Fashion tour of Milan amidst treasure troves of history
Famously known as one of the big four fashion capitals, this northern Italian city is full of architecture, cultural spaces, and piazzas where you can’t help but mingle with the young, the rich, and the beautiful.
[↑] Arco della Pace (“Arch of Peace”) dates back to the 19th century and was designed by Italian architect Luigi Cagnola. When built, the neoclassical monument marked the place where the Strada del Sempione entered Milan. This road, which is still in use today, connects Milan to Paris through the Simplon Pass (an imaginary straight line) that crosses the Alps. This well-heeled area is one of the most popular centres of Milanese movida (“nightlife”), with a number of bars, pubs, restaurants, and discos.
[↑] Porta Nuova, which literally translates into “New Door,” is considered one of Italy’s most high-tech and international commercial districts. Milanese enjoy the area that runs from Corso Como, which is famous for the prestigious concept store Corso Como 10, to the “Isola” neighbourhood. Piazza Gae Aulenti, in the centre of Porta Nuova, is a public space filled with trendy restaurants, libraries, gelaterie, and architectural discoveries.
[↑] The Duomo Cathedral is the symbol of Milan. And the Piazza del Duomo (“Cathedral Square”) marks the centre of Milan, in both a geographic sense and because of its importance from an artistic, cultural, and social point of view. Referred to as Quadrilatero della Moda, which literally translates into “Fashion Square,” the high-end shopping district is characterised by numerous boutiques and retail outlets representing some of the world’s major fashion houses. Vogue magazine describes the area as “one of the most important fashion districts in the world.”
[↑] Milano Centrale is the main railway station of Milan and is the largest train station by volume in Europe. The building itself is a work of art if just for its roof, numerous sculptures, and exterior façade. The station has no distinct architectural style, but is a blend of many, particularly Liberty and Art Deco. From here you can quickly reach Lake Como in only 30 minutes. Alternatively, Frecciarossa high-speed trains whisk you in no time to Venice, Florence, or Rome.
[↑] The very modern Milan Metro and its five lines easily transport you to everywhere in the city. Most of the stations have LED information screens displaying the destination and wait time of coming trains. A recorded voice announces the direction of every approaching train and, at the platform, the name of the station. Above ground, hop on one of the vintage 1920s trams that still run and take a tour of Milan!
[↑] Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II is Italy’s oldest shopping mall and a major landmark in Milan. Housed within a four-storey double arcade in the centre of town, the Galleria is named after Victor Emmanuel II, the first king of the Kingdom of Italy. Considered one of “the” centres for luxury shopping in Milan, visitors can browse the boutiques along the likes of Prada and Louis Vuitton. On the famed rooftop, Fondazione Prada opened an exhibition space dedicated to photography and visual languages. And if that’s not enough glamour for you, the world-famous opera house La Scala is located at one end of the magnificent arcade.
[↑] Established in 1888, Parco Sempione (“Simplon Park”) is a large city park in the historic centre of Milan. The park is adjacent to the gardens of the beautiful Sforza Castle and to the Arch of Peace. The third prominent landmark in Parco Sempione is the Palazzo dell’Arte (“Palace of Art”), which currently houses the Triennale di Milano art expo.
Text and photos Alessandro Capoccia
Make-up artist Barbora Vrubelova
Models Marta, Aline, Nikol
Styling Dueminuti Milano, LuckyLu
Where to eat Al Fresco