La Rinascente is the Harrods or Saks of Milan, bringing together luxury brands across all departments under one swanky roof. Given Milan’s design heritage and prowess, it is fitting that the department store has an entire floor titled the ‘Design Supermarket’ featuring big names in international design. If you are looking for an Italian memento, pick from many classic Italian design icons from the past 60 years: Morano glass by Venini, whacky kitchenware by Alessi, and so much more.
Rinascente, Piazza del Duomo, Milan, Italy +39 02 88521
If you’re looking for a design piece and want something more unique, then head to Corso Italia where cult brand Studio Dimore has opened a collection showroom. The duo behind Studio Dimore is known for period-inspired maximalism and their work can be seen at important addresses all of the world, including stores for Fendi, Hermès and Aesop. You’ll be dying to take home all of the furniture, but there are many suitcase-friendly items on offer too – exquisite cushions, objets d’art, lamps and vases.
Studio Dimore Collection Studio, Corso Italia, 1, Milan, Italy +39 02 8909 2704
Corraini Editions is a publishing house and an art gallery, which now has several dedicated books shops in Italy, including one on via Savona in Milan. Its publishing branch was established to explore links between art, design, graphic design, publishing and photography, and the results are beautiful – every Corraini Editions publication is specially crafted by artists, illustrators and designers in close collaboration with the authors. The books are complemented by a small range of designer decorative objects and printed matter so it is a great place to find something special for your coffee table or walls.
Corraini 121, Via Savona, 17/5, Milan +39 02 36 58 41 19
Whether you enjoy dining out at restaurants or sampling salami at local macellerias, everyone can agree that one of the best things about travelling in Italy is the food and wine. Peck is the ultimate foodie destination in Milan. It opened in 1883 as a shop for fine smoked meats and salmon, and has since become the most prestigious delicatessen in the city. The abundant and colourful counters spread across three floors, offering everything from chocolate to crustaceans. And then there is the wine cellar. The supermarket Eataly is a slightly more affordable alternative. Eataly originated in Turin in 2007 with the aim of distributing sustainably and responsibly sourced Italian produce. In other words, offering artisanal quality food at reasonable prices.
Visit either shop and return home with a delicious hamper full of regional specialties. For example, Lombardian sparkling wine, Franciacorta D.O.C.G, locally brewed ale, Sicilian bottarga (cured fish roe which is amazing grated on pasta) and Piedmontese Gianduiotto chocolates, organic cold press olive oil and any number of cured salamis. Obviously bear in mind how far you are travelling and whether you can bring the food items through customs!
Peck, Via Spadari, 9, Milan, Italy, +39 02 802 3161
Eataly, Piazza Venticinque Aprile, 10, Milan, Italy +39 02 4949 7301
You’ve got no room in your suitcase and no money left in your wallet, so you’re looking for the traditional novelty souvenir – a naff fridge magnet, a funny teatowel, a lewd postcard. As with all European cities, there is no shortage of these kind of shops in the vicinity of major attractions. If you are passing through Parco Sempione look for a tabacchi-type booth called Milan Leo Souvenirs, or when you visit Piazza del Duomo pop into Fiori Souvenirs.