However, the past decade saw Milan casting off its old image with a fast-changing urban landscape, which includes modern skyscrapers and lush green spaces, setting it apart from the other Italian cities.
An increasing number of holidaymakers around the world are making their way to Milan for its balance of storied elegance and forward thinking-ethos. This, coupled with the city’s long-standing name as the country’s fashion capital, makes it an even more compelling reason to visit.
Here, discover the pure, unadulterated glamour in this sophisticated city with our recommended picks for some of the most fashionable hotels in the area.
Palazzo Parigi is one of Milan’s swankiest hotels — complete with sweeping staircases, swinging chandeliers and artwork that combine the best of Parisian and Milanese designs. Each of its 98 rooms and suites come fitted with a balcony that looks out to the city’s historic centre. For views unlike any other, book the Duomo Suite, which looks out directly to the Duomo di Milano. Rooms are all lavishly fashioned with antique furniture, sculptures and works of art that add to an air of elegance that the hotel brings. Clarins bath amenities are also available to all guests. Tired visitors can pay a visit to the hotel’s Grand Spa, fitted with seven distinct treatments rooms and a range of wellness programs, perfect for anyone to relax and recharge.
Galleria Vittorio Emanuele is a vast arcade in the very centre of Milan right next to the ornate Duomo di Milano, and Galleria Vik is on the uppermost floor of this recognisable landmark. The arcade is most known not just for its range of fashion flagships, but also its regal proportions, stunning mosaic floors and a soaring glass roof. Paying homage to its location, each of the 90 rooms and suites in Galleria Vik has its own distinct style and character — a result that comes from working with different artists from all over the world. Some rooms are designed with a little more artistic flair, with maximalist prints and patterns, while others are more subtle and minimalist with its makeup. Make sure to take a pit stop at Vikissimo, the hotel’s own restaurant and bar that serves hearty Italian cuisine against the backdrop of the Galleria.
Hotel Viu Milan is the definition of sleek and contemporary. When guests arrive, they will immediately notice the lobby decked out in designer furniture, notably from Italian firm Molteni&C. Each of its 124 modern rooms and suites has also been designed by Molteni&C’s artistic director, Nicola Gallizia. The moody wood panellings complement the beige-coloured furniture, complete with contemporary art and flushed floor-to-ceiling windows. The biggest draw of the hotel is not just its beautiful designs, but the first-ever rooftop pool in Milan. Spend the day by the pool soaking up some Vitamin D, or watch the sun go down against the backdrop of some panoramic city views.
Housed in a former 15th-century convent, Four Seasons Hotel Milan is flanked by exclusive designer boutiques in downtown Milan, perfect for any fashionista. Each of its 118 elegant rooms is set around a beautiful cloistered courtyard that was once a monastic garden. Inside, the interiors are decked in classy designs that feature Murano chandeliers and Fortuny fabrics that add elements of luxe to the establishment. Chocolate lovers will fall in love with the hotel’s very own Chocolate Room: it is home to a tempting selection of pralines, cakes, biscuits and puddings for any guests who need a quick pick-me-up. If you’re looking to relax after buying your luggage’s weight in clothes, head straight to the property’s Urban Spa. Designed by the famed Patricia Urquiola, the spa is fitted with a range of experiences, including the coveted 80-minute Gold fashion in Milan by Black Pearl treatment.
With Italian luxury brand Bulgari in its name, one can be sure that this establishment is an opulent option for any traveller. The high-end hotel is a six-minute walk from La Scala theatre and a short kilometre from the Duomo. It is set in a tastefully renovated 18th-century palazzo, coupled with a 4000 square metre garden that extends to the nearby Botanical Garden. Clean lines and warm tones set the scene for each of its 58 rooms and suites, most with leafy verdant views. Feeling hungry? Dine at Il Ristorante-Niko Romito, which serves contemporary Italian cuisine with a menu from three Michelin-starred Chef Niko Romito. Selections here include exquisite Italian antipasti like the creamy burrata cheese with bottarga and the creamed salt cod.
Mandarin Oriental Hotel Milan is set within four adjoining 18th-century buildings and takes inspiration from classic 1940s Milanese interior decor. Its discreet entrance is on a side-street in the busy fashionable Quadrilatero district, making it a quiet oasis away from the hubbub of central Milan. Leafy courtyards and mellow-coloured walls form the foundation of this Italian sanctuary, complete with silk fabrics and other Asian-inspired details that echo the hotel group’s heritage. 104 chic rooms and suites are spread over five floors, each outfitted with custom Italian fittings. Guests from all around the world come to dine at the hotel’s two-Michelin starred restaurant, Seta, dishing out exciting, contemporary takes on classic Italian cuisine. After dinner, get your tipples at the Mandarin Bar & Bistrot and be blown away by the cocktails from the award-winning mixologists that will keep you buzzed throughout the night.