The Perfect Day in Milan~the Cheap and the Chic

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Travel Features >> The Perfect Day in Milan~the Cheap and the Chic

The Perfect Day in Milan~the Cheap and the Chic

March 05, 2014

Milan, the Mecca of shopping and style is interpreted by many as the lifestyle city for the rich and famous. However, you will be pleasantly surprised to learn it is possible to enjoy a perfect “cheap n chic” Italian day at Milan. Flavored with history, culture, dining and retail options, here are a few suggestions, which, though glamorous, are less likely to break the bank!

In the Morning
There’s no better way to start your day than a little morning constitutional, and in Milan the best place to head is Parco Sempione. Take a jog around the Arena Civica or even spend an entire day exploring all the park has on offer, from the art on display at the Palazzo dell’Arte to the incredible architecture of the Arco della Pace and the Castello Sforzesco. Many of the attractions in the park are free; so start your day the economical way!

Mid-morning shopping
Since 1919, Milan has secured her position as an important fashion destination. Home to Prada, Missoni and many more luxury brands, shopping at the high fashion stores found around Via Montenapoleone is the ultimate dream of many a visitor. But if you’re more in the market for lower priced goods, go vintage. Pick up some unique items at Il Salvagente, and Superfly where one is assured of high quality but less of the high-prices. Vintage Delirium is a famous spot for Milan’s designers as the go-to for inspirational vintage pieces. Although many of the pieces seem a little expensive, the owner will convince you that vintage can never be as expensive as the newer items. So go ahead and indulge in a piece of fashion history without feeling shortchanged.

The odd libation as the sunsets
All that retail therapy calls for a celebration with a little pre-dinner cocktail at one of Milan’s many cocktail bars. Happy hour stretches from 6-9pm and heading to Bulgaria for the expertly made cocktails served alongside luxurious nibbles will give you the true taste of glamour. Economical drinks are not too common in Milan, but their fantastic happy hours give it a more affordable twist. Most bars although expensive on paper offer their own deals so one shouldn’t have to break the bank for an evening’s drinks. There are some spots that are popular with the locals so ask around, specifically your expert tour guide. A good haunt for local intellectuals is the Parisian bar La Belle Aurora, which is a little less opulent but incredibly charming and perfect for a little aperitif.

Next on the agenda is a fantastic dinner and the very fact that you’re in Italy promises scrumptious portions of food. You can find the utterly delectable and the perfectly authentic in Milan. Restaurant suggestions are plentiful and many include a huge waiting list (hold on to your appetite patiently for six months to get a table at the Michelin starred D’O). For something a little different head to Clandestine, a playful takes on the traditionally Italian menu. Again, economically priced restaurants are few and far between. However a good plan is to take advantage of the set menus on offer; other than this get you a pizza or a delicious panino. There’s also a good quality chain called Pastarito that offers great value food for when you need to catch something quickly.

In the Evening…Catch a Show
End your action packed incredible day in Milan with a cultural flavour. Many a Milan Tour with Local Private Guide will recommend the famous opera house La Scala as worth the splurge and for most, a once in a lifetime occasion. At the other spectrum of the budget make your way to the Duomo. Climb to the top of the pristinely white cathedral for stunning views that are operatic but without the price tag.

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