Tips for a cultural break in Milan

Caffè Fernanda
Caffè Fernanda
Many cultural venues have eateries, bookstores, or both that can be accessed without a ticket.

The “Piccolo” Cafè & Restaurant – a great place to enjoy a cup of coffee, a light meal or an evening drink – is located in the 15th-century cloisters of Palazzo Carmagnola, seat of the Piccolo Teatro di Milano. Lovers of the genre, at Triennale Milano can find “Caffè Triennale” and “Terrazza Triennale”, two addresses that also include the Bookshop (designed by Patricia Urquiola) featuring a rich selection of books dedicated to architecture, design, modern and contemporary art.

Alternatively, the Mudec Museum in via Tortona offers an array of high-quality services. Highlights include a Bistrot, the starred restaurant Enrico Bartolini Mudec and a Design Store flanked by pop-up bookshops associated with the current exhibitions. In Gae Aulenti, Feltrinelli Red offers books and relax with a view over one of Milan’s newest and most beautiful squares, whereas a selection of ingenious, fun objects awaits you at the MUST – the Shop inside Leonardo da Vinci’s Museum of Science and Technology.

The city’s latest, go-to addresses are those linked to the Pinacoteca di Brera (the Brera art gallery), where the revolution undertaken by its director James Bradburne continues. At the “Bottega Brera” bookshop items on sale include postcards, guides and books, but also unique art pieces like the limited-edition dish designed specifically for the Pinacoteca by Fornasetti, a former student of the Brera Academy. Don’t miss the new Caffè Fernanda, a cafeteria named after the famous former Brera director Fernanda Wittgens, who in the post-war period brought the museum back to life.

These are our best picks if you want to relax and feel surrounded by culture!