Brera / 7 posts found


DESIGN WEEK – Our tips for you – 2. Brera Design District

Brera is one one the most stimulating hubs during the Design Week.
This year, Brera Design District celebrates its 10th anniversary, and the cobblestone streets of the picturesque neighborhood will host a wealth of initiatives and events.

Design Your Life

Design Your Life

The 2019 theme is “Design Your Life”, that draws inspiration from Bill Burnett and Dave Evans’ book “Designing Your Life: How to Build a Well-Lived, Joyful Life” (Alfred a Knopf Inc, September 2016). “Design your life” is a call to awareness: designers have been asked to be more committed to the sustainable impact of their work.

Our favourite project is definitely “Planetario”, by Cristina Celestino. In Brera Design Apartment, Celestino has designed a scenographic retrofuturistic interior project, featuring a new collection of carpets created for Besana Carpet Lab. It is a dreamy, unexpected home scenario inspired by the themes of space and its antithesis, the underwater world. Brera Design Apartment is in via Palermo 1, 3°floor, and is open until April 14 from 10 am to 7 pm.

We recommend to spend some time at the majestic Basilica di San Marco – gateway to Brera Design District – and in its historical cloisters, which have been turned into an enchanting urban garden thanks to dOT & ABLE TO. Green settings and outdoor solutions create an authentic oasis for everybody in the city center, where nature, design and beauty blend in offering unique views and relaxation.

If you happen to be in Milan with kids, they will love RoBOTL: a stately and massive 6 meters-tall installation located in piazza XXV Aprile. RoBOTL is the sustainability superhero, a symbol and warning that reminds us how important it is to safeguard the environment in which we live. The work is made of recycled plastic bottles and production scraps from the design industry, and is the official spokesperson to raise awareness to act in a conscious and responsible way, starting from the city in which we live. The project is signed by Timberland and Giò Forma, multi-award winning international studio made of designers, architects and artists, led by Cristiana Picco, Florian Boje e Claudio Santucci.

La Magnifica Fabbrica


Things to do in Milan this week – January 30-February 5.
The best things to do in Milan this week, including Music, Art, Museums, Shopping and Restaurants, chosen by Bella Milano Tours.

Pinacoteca di Brera

Pinacoteca di Brera

SUNDAY AT THE MUSEUM – As on every first Sunday of the month, most of museums of Milan (and the rest of Italy) will be open free on Jan 2. Pinacoteca di Brera (Brera Picture Gallery), Museum of Natural History, Museo del Risorgimento, Sforza Castle… there is a wide choice for everybody, but  this month we definitely recommend Galleria d’Arte Moderna, where at 6 pm your visit will be accompanied by the music of Divertimento Ensemble. According to weather forcasts, it may rain on Sunday: there is no best excuse to spend a day walking from one room to the other amongst artistic masterpieces.

ARTS & CRAFTS MARKET – On Saturday 2, in front of the ancient Basilica of Saint Eustorgio, the bi-monthly Little Market will welcome you with stalls full of quality handmade Art and Craft: antiques and vintage furniture, handmade accessories, fancy jewels. A treasure trove for everybody. From 9 am to 7 pm.

Chinese New Year in Milan

Chinese New Year in Milan

CHINESE NEW YEAR 2019 – Milan is the only Italian city with its own Chinatown, and a very peculiar one: along the busy Sarpi street, Chinese and local people have been living side by side for almost one century. Chinese New Year is on Feb 5, but celebrations will start from Sunday 3 and continue for the whole week. The epicentre will be of course in Sarpi street, but this year, for the first time, also the Fashion District will be involved in it: shop windows will be flooded with the red colour, and along corso Montenapoleone a special exhibition by the artist Liu Bolin, including photographs and performances, will surprise you. On Sunday 10 the climax: the traditional parade in the heart of Chinatown.

THE STORY OF LA SCALALa Scala Opera House is celebrating its 240-year-long life with an exhibition entitled “La Magnifica Fabbrica”. Videos, interactive screens, wooden models, Augmented Reality experiences: visitors will dive into the rich, past of La Scala and catch a glimpse of its future (that is, the new building at the back of the theatre which is being built in via Verdi). La Scala Theatre Museum, every day 9 am to 5.30 pm.

MUST DO – A private guided walking tour in Milan with us! This week we recommend the Cafés and Coffee Tour: come and discover our unique coffee tradition!

Bansky at Mudec


Things to do in Milan this week – January 9-16

The best things to do in Milan this week, including Music, Art, Museums, Shopping and Restaurants, chosen by Bella Milano Tours.

Fabrizio De André

Fabrizio De André

CANTATA ANARCHICAFabrizio De André was an Italian singer-songwriter,  or rather a poet who – like Jacques Brel and Leonard Cohen – put his own words to music. On the tenth anniversary of his death, January 11th, his fans will remember him with “Cantata anarchica“, a spontaneous gathering in Duomo square starting from 8 pm. Everybody is invited to join in singing and playing, and if you don’t know De André’s music, don’t worry: just enjoy the warm embrace of a crowd still passionately loving and missing this great artist.

SAINT ANTHONY BONFIRE - Saint Anthony is the patron saint of pets and livestock, and he is traditionally celebrated with a bonfire on January 17th. This year the bonfire will be anticipated on Sunday 13th at Cascina Linterno, from 3.30 pm until 7 pm, where a famers’ market will welcome visitors. During the afternoon the ceremony of the blessing of animals will be celebrated, and after sunset the fire will be kindled, accompanied by music, dances and vin brulé (mulled wine).

The easiest way to get to Cascina Linterno is by bus 67 from the metro station Bande Nere (Red Line).

FLEA MARKET – On Sunday 20th, the traditional Flea Market will flood with its stalls the narrow, cobblestone streets of the picturesque Brera district. Antiques and vintage furniture, handmade accessories, fancy jewels: a treasure trove for everybody. In via Brera, at the corner with via Fiori Chiari and via Fiori Scuri, from 8 am to 6.30 pm.

BANSKYThe art of Bansky. A visual protest is one of the most successful exhibition in Milan at the moment. Mudec museum is the first public Italian museum to host a monographic exhibition of this elusive and misterious artist, showcasing about 80 works including paintings, sculptures and prints, accompanied by objects, photographs, and videos, about 60 album and CD covers, which the artist himself curated, and about forty pieces of memorabilia (lithographs, stickers, prints, magazines, fanzines, tickets, promotional flyers), that retrospectively describe the work and thinking of Banksy.

And no, no painting will self-destruct during the exhibition.

La Scala Opera House

La Scala Opera House

OPERA – Remember Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman, desperately sobbing at the opera? You have a heart of stone, if you don’t shed your tears for the fate of Violetta in Verdi’s most celebrated work. La Traviata will be directed by Myung-Whun Chung at La Scala from January 11th. If you have no ticket, don’t worry: here you will find all info needed to purchase last-minute, super-cheap tickets.

MUST DO – A guided walking tour in Milan with us!
Brera market

Things to do in Milan this week – January 18-24

Things to do in Milan this week – January 18-24

The best things to do in Milan this week, including Music, Art, Museums, Shopping and Restaurants, chosen by Bella Milano Tours.

Die Fliedermaus at La Scala

Die Fliedermaus at La Scala

OPERA – An extraordinary debut at La Scala Opera House: Johann Strauss’ Die Fliedermaus is performed for the first time in Milan, conducted by Cornelius Meister and directed by Cornelius Obonya. It is such a funny, sparkling, surprising opera, or rather “operetta”, light opera, that in spite of being sung in German it can be enjoyed by really everybody. In any case, subtitles in English are provided. Find here more info about last minute tickets.

FREE – Saturday 20, at 9 pm, the choir “Amici del Loggione” will sing in Palazzina Libery, an Art Nouveau building located in the middle of a park. The address is Largo Marinai d’Italia. Palazzina Liberty used to be the headquarters of Dario Fo’s theatrical company, when the Nobel-awarded writer and playwriter was still considered by mainstream critics as a subversive agitator.

Sunday 21, at 5 pm, organ music is played in a magic location, the church of Saint Simpliciano, whose foundation dates back to the 4th century AD. It is located in Brera district, the fascinating neighborhood of Milan famous for its narrow streets of cobblestones, fine boutiques and cosy cafés.

FOODEataly means good food, and being housed in a former theatre it also means good music: every Wednesday at 6.30 pm, on Eataly stage, a jazz group will play while guests enjoy their aperitifs prepared by the Michelin-starred Alice restaurant. On January 24, the Bublitschki Band will entertain the audience with a mix of rithms from different cultures and traditions: Brazil, the Mediterranean, East Europe.

FLEA MARKET – Flea market may not be the exact definition for the antique-artisan-collectors market of Brera. Stalls will fill up of colours and scents the usually quiet Fiori Chiari, Madonnina and Formentini streets. Sunday 21, 10 am to 6 pm.

SPECIAL TIP – For cinema lovers, Anteo Palazzo del Cinema offers you the chance to enjoy fine food and film in the newly renovated Sala Nobel.  Usually movies in Italy are dubbed in Italian, unless the original version is played. This is the case for “Three billboards outside Ebbing, Missouri” (Saturday 20 and Sunday 21, 1 pm).

MUST DO – A guided walking tour in Milan with us! :-)



Bottega Brera

Shopping at the museum

We all love shopping at the museum: museum shops are full of artistic, contemporary and classic object to combine shopping and culture.

A new venue has been recently opened in Milan inside Brera Museum: “Bottega Brera”, consisting of 86 square meters full of books and design, with plenty of products exclusively designed for the museum. Bottega Brera is accessible from the main courtyard of Brera building and therefore open to anybody, not just visitors to the Picture Gallery.

But Brera is not just an amazing collection of masterpieces, including paintings by Mantegna, Bellini, Tintoretto, and Caravaggio. Brera, established at the end of the XVIII century, was conceived as a citadel of culture, a temple of Enlightment were science and humanities could live side by side. That is why in the same Brera building you may visit not just the pinacotheca but also an Astonomical Observatory, you will stroll along the regular flowerbeds of a Botanical Garden and you’ll browse through the ancient volumes kept in the Braidense Library.

Fornasetti for Brera

Fornasetti for Brera

At Bottega Brera you will find objects reprenting each of such institutions, and even original creations by the students of prestigious Brera Academy of Arts, also housed in this century-old building. Products range from fragrances based on Brera Rose – grown in the Botanical Garden – to Fornasetti tableware created by students of the Academy; from Trussardi limited edition foulards (by the way, Brera custodians wear Trussardi!), to children’s books by Bruno Munari, who opened his first didactic workshop for kids at Brera.

At the end of your visit to the museum and your shopping session at Bottega Brera, treat yourself with a cup of coffee at one of the nice cafès of Brera district. With its streets of cobblestones, fine art galleries, and elegant boutiques, it will be a highlight of your stay in Milan.

Sweet hearts by Bastianello

San Valentino a Milano

San Valentino a Milano…can you imagine anything more romantic? Your Cupid-guides are about to share with you the best tips for a perfect Valentine’s day.

Villa Reale Park

Villa Reale Park

Start your day with a lavish breakfast at Bastianello. This finely decorated Art Nouveau café is very popular with locals, but you will forget the crowd while sipping a creamy cappuccino and tasting a rich and tasty kipfel. Real treats for your heart!

Then, take a stroll along the elegant Corso Venezia, Stendhal’s favourite spot in Milan, where in the 19th century the aristocracy used to promenade. Turn left to via Palestro and reach the imposing façade of a Neoclassical urban villa.

A few meters before the main entrance, you will find the access to the park, Milan’s first English-style garden. Enter the park, regardless of the sign saying “Access to this park is reserved to children up to 12 years accompanied by adults”. The custodians will not stop you, unless you linger too long in the garden. But if you take your companion by the hand and remind them that it’s Valentine’s time, they will understand ;-)
Inside the park, keep left; let the sound of the waterfall guide you. Follow the path climbing behind the waterfall.

When you get to the top of the path, over the waterfall, stop, lean on the wooden fence, look and admire the elegant front of the villa, and enjoy the magic.

Tania Mazzoleni - Mad Zone

Tania Mazzoleni – Mad Zone

Now come back down to earth and slowly walk towards the glittering Fashion District, where we suggest to have lunch in a well hidden ancient court. At the Salumaio di Via Montenapoleone, you’ll taste a fine selection of cold cuts and the best Italian cheese.

If you happen to be in town on Saturday 11th, don’t miss a special Valentine’s event at Mad Zone, a colorful concept store in the heart of the artistic Brera district. Charming Tania Mazzoleni, founder of Mad Zone, will welcome you and your mate to a wonderland of surprises: get yourself a Love Passport, your heart’s identity card illustrated by an artist, wear a T-shirt personalized with your love message and get a free make-up session. If you are curious about love tips, ask for the “spicy corner” ;-) We did it!

For dinner you deserve one of the most fascinating views of the city. At Giacomo Arengario in Duomo square, book a table close to the big window and you’ll dine with the white façade of the Duomo right in front of your eyes. Isn’t this the perfect place for a proposal?


Your Cupid-guides

The Marriage of the Virgin

A great city for a short break? Come to Milan!

If you’re looking for a great city for a short break, follow the Telegraph’s advice: pick Milan!

The Marriage of the Virgin

The Marriage of the Virgin

In a recently published article, the British newspaper strongly recommends Milan not just for its shopping and food, but for its cultural sights.

What you can’t miss is the Pinacoteca di Brera, “one of the great museums in Italy, chock-a-block with paintings of the very highest quality”. Highlights include masterpieces such as The Marriage of the Virgin by Raffaello and seminal works by Mantegna, Piero della Francesca and Caravaggio just to mention a few of them.

Brera’s new director, British-Canadian James Bradburne, has injected further energy into the museum “organising new exhibitions and, adding much more detailed and prominent labelling”. Rooms are even painted in the distinctive colors of specific artistic periods, and paintings appear to jump off the wall due to the contrast and the enhanced lighting.

With a 10-minutes walk from Brera you may visit the Sforza Castle, which houses 8 collections including no less a masterpiece than the last sculpture by Michelangelo.

Did we mentioned also the Ambrosiana Library with Leonardo’s notebooks?

Book a walking tour with a local guide such as we are and you’ll fall in love with this city.