In town for Design Week and have a couple of free hours to spare? One of our senior graphic designers, Vania Viscardi, has lived in Milan for 12 years. Here, she shares her favorite hometown spots.
"My home neighborhood goes by the name of ‘Isola’, and it’s exactly that—an urban island. Hemmed in on two sides by the Garibaldi train station and the rail tracks, Isola is an island in the physical sense of the word. It’s cut off from its busy surroundings of Garibaldi, Corso Como and the gleaming Porta Nuova skyscrapers. Isola is the latest neighborhood to partake in Design Week as Isola Design District."
Where to eat
For a nice Neapolitan pizza, try Nisida Pizzeria, via Porro Lambertenghi 19, Tel. +39 02 9737 8447
For an old pizzeria that is still popular, head to Pizzeria Fontana, Tel. +39 02 668 4735
For vegetarian food and fish, Capra e Cavoli, Via Pastrengo 18, Tel. +39 02 8706 6093
For a nice brunch, go to Les Pommes Bistro, Via Pastrengo, 7, Tel. +39 02 8707 4765
Pizzeria Berberè, one of Berberè’s strong points is the tasting menu, Via sebenico 21, Tel +39 02 36707820
For traditional Milanese dishes, head to Ratanà, which offers a contemporary ambience in an older building with garden, Via Gaetano de Castillia, 28, Tel. +39 02 8712 8855
Places to see
Take in the sunset at Piazza Gae Aulenti
See the vertical forest at Via Gaetano de Castilia 9
Shop at the Saturday morning food market at piazza Minniti for really fresh fish and on via Gariglaino for great gorgonzola goat cheese
Pop by the Santa Maria della Fontana Church in Piazza Santa Maria alla Fontana
Where to have a drink
Frida, Via Pollaiuolo 3
Surlì, Via Genova Thaon di Revel 12
Crank, Via Pastrengo 2
The Botanical Club, Via Pastrengo 11
Cafè Gorille, Via Gaetano de Castilia 20
Take a walk
My city tour starts at Fonderia Napoleonica Eugenia and takes you to the Brera district.
If you combine all of these spots, you have a lovely walk of a couple of hours, taking you from the newest area of Milano to the ancient, romantic neighborhood of Brera.
Download the locations directly to your phone here and explore our city. Buon divertimento!
Frida is one of the places that, for me, defines the spirit of my home neighborhood, Isola—the latest of Milan’s districts to join Design Week. You can have a nice coffee, beer or a glass of Spritz in this cool bar that has a courtyard full of plants in the middle of the city. Also peek in the nearby shop “Particelle Complementari” that sells handmade clothes and nice jewelry as well as some interesting vintage clothes.
Piazza Gae Aulenti
Named after the Milanese female architect, this piazza is a great spot to admire the new Milanese skyline.
Piazza Gae Aulenti
Corso Como 10
This concept store combines art, design and fashion, creating a really special atmosphere. The bookshop carries a selection of new releases and classics on art, architecture, design, literature, graphics and fashion, with a focus on photography.
Corso Como 10
Good place to scout for nice, affordable and interesting design finds.
Piazza XXV Aprile 10
One of the best food selections I have ever seen. Eataly is the largest Italian marketplace in the world, comprising a variety of restaurants, food and drink counters, a bakery and a cooking school.
Piazza XXV Aprile 12
La Conca dell’Incoronata Leonardo’s Sluice Gate
You’ll find the Milanese canals in Navigli. Once upon a time they ran through the entire city, just like in Venice. Leonardo studied how to connect two of the biggest canals in order to connect not only the two opposite parts of the city, but also to connect the two biggest rivers of Lombardy (Adda and Ticino). At the Conca dell’Incoronata you can see the remains of one sluice gate, which had an improvement—a small hatch in the lower part operable from street level, which helped to better regulate the water flow—studied by Leonardo.
Via San Marco 45
A great spot in Milan for lunch, this cafe was originally a flower shop. It’s also perfect for coffee and cake!
Via Montebello 7