Set your sights a little higher in Italy’s fashion capital: at these stylish rooftop and terraced establishments you can enjoy your dinner or drinks whilst taking in the Milan skyline and watching the sun set over the city.
Bar, Restaurant, Italian
Owned by fashion house Dsquared2 and furnished by Studio Dimore (the globally renowned design duo celebrated for their period-inspired maximalism) Ceresio7 is one of the most stylish locations in the city. The bar, restaurant and pool are located in the penthouse of a skyscraper with unparalleled views of the city. Elegance and glamour aside, watching the sunset over Milan is what makes aperitivo at Ceresio7 great. The venue is exclusive and expensive so you can draw your own conclusion about the clientele.
Watch the sun set over Parco Sempione at Terrazza Triennale
Terrazza Triennale is the on-site restaurant at La Triennale di Milano, Milan’s design museum. It has a modern steel and glass conservatory suspended over the Parco Sempione with a spectacular view of the Castello Sforzesco. Visitors can enjoy fine cuisine prepared by Michelin-starred chef Stefano Cerveni. The chef offers great classics with a modern personal touch while remaining faithful to the core concept behind the Italian cuisine: high-quality raw materials and passion.
Boscolo is the 8th-floor rooftop terrace bar and restaurant of the luxury hotel Palazzo Matteotti (DA Hotels). It is located just behind the Duomo but feels far removed from the chaos of the central piazza. The tables on the terrace are set with white linen and surrounded by greenery creating a tranquil space from which to admire the Milan skyline. The classic Italian menu celebrates seasonal recipes and also offers exquisite, freshly baked pastries.
Tuscan-born chef Giacomo Bulleri, now 92, arrived in Milan in the 1950s and has built a small food empire in the city. Giacomo Arengario is one of his cherished restaurants (alongside Da Giacomo in the Porta Venezia/San Babila neighbourhood) and is located within the celebrated Museo Novecento on Piazza del Duomo. The design, by Laura Sartori Rimini and Roberto Peregalli, is a decadent tribute to Art Deco with intricately painted wood-panelled walls, aged mirrors and coiffured ceiling. Giacomo Anrengario is renowned for its seafood (apparently the king crab pasta is a long-standing favourite with regulars) as the view from the outdoor terrace. After visiting the museum, which houses Milan’s finest collection of 20th-century Italian art, relax with a drink and enjoy the view of the cathedral and then finish with some of the finest 21st-century Italian cuisine.
Bar, Boutique Hotel Restaurant, Cafe, Cocktail Bar, Italian, $$$
Take the lift to the 10th floor of the beautiful Brian & Barry building in Piazza San Babila and you will find Terazza 12, a lounge bar with a decked rooftop terrace. It has a vintage flair with patterned rugs and furniture set among potted plants. It is an ideal place to start your evening – have aperitivo and watch the sun set over the city – but is also cosy enough to make it perfect for a nightcap.
Located in the beautiful and historic Galleria Vittorio Emanuele 1, the terrace at Duomo 21 is an iconic aperitivo location in Milan. It offers brilliant views of Piazza del Duomo and because it is open from 11am until late, it makes a great sightseeing pit-stop. The decor and vibe is not the most refined, probably because it’s mostly frequented by tourists, but the architecture and view definitely compensate. Order one of the signature martinis and relax under a shady umbrella whilst you admire the bustling square below. If you fancy it, Duomo21 also has a restaurant serving lunch and dinner.
Terrazza Aperol is the flagship of one of the ultimate Italian aperitifs, the Aperol Spritz, and the interior is an unapologetic homage to the drink – inside at the lounge bar, you are transported back to the 1970s with curvaceous orange and grey furniture, low-hanging orange lamps and the ‘groovy’ plasma-like bar. Like Duomo21 it is also has a prime spot within Galleria Vittorio Emanuele 1, and the terrace offers unparalleled views of the Duomo. The restaurant serves Italian classics with a twist, such as ossobuco alla milanese in gremolata, or double fillet of gilthead with poppy seeds, cherry tomatoes and chopped leccine olives and capers on potato. Aperitivo hour starts at 6pm.