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Milan Design Week

Salone del Mobile in Milan: the districts and events not to be missed at Fuorisalone

route on foot
2 days
Number of Stages

The Salone del Mobile and the Fuorisalone are among the most anticipated events in Milan's annual calendar. During Milan Design Week, the city is buzzing with creative energy and projected towards the future, with special attention to social, economic, and environmental sustainability.

The Salone del Mobile usually takes place during the month of April at the Milan Fair in Rho, which is 20 minutes by metro from the Central Station and an hour by train from Malpensa, but it is the entire city that serves as a stage for the Fuorisalone, an event that takes place throughout the city concurrently with the Salone and features the exhibition of design elements and actual installations in various districts. Here's an itinerary, district by district, to discover the key events from the city center to the outskirts, when Milan becomes an "open-air museum" and creatively reimagines its urban space. Are you ready to discover what to see at the Fuorisalone?

Day 1

5Vie Art + Design, between galleries and showrooms

Installation with lights at the Salone del Mobile in Milan

Your tour can only start from here where design and craftsmanship get married and the 5Vie Art + Design event comes to life between showrooms, art galleries and even churches that are usually closed. The idea here is that of collectivity and shared spaces between scenic installations, exhibitions and live performances.

You are in the oldest heart of Milan that dates back to Roman times and is still among the most lively areas. The roads that make up the so-called 5Vie – Via del Bollo, Via Santa Marta, Via Santa Maria Podone, Via Santa Maria Fulcorina and Via Bocchetto – are arranged in star shape. Discover them on foot. They are 500 meters from the Duomo, from which you can arrive in 5 minutes.

Brera Design District: finding the future in the streets of Brera

Narrow alley in Brera district in Milan

Still in the historic center is the time to move to Brera, the district that crosses the boundaries of the Duomo. There are about 200 events taking place in the Brera Design District, and you will find workshops in Ikebana, an urban oasis designed as a temporary office, historic buildings and unusual places, including a pizzeria and a carpentry shop, chosen as a pop-up showroom.

Do not forget to take a trip to the Pinacoteca di Brera to also visit the works of the past or the Civic Aquarium that for the occasion houses some interesting installations.
Among the galleries, museums, palaces and shops of Brera the future is on display and the future is now: it is better not to miss it! From the Duomo it is only a 15-minute walk, while from the Central Station it is a 15-minute metro ride.

Via Tortona, the heart of Milanese design

Naviglio Grande of Milan

Towards evening head towards Via Tortona. Even when there is no Fuorisalone is one of the most famous streets in Milan for design in one of the most beloved areas, the Navigli, 25 minutes walk from the Duomo or 20 minutes by metro from the Central Station.
Here the Fuorisalone becomes cooler between aperitifs, DJ sets, parties not to be missed and creative installations. Absolutely worth seeing is the BASIC We Will Design event, with emerging designers from all over the world and Stuperstudio's Superdesign Show, which plays with contaminations.
Then stop until after dinner to enjoy the atmosphere of the Navigli by night.

Day 2

Isola Design Festival, innovation and sustainability

Installation at the Salone del Mobile in Milan

At the foot of the Bosco Verticale, one of the city's most iconic residential complexes, the Isola district focuses entirely on innovation and sustainability. It also transcends the geographical boundaries of the neighborhood by bringing Isola Design Festival exhibitions around Milan.

Take a stroll among the murals abundant in this area as well. When it comes to art, in any form, there's never enough.

Porta Venezia Design District, the Other District

Corner of an old building in Milan

An absolute novelty for Fuorisalone: the Porta Venezia Design District was born, which proposes itself as the Other District because it wants to tell the story of diversity. Thisyear everything is focused on digital with artistic installations on the squares and corridors of the Raffles school that become an art gallery.
The headquarters is at the Meet Digital Culture Center. Between one event and another, relax in the greenery of the Indro Montanelli Gardens. For an art surplus, take a tour of the PAC, the contemporary art pavilion, right next to the gardens. You arrive in 20 minutes on foot from the Central Station, 10 minutes just by subway.

Suburban districts and must-see events

Installation at the Salone del Mobile in Milan

Indeed, while most events crowd within the confines of central Milan, the outskirts also boast a rich calendar of events outside the usual districts. Not to be missed are Alcova in Calvairate, a 20-minute metro ride from the Duomo; Tortona Rocks in Giambellino, also a 20-minute metro ride from the Navigli; and Labò by Design Blender and Alisée Matta in Barona, just 10 minutes away from the Navigli by metro.

During Design Week, museums, palaces, galleries, as well as shops and streets of Milan, transform into true scenic installations to admire, but also to reflect upon, before embarking on the quest for new stimuli and inspirations.

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