Tom Dixon has been a highlight of Milan Design Week for many years and now he has created a permanent installation in the city with the opening of The Manzoni, which will also be his first dedicated showroom in mainland Europe. Three new collections were showcased for the opening - my favourite being “Spring” - a series of pendant lights made from ribbons of stainless steel, creating beautiful swirling patterns of light. This was one of the most in-demand dining experiences in town, so I will be booking a table well in advance of my next visit to Milan!
Warning - for anyone even slightly fashion addicted, Milan is rather dangerous! For a serious fix of designer brands at discounted pricing, I can highly recommend the Serravalle Designer Outlets on the outskirts of Milan - a village style shopping outlet with a gorgeous selection of major Italian brands from Gucci (my definite favourite), Prada, Versace, Dolce & Gabbana and many other iconic international brands. My top shopping tip - take your passport with you to get the documentation necessary to claim your tax back at the airport.
No one should leave Milan without having seen Leonardo Da Vinci’s The Last Supper, his largest and often regarded greatest artwork. Housed in the convent of Santa Maria delle Grazie, the painting was finished in 1498 and has a rich history, including “miraculously” surviving a World War II bombing. Entries to view the masterpiece are hard to come by and strictly timed, so make sure you book well in advance.
In all the crowds, rush and sensory-stimulation of Design Week, I think one of the best things one can do is simply to sit outdoors in Milan’s April sun, to contemplate and reflect - while enjoying an aperitivo of course, preferably an Aperol Spritz.
Schneider Electric ran a global competition for architects and designers who had recently completed a project specifying their product. Kirsten Ford Design was selected as the New Zealand winner by an international judging panel. Kirsten and her client travelled to Milan, Italy in April to attend the 58th annual Salone Internazionale del Mobile, one of the largest shows on the global design calendar where the biggest international designers reveal what they’ll be launching in 2019/2020. See the winning submission here.