10 Corso Como
10 Corso Como, Porta Nuova
You can easily spend an entire afternoon—or a few of them—perusing the art galleries and design and fashion boutiques at this mega concept shop. It’s become the authority of Milan’s retail scene, and a visit here is an education in what’s currently on trend. Have a cappuccino at the picture-perfect café for a midafternoon pick-me-up.
Piazza Croce Rossa, Brera
Giorgio Armani is something of a fashion god in Milan—and everywhere around the world for that matter. And his presence is felt everywhere, especially at his headquarters. The complex includes Armani-branded everything (a hotel, a café, a florist, and curiously, a chocolate shop). There’s also an Armani bookstore, which carries a huge range of fashion, art, and design books, including limited editions and prints. It’s heaven for book lovers and anyone interested in beautiful objects.
Via Varese, 14, Porta Nuova
American design duo Craig Bassam and Scott Fellows recently opened their first retail shop in the Brera district, showcasing one beautiful object after another. It carries a range of their own furniture creations, as well as their line of shoes and sunglasses (Fellows was previously the creative director at the Swiss luxury fashion company Bally).
Via Bocca di Leone, 32, Campo Marizo
Dad to Delfina and the man who inspired her to go into jewelry design in the first place, Bernard Delettrez has been churning out surrealistic, mixed-medium jewelry—sculls, bones, insects, and reptiles—for decades. His shop, while small, feels more like a gallery than a retail space, with a wide range of his work displayed in a series of museum-style cases.
Via di Monserrato, 35, Centro Storico
This space, founded by two of Italy’s top Creative Directors is a concept store meets atelier, that celebrates luxurious handmade items and old-school craft.
Via del Governo Vecchio, 67, Centro Storico
Take one look at Delfina Delettrez’s artfully edgy—yet somehow totally trend-proof—gemstone-laden pieces, and it’s no surprise at all that she’s a Fendi through and through. Tucked into a side street near the Piazza Navona, her teeny shop is set up to look like the inside of an intricate jewelry box (the space housed a pharmacy in its past life), complete with mirrored walls, ivory-colored pharmacist’s cabinets, and insect-themed curiosities—undoubtedly a nod to the creepy-crawly motifs of some of her more elaborate creations.
Bocca di Leone, 46, Campo Marzio
A one-stop shop for all things fashion and design (look for unique mid-century furniture, textiles, and lighting), plus flowers, candles, and home fragrance. If you want to linger, don’t miss the small tea house and oyster bar in the back. There’s a second outpost in Milan.
Via del Babuino, 81, Campo Marizo
We like to think of this as the Italian equivalent of say, a Barneys, though it’s a bit smaller in size. There’s both a men’s and women’s flagship on Via Babuino, plus a few smaller shops scattered throughout the city; you’ll find an unerring edit of Alaia, Tom Ford, Alexander McQueen, and the Row—albeit with a Roman bent. (The Céline assortment, unsurprisingly, is really good.) For the guys, they bet big on more tailored suiting looks from Thom Browne, plus sharp jackets from Givenchy and Valentino sneakers.
Via de 'Bardi 17, Florence
There’s no better spot to pick up leatherbound journals and writing paper than at Il Torchio, which sells carta marmorizzata—sheets that are thicker than average paper and slightly marbled. (A resin or glue helps attach floating pigments to the paper, and once out of the water the pigments are combed or sponged to create patterns.) For those who appreciate the art of a handwritten letter on quality stationery—and we do—Il Torchio should be an essential stop.
Via del Leone, 21, Campo Marizo
Iosselliani’s elaborately beaded, multi-chained, rainbow-hued jewelry (both costume and fine) are statement pieces at their best. Conceived and crafted right here in Rome by a (married) couple of design-savvy jewelers, the artful rings, bracelets, and necklaces make for excellent keepsakes to bring home. The moody wood-and-mirrors flagship is also where you can see pieces from their home décor collection.
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