Milano: More than the Duomo

Publish Time:2019-09-12 13:56:28Source:Milan Tourism Bureau

【Introduction】:You think you already know everything about Milano? Below are just a few of Milano’s attractions that may surprise you.

Fondazione Prada

Located in a former 20th-century distillery in Milan’s southern district, this 19,000 sq. meter exhibition space creates new spatial typologies for exhibiting and sharing art. Designed by the OMA architecture firm under the direction of Rem Koolhaas, seven existing buildings were combined with three new structures — preserving the old and creating new spaces that flow seamlessly together. The architectural creativity of the structure combined with its wide array of projects and exhibitions have been capturing visitor and resident interest since its 1993 opening. Permanent exhibitions include installations by Robert Gobert and Louise Borgeois (The Haunted House), Thomas Demand (Grotesque Process), Dan Flavin (Un d and Atlas). In addition, the Prada Collection put contemporary artworks on display there between 1960 and 2016.

Piazza Gae Aulenti

If Piazza Duomo is the historic heart of Milan, then Piazza Gae Aulenti represents the new face of the city — symbol of a changing Milan looking ahead to the future. Inaugurated in December 2012, the Piazza Gae Aulenti has quickly become one of Milan’s essential spaces for residents and visitors alike. This 80 meters diameter circular plaza sits at the heart of the Porta Nuova development, situated between three of Milan’s most exciting neighborhoods: Garibaldi, Isola and Varesine. Covered in solar panels that provide power to three adjacent buildings, the piazza’s infinity fountains, iron, wood and glass provide a stunning new gateway to Milan.


The CityLife Shopping District is the largest urban shopping district in Italy; it is surrounded by the second largest public park in Milan, with three stunning brand new skyscrapers designed by Zaha Hadid, Arata Isozaki and Daniel Libeskind. Entirely car-free with road access and underground parking, the district is situated in what had been the old trade fairgrounds. CityLife is at the center of a complex and very successful urban renovation project that has completely re-invented this part of the city. The CityLife Shopping District features three shopping areas that bring together more than one hundred retail premises. It includes 80 stores, a supermarket, 20 restaurants and bars and 7 movie screens with a total of 1,200 seats. CityLife offers a truly unique place to shop and enjoy leisure time and lifestyle activities in a modern, spacious environment.

The Milan shopping experience, formidable in itself, has been greatly expanded by CityLife, which has connected modern architecture and open spaces. CityLife is one of Milan’s foremost global attractions and well worth a visit.

Pirelli Hangar Bicocca

One of the largest exhibition spaces in Europe, Pirelli HangarBicocca is a former industrial plant that has been converted into a crucible for producing and promoting contemporary art. A nonprofit foundation established in 2004, this dynamic center for experimentation and discovery covers 15,000 sq. meters and presents major solo shows every year by Italian and international artists, in addition to hosting cultural programs throughout the year. Admission is completely free, with guides on hand to answer questions and offer assistance. One of Anselm Kiefer’s most important site-specific works, The Seven Heavenly Palaces 2004-2015, was originally commissioned for the opening of the Hangar and is on permanent display. This impressive work and the eerie atmosphere that it conveys to the beholder are reason enough for a visit.

Isola Quarter

Originally separated from the rest of Milan by railroad tracks, the Isola district – literally “island” – is a post-war neighborhood formerly inhabited by factory and other blue-collar workers. One of the city’s best-kept secrets until recently, the area is being revitalized with new buildings and residents. Nevertheless, Isola remains bohemian and proud of its avant-garde tradition, and the influence of the resident creatives and artists still permeates the area. The quarter is now home to an impressive and eclectic boutique scene, with vintage shops and restaurants, alternative fashion shops and interior design studios. Quite a break from the Milan center’s luxury shopping districts and the glitzy areas of five-star hotels,but quintessentially Milanese.

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