When she’s not perched atop a director’s chair, Milan-born Maria Host-Ivessich is hunting out gems in her hometown. From sex shops to sorceress beauticians, she spilled on some of her all-time favorite places.
I know it’s an anti-Milanese thing to say but I love a French breakfast. The place for it in Milan is Dedans! They have everything: from pain au raisin to pain au chocolat to, of course, perfect butter croissants with lots of jams to choose from (from pear and cinnamon to figs to raspberry…), plus they have a lovely veranda.
Dedans Bar: Piazza Riccardo Wagner, 3, 20145 Milan – dedansbar.com
One of my favorite “combos” for a nice lunch, introduced to me by a dear friend. My favorite thing in the world is Zibo’s pastrami sandwich. For dessert, literally in front of the door you can hear the intercom from Caminadella. Walk through the gate and you are in a lovely little courtyard, at the end there is the atelier with crazy bread and chocolate cakes.
Zibo Cuochi Itineranti: Via Caminadella, 21, 20123 Milan – zibocuochiitineranti.it
Caminadella Dolci: Via Caminadella, 23, 20123 Milan – caminadelladolci.it
Another combo from the heart. I practically grew up on Calabiana, and now the foundation is practically attached: perfect! We almost always end up there after an exhibition or event. Porri and Gorgonzola pizza is one of my favorites in the world.
Fondazione Prada: Largo Isarco, 2, 20139 Milan – fondazioneprada.org
Taverna Calabiana: Via Arcivescovo Calabiana, 3 – tavernacalabiana.it
Casa Ramen is my favorite restaurant at the moment. Being disorganized, I show up without a reservation every time and it’s always full – so now the technique is to have an aperitif with focaccia from Fiordiponti and sneak into the restaurant at the last sitting! It’s perfect, just don’t overdo it with the focaccia… haha!
Fiordiponti Bakery & Cafe: Via Antonio Pollaiuolo, 9, 20159 Milan – fiordipontimilano.it
Casa Ramen Super: Via Ugo Bassi, 26, 20159 Milan – casaramensuper.com
A classic of old Milan – perfect for a drink without frills (and by no frills I do not mean “shabby chic”) and a wonderful selection of wines. A real “emporium” of beautiful things.
La Coloniale: Corso Genova, 19, 20123 Milan – lacoloniale.com
The Via Casati neighborhood is one of my favorites in Milan because I find all the things I love: A vegan restaurant (Mantra Raw Vegan) for when I need to detox, a comic shop (I’m a bit of a nerd for art books) and Sex Sade – a really tasteful sex shop with everything from independent lingerie to latex to games, where shop assistants are a dream, and the atmosphere is of a store like any other (as it should always be!).
Sex Sade: Via Felice Casati, 8, 20124 Milan – sex-sade.it
Mantra Raw Vegan: Via Panfilo Castaldi, 21, 20124 Milan – mantrarawvegan.com
Speaking of sex shops, another one of my favorites can be found in my own neighborhood, Tortona. Whereas Sex Sade leans more retro and decadent, WOVO is bold, modern and specializes in toys and latex – the latter being used by Kim Kardashian and in fashion shows!
WOVO: Via Savona, 45, 20144 Milan – wovostore.com
Via Unione is another street with three beautiful places, one after the other. The first is a very old-school vegetarian restaurant (again!), the second is a library where you can browse and get lost at the same time (you can find everything from tarot to psychology, to meditation). The final one is one of the few remaining places where you can find any movie you want on DVD, with sections divided by directors and actors. I can stay in there for hours.
La Vecchia Latteria: Via dell’Unione, 6, 20122 Milan – facebook.com/la.vecchia.latteria
Libreria Dell’Anima: Galleria Unione, 1, 20122 Milan – libreriagruppoanima.it
Il Tempio del Video: Via dell’Unione, 14, 20122 Milan – tempiodelvideo.com
For the magic pieces that make you feel precious, Delphine is a pearl. I met her at the Vintage Fair of Belgioioso, where I go every year (I love it). We met again at the Current Affair of NYC (another fair), but it was only recently that I went to visit her in her shop in Isola. It is a cave of desires!
Delphine Vintage: Via Guglielmo Pepe, 16, 20159 Milan – facebook.com/Delphine-Vintage-51114608560263
In addition to the “classic” perfume route of Milan in Brera, my favorite places are these two. They are two different worlds, the first modern and organized, with a website and a consulting corner: a total marvel. The second is more of an old-school emporium. The atmosphere is incredible and the selection is small, but focused. Usually, before going to a perfumery, I order a few samples on a site called Aus Liebe zum Duft, but the shop is also very generous with the samples!
Pérfume By Calé: Via Santa Maria Podone, 5, 20123 Milan – cale.it
Scarazzini di Bagarotti: Corso Genova, 28, 20123 Milan
Best supplements in Milan! Their hyaluronic acid tablets have changed my skin, and with their zinc I don’t get sick anymore. They know more than the devil.
Farmacia Boccaccio: Via Giovanni Boccaccio, 26, 20123 Milan – farmaciaboccaccio.it
Antonella is a sorceress. Sometimes I ask her for a treatment and she gives me different one – I trust her and she’s always right! She “understands” the skin. And if I know that I want to be at the top of my game, the solution is an oxygen treatment!
Antonella Beauty Center: Corso Italia, 22, 20122 Milan – antonellabeautycenter.it
My hair is my sore spot, it’s very fine and always a bit worn due to the randomly used hair dryer and flat iron. Stefano’s treatments are all done in such a way as to safeguard, first of foremost, the health of the hair. I am now convinced that if I didn’t go to him I’d be bald.
Parrucchiere Centro Estetico Sinergie: Via Broletto, 39, 20121 Milan – facebook.com/pages/Sinergie/343409869147913