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Where to live in Milan

MilanMilan areas

Arco della Pace
Bicocca
Brera
Chinatown
Corso Como
Fiera
Isola
Milan 2
Milano S. Giulia project
Montenapoleone, Duomo
Navigli
Porta Magenta
Porta Nuova
Porta Romana
Porta Ticinese, S. Ambrogio
Porta Venezia, Corso Buenos Aires
Tortona, Solari

Milan


Description

Milan is still the heart of Italian fashion, design and finance, the gateway to Italy's industrial north. However, in recent years the city has lost some of its lustre and organisational flair. Anyone who has not visited Milan for several years will notice the difference; there is now a weary air about the city, instead of the bustling confidence of even a decade ago. The restoration of buildings and art treasures has fallen behind that in Rome.
The traffic is just as chaotic as in Italy's capital city and even with two airports and several train stations, travel in and out of the city can be difficult, especially in winter. However public transport within the city is excellent, thanks to the efficient metro and bus services.
There are few parks and sports facilities, perhaps because the Alps and the Italian lakes, with their winter and water sports, are only a couple of hours away. The choice of facilities for English-speaking expatriates is not as good as it is in Rome, with only four international schools, two English-speaking churches (one Roman Catholic and one Anglican) and two bookshops (see resources for addresses and telephone numbers). However, most north Europeans will feel more at home in Milan than in Rome. The city is within an easy drive of France, Switzerland, Austria and Germany and the history and efficiency of its neighbours is reflected in the way Milan goes about its business. The magnificent restoration of its cathedral (the duomo) and the on-going remodernisation of the central railway station in addition to two new major property developments, one in the heart of the city (between Porta Garibaldi railway station and Porta Nuova) and the other by the British architect Sir Norman Foster on the south eastern outskirts (Milano S. Giulia), could give this proud old city a new sense of purpose.

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Milan Areas
Arco della Pace
This is a very elegant, neat and rather characterless part of the city. It is northwest of the cathedral (Il Duomo) and overlooks Parco Sempione, Milan’s largest park. The streets are wide and lined with trees so t...
Bicocca
Once an old industrial area, Bicocca was redeveloped in the 1990s and is the centre for both the city’s new auditorium, Teatro degli Arcimboldi, and its new, state-run Bicocca university. Modern apartment blocks an...
Brera
This is the most elegant part of the city. In the winding streets north of the cathedral (Il Duomo) and La Scala opera theatre there are stately buildings, numerous excellent restaurants and up-market shops, selling ever...
Chinatown
A few streets north of Arco della Pace is the centre of Chinatown, in Via Paolo Sarpi. The first Chinese immigrants settled here at the end of world war two, opening mainly fabric and then leather shops, but in recent ye...
Corso Como
This has become one of the city’s fashionable nightlife centres. Here there are clubs, restaurants and trendy shops mixed with modern apartment buildings along Corso Como and adjoining streets. Corso Como itself is...
Fiera
A complete contrast to nearby Arco della Pace, this is a solid no-nonsense commercial area centred around the large exhibition space, Fiera Milano. Here there are streets lined with 1950s apartment blocks, a few essentia...
Isola
West of Milan's Central Station and North of the City center, you find the 19th Century quarters of Porta Nuova (formerly Porta Comasina or Porta Garibaldi, also known as the Varesine, as there used to be a station for t...
Milan 2
Also known as Segrate, this is a self-contained community which came into existence thanks to ex-prime minister and media magnate Silvio Berlusconi. It is close to Milan’s Linate airport and is a favourite zone for...
Milano S. Giulia project
Designed by British architect Sir Norman Foster, this new area on the southeast outskirts of Milan will be finished in 2011. Once the site of petrochemical plants and a steel mill, it is ideally connected by metro and ma...
Montenapoleone, Duomo
This is the smart shopping zone of the city, one of the world’s most sought-after and famous fashion centres, with all the buzz for which this hub is famous. Trendy people move in and out of the shops in the Quadri...
Navigli
This is the charming area built around the city’s once vital system of canals. It is now a trendy place to live and the rents are less expensive than along Corso di Porta Ticinese, which is slightly closer to the c...
Porta Magenta
There is a quiet orderliness about this area of the city. Here the streets are much wider than in the centre around the cathedral (Il Duomo) and the houses are set back from the road. Via Vercelli is a busy shopping stre...
Porta Nuova
Sandwiched between Corso Como and Porta Venezia and bordering Montenapoleone, Porta Nuova is quite different from all three, being quieter and more elegant. The former industrial area to its north, which stretches past C...
Porta Romana
This is a mainly residential area with several important thoroughfares running across it and into the historic centre of the city. It is laid out around local shops, restaurants and well-kept leafy squares but no parks. ...
Porta Ticinese, S. Ambrogio
To the southwest of the centrally located cathedral (Il Duomo), this area is characterised by mediaeval-looking little streets with low-rise apartment buildings set around pretty courtyards. Corso di Porta Ticinese is fu...
Porta Venezia, Corso Buenos Aires
This is a prime shopping area without the elegance, or the prices, of Montenapoleone. Porta Venezia is the crossroads of three of the city’s different worlds: the elegance of Porta Nuova; the bustle of Corso Buenos...
Tortona, Solari
Tortona or Solari (both names are used) is one of the up-and-coming areas of Milan. It hit the headlines a few years ago when it became the unofficial location for Milan’s famous design fair, whose official locatio...
Meteo Milano

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