Between 2009 and 2011, I used to live in Milan, the capital of Italian finance and fashion.
I have a clear memory of my time there and I remember a city that, in my Londonised eyes, struggled to be original, interesting or remarkable.
But four years have gone by and last weekend, when I visited again, a new, fresh, strong, memorable, reinvigorated and sexy Milan welcomed me back.
For once, I was positively impressed by the amount of possibilities available, but mainly by the people I’ve met.
– DREAM –
With thousands of options, it’s really hard to pick the right place when visiting Milan, but with its excellent service, well-deserved five stars and prime location, it is impossible not to choose the Dorchester Collection’s Principe di Savoia.
Here you can spoil yourself and collect unforgettable memories of your weekend. You won’t regret it, I promise.
– BUT FIRST, COFFEE –
Every single day should start with a good cuppa and Milan’s coffee-scene has also deeply changed since I was living there. It’s now filled with gorgeous little, independent places that offers a variety of beans and the most amazing pastry choices. Make sure to try the places listed in the gallery below at least and find your own favourites!
– EXPLORE –
Milan isn’t a big city, but for a first-time visitor, it might be hard to find the best parts as they are not so famous or easy to find. Make sure to spare some time to explore these:
– EAT & DRINK –
You (almost) can’t go wrong with food in Milan, as it’s recently became a great competitor to its more famous foodie “sister”, Rome. In fact, despite the thousands of sushi places available at every corner, there are loads of interesting local and national renewed chefs that have chosen Milan for their restaurants. I loved the ones listed below.
– EXTRA –
And, if you do visit Milan by the end of October 2015, make sure to get a ticket to the Expo2015. Despite the endless critics, pointless destructions and stupid fights against this event, as a “foreigner”, I only saw a huge positive impact to a city that was often merely considered a grey place for business. I was looking at the expressions of young and old people while walking through the different pavilions and I only saw smiles, amazement and heard interesting conversations (ok, someone was also complaining about the heat and the queues, but not many…)
For certain people, Italians and not, this around-the-world trip in a day (or two) could be the first, but also the last one they will ever make. Of course, it wouldn’t never be like travelling for real, but for some it could be the best (and cheapest) option available to see, taste, explore and mostly, learn about the world.
The overall concept of food culture, food waste and the zero hunger challenge by the UN and promoted at the EXPO gives you a sense of the meaning of it all. The meaning, dear friends, is to learn, to look beyond our often selfish selves and think about others. The meaning of it all is to help each other. As always.
In this case, at the EXPO2015, by trying not to waste food and share what we have.
This was the message, and among all the contradictions and accuses, I believe that Pavillon Zero and Switzerland, managed to hit it on point.
So, Italians, I know it’s in your nature, but stop complaining for once, and enjoy what good is there. Till it lasts.
There is so much to see there, so make sure to mark your favourites and bring a good dose of patience (and water) for the long queues.
I promise, what you will experience and learn, will be worth the wait.
My Top Five (on top of Pavillon Zero, the best of all) are:
Brazil – UAE – Switzerland – Austria – Kazakhstan
Note: I was a guest of Principe di Savoia. All views are my own.
The picture of Ristorante Ratana‘ is taken by the restaurant and the picture of Cafe Gorille is taken by MilanoSecret.