebrate its 200th anniversary), Pasticceria Marchesi across the street, currently owned by the Prada Group (its historic headquarters are located in via Santa Maria alla Porta, while its most recent branch can be found in the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II) or recent newcomer illy Caffè (at number 19), a new meeting point for lovers of taste and excellence, and the perfect place for an all-day dining experience. We end our tour of cafès by moving on to the nearby Galleria Strasburgo (S. Babila), where we find Caffè Vergnano 1882, a new venue offering an all-round service that includes breakfast, lunch and the classic aperitivo. On the other hand, via Borgospesso, is home to ‘Borgospesso 1', a new go-to address for Milanese food which gathers several historic gastronomic institutions including Drogheria Parini 1915, Al Panino Bistrot and Trattoria Bagutta 1934 under one roof… for a must-try experience! Another reference point for upmarket shopping is the picturesque, iconic and simply spectacular Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II, home to the greats of fashion, including Prada, Gucci, Louis Vuitton and Versace and top restaurants: a unique destination both whose upper and lower spaces are well worth a visit. Known as the ‘Living Room of the Milanese', the Galleria also offers a spectacular rooftop view with the “Highline Galleria”, a pedestrian path along its rooftop
walkways, from which you can enjoy an unparalleled view over piazza Duomo and its surroundings! www.highlinegalleria.com
ARE YOU A TREND SETTER? Corso Vittorio Emanuele II and the centre's neighbouring via Torino, but also corso Buenos Aires, are the shopping meccas most frequently patronized by young, fashionconscious Milanese, in search of the latest trends. These areas boast loads and loads of shops and it's easy to get lost amidst the myriad offers of ever-changing, ready-towear fashions. Piazza Duomo branches off into corso Vittorio Emanuele which leads to piazza San Babila and the nearby via Torino which stretches as far as porta Ticinese (from here you can access the Navigli and the Darsena). On the other hand, lying in the opposite direction is corso Buenos Aires, the longest shopping street in the world, where an increasing number of ‘maxi boutiques' have taken up residence. If you need to take a breather after indulging in some frenetic shopping then why not head to the beautiful Indro Montanelli Public Gardens in porta Venezia? The gardens are also home to the Planetarium and the Civic Museum of Natural History.
ARTISTIC & BEAUTY BOUTIQUES Brera and the Navigli are two of the most picturesque districts in old Milan. If this is where you're headed, then make sure to wear ‘flatties', their cobbled streets were not originally designed for heels! A favourite haunt of Milanese locals for the indulgent aperitivo ritual, the Navigli and the Darsena are a not-to-be-missed destination for visitors to Milan where it is almost impossible not to be captivated by the ‘viby' atmosphere of its numerous art ateliers! Since time immemorial, Brera has been associated with the artistic heart of the city. As you walk through this historic district you'll be struck by its almost surreal atmosphere, a treasure trove of small artists' workshops, quaint shops selling canvases and paints, antique shops and the imposing Academy of Fine Arts. Highlights include the masterpieces at the Pinacoteca, the historic Biblioteca Nazionale Braidense, the Astronomical Museum, the oldest institute of scientific research in the city, and the Botanical Gardens, an evocative green oasis in the heart of the city. Brera never ceases to amaze and now, in addition to its picturesque artistic ‘botteghe', countless boutiques showcasing rare essences are springing up and transforming Brera into a ‘district of Artistic Perfumery'. Among these, particularly worthy of note is The Merchant of Venice, a historic perfumery epitomizing the art of Venetian perfume-making, and highlighting the city's role as the forerunner and inventor of perfume as we know it today (via Brera 4). While in the area, make sure to drop into the quaint shop located next to it.
The venue in question is Pettinaroli, where collectors or enthusiasts will find a wide selection of maps, antique or modern globes, desk items, photo albums and much more. Our next port of call is number 6 via Fiori Chiari, where we find the sophisticated home fragrances of Culti Milano which will captivate you with their delicate essences and contemporary design candles!
A TRANQUIL HAVEN OF SHOPPING Corso Vercelli and via Vincenzo Monti are Milan's ‘niche' shopping streets which though less busy and easier to shop in than the city centre, are, nevertheless, packed to overflowing with small shops just waiting to be discovered in a characteristic atmosphere, further enhanced by the passage of historic trams that give this street an almost retrò flavour. While strolling along corso Vercelli and via Belfiore - midway between the Conciliazione and Wagner metro stops - you will come across lots of trendy shops for all tastes: from clothing to footwear, from decorations for the home right up to taste locations, small gems of sought-after elegance that are bound to seduce you! What's more the area is also located just a stone's throw from one of Milan's most important attractions: The Last Supper, a masterpiece admired each year by millions of visitors. Also within easy walking distance are Parco Sempione, the Triennale di Milano and, if you're feeling energetic, you can easily push onwards until you reach the Castello Sforzesco.
INNOVATIVE SHOPPING We now find ourselves in one of Milan's most contemporary, fashionable districts, bursting with buzzing bars that cater to the traditional aperitivo ritual, a destination where hip youngsters are always in the spotlight. Obviously, we're talking about corso Como and piazza Gae Aulenti, a real jewel of architecture and design (which is dedicated to one of the ‘greats' of Milanese design), with its increasing number of boutiques, including the brand new spaces of Moleskine and Tesla. From food giant Eataly Smeraldo in piazza XXV Aprile to the sought-after shopping and dining complex of corso Como, home to “10 Corso Como”, an oasis of high style, combining an art gallery, a design bookshop, a fashion boutique and a charming courtyard café, this is a truly ‘viby' district! If you're wondering about the eye-catching glass pyramid located nearby in Porta Volta, it's the new cultural headquarters of the Fondazione Giangiacomo Feltrinelli. We also recommend a visit to the UniCredit Pavilion, an innovative space designed by Milanese archistar Michele de Lucchi created to host exhibitions, concerts and events. We end our tour in the Tortona district, featuring an eclectic mixture of artistic boutiques and culture hubs including MUDEC-the Museum of Cultures (one of whose highlights includes Enrico Bartolini's twostarred Michelin restaurant) and the exclusive exhibition space of Armani/Silos.
SALES TIP If you've forfeited making important purchases while waiting for the sales to begin, then now is the time to indulge, but not before having obtained a few tips to guarantee bagging the best bargains. First and foremost, remember that discounts are only applied to collections already on sale at shops and not to new in-store arrivals. Moreover, it's important to bear in mind that
discounts are not fixed, depending on the individual policy of each shop. A suggestion, pay attention
to labels so that you know exactly what you're getting and, if you want an insider tip, don't only limit yourself to the shopping streets in the centre… if you avoid following the crowds, you'll be able to take advantage of a much wider choice!
la Rinascente flagship store
10 Corso Como
Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II