Best hotels in Milan
This super-funky boutique hotel in one of Milan’s coolest areas—the Navigli canal district—has an eclectic style all its own. The 32 spacious rooms are organised by sports theme (boxing, tennis, rugby), but even non-sports fans will love the oversized beds, comfy couches and retro furniture. Many rooms even have large private terraces, a rarity in ultra-urban Milan. A complimentary breakfast basket—filled with bread, pastries, muesli, yogurt and fruit—is served in the hip lobby or out on the charming front patio.
If it’s total luxury you’re after, the Mandarin Oriental, Milan (housed in four 18th-century buildings in the Quadrilatero della Moda fashion area) may be the right place for you. Within the hotel, the sleek, contemporary décor has an Asian flair, and the 104 guest rooms are outfitted with custom-made Italian furnishings, desks and marble bathrooms. The truly amazing top-of-the-line suites, decked out with designer furniture, are larger than some apartments. To complete the pampering, don’t miss the lovely Spa at Mandarin Oriental; it includes an indoor pool and 24-hour gym, along with all manner of relaxing treatments.
Fresh, fun and design-minded, Room Mate Giulia is perfectly located just steps away from the Duomo. Retro interiors were created by Spanish/Italian designer-of-the-moment Patricia Urquiola, and each of the 85 industrial-chic rooms in greens, oranges, and blues features a flat-screen TV, desk and coffeemaker. The light and bright lobby, lined with original art and design books, invites lounging and socializing, and there’s a small gym and sauna in the basement if you feel the need to sweat it out.
Bustling Milan is often said to lack true Italian charm. Not so at Hotel Principe di Savoia, which dates from 1927 and exudes old-world glamor and sophistication. The 301 guest rooms are decorated in luxe Italian style, with neutral tones enlivened by jewel-toned pillows and bedspreads, lush patterned carpets and brocade drapes; modern conveniences include desks and mini-bars. Bathrooms, lined in marble and mosaics, feature elegant Acqua di Parma bath products. The penthouse Club 10 Fitness & Beauty Centre offers a pool, superlative spa treatments and a high-tech gym, all with amazing city views.
Originally opened in 1863, the Grand Hotel et de Milan has a rich musical history; Verdi lived off-and-on in the hotel for 20 years (and died there in 1901), and many musicians from the nearby La Scala opera have stayed and practiced at this hotel. The 95 understatedly elegant rooms feature antique furniture, parquet floors, richly patterned rugs and chandeliers, along with marble bathrooms stocked with luxe Etro toiletries. Even the fitness room is charming, with floor-to-ceiling windows through which gym-goers can glimpse lots of greenery. The lovely Don Carlos restaurant pays tribute to Verdi, and has walls lined with art from La Scala’s museum, along with well-prepared traditional Italian cuisine. Fabulous (if pricey) shopping on Via Montenapoleone is right outside the door.
With an excellent location near the Duomo and Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II (and just around the corner from La Scala), the Park Hyatt is known for its superlative customer service and spacious rooms. Many of the 106 guest rooms have large windows with prime Milan city views; all feature a king or queen bed, sofa and marble bathroom with soaking tub and rainfall shower. The top-end suites are amazing, with private terraces and whirlpool baths. All this elegance is matched by in-house Michelin-starred restaurant VUN Andrea Aprea, which showcases local ingredients in its delicious modern Italian dishes.
You’re probably not cool enough for the Armani Hotel—located, as expected, in Milan’s most exclusive shopping district, Quadrilatero della Moda—but it’s fun to pretend while people-watching the fashionistas and wannabes who congregate here. Each of the 95 guest rooms is decorated in minimalist beige-on-beige style and, of course, Armani furnishings. In another cool touch, in-room iPads control absolutely everything, from the TV to the lights to ordering room service. Items in the mini-bars are complimentary, though for libations of the alcoholic variety you’ll want to head up to the Armani/Bamboo Bar, with its stupendous city views.
If you’re in Milan to shop (window or otherwise), the Four Seasons is in arguably the most convenient location for wandering the city’s famous high-end fashion boutiques. Housed in a gorgeous building—a former 15th-century convent—the Four Seasons is a relaxing place to stay, with both a lovely lobby and an outdoor courtyard in which to enjoy an Aperol Spritz or cocktail. The 118 guest rooms are decorated in modern Italian style, with patterned fabrics (some suites even have original frescoes), and marble bathrooms have both soaking tubs and walk-in showers.
On a side street near the Duomo, the STRAF has a hip, minimalist vibe with dark, moody rooms, and attracts a youngish crowd. Italian designer Vincenzo De Cotiis incorporated non-standard and recycled materials into his hotel design; rough-edged guest rooms have been constructed of slate, brass, concrete and marble, all warmed up with bright art on the walls. Locals and in-the-know visitors congregate for aperitivi at STRAFbar, made of concrete and iron and filled with ‘70s furnishings and modern art, which often features live music and DJs. Unlike most Milan hotels, a full breakfast is included with every stay.
For a modern design city such as Milan, there are surprisingly few modern design hotels, which is why Magna Pars Suites is such a breath of fresh air—literally, as it’s also a perfume hotel, where fragrances are created on-site and used to freshen up the rooms. Located near the lively Navigli neighbourhood, the hotel’s glass, white and wood look is wonderfully chic, and the 28 large-sized guest rooms include living areas as well as bedrooms, all of which face the lovely inner courtyard. Fashion and music events are often held here, adding to the fun.
On a tight budget? Try something less expensive
Accommodations in Milan tend to be on the pricey side, and it can be a struggle to find a decent place to stay that won’t break the bank; all of these options offer good value along with other features that make them memorable, from comfortable rooms to a lovely included breakfast spread or modern-cool décor.