A Stroll Down Milan’s Fashion Street – Via Monte Napoleone

One of the main attractions in Milan is its elegant fashion district,  more specifically the most famous street here,Via Monte Napoleone. Milan is Italy’s fashion capital and some say it is the fashion capital of the world.

DSCN4693The entire fashion district of Milan is known as the Quadrilatero della moda and is not far from Milan’s most famous landmark, the Duomo. Although Via Monte Naploeone is the most important and most well-known street in the fashion district here, Via della Spiga and Via Manzoni have their share of designer stores as well. One of the most recognized with a shop on Via della Spiga is Dolce&Gabbana,

Via Montenapoleone
is the street where fashion models and celebrities go shopping and price is never a concern. As the saying goes, “if you have to ask the price, you can’t afford it.”  For any first-time visitor to Milan, window shopping on this street is an entertainment in and of itself.

During my stroll on Via Monte Naploeone I did not see any famous people, but I was amazed by the prices in the windows of some of the designs that would become the year’s hot trends. Men’s shoes for 800 euros, a sweater for 500 euros and women’s pant suits for 3700 euros were just a few of the examples that caught my eye.

Via Monte Naploeone is packed full of designer shops one after the other, including clothing, shoes and jewelry shops. Clothing designers such as Versace, Ungaro, Mila Schon, Les Copains, Gucci and Basile are just a few who call Via Monte Naploeone home. Shoe designers Ferragamo, Bally, Fratelli Rossetti and Vierre are here and jewelers Cartier, Tiffany and Buccellati grace this street with their high end shops.

Milan’s Fashion Week takes place not once but four times a year with separate spring/summer men’s and women’s fashion weeks and also fall/winter men’s and women’s fashion weeks. The designer shops on Via Monte Napoleone gear up for these huge events which include catwalks, parties and other events. During each week there are as many as 70 runway shows and 50 showroom presentations for the buyers who come from all over the world.

Fashion weeks are huge revenue-producing events for Italy. The Italian brands hope  to produce as upwards of 100 billion dollars total revenue for the upcoming year.

Milan has a lot of clout when it comes to fashion weeks and models are eager to work for the Italian clothing designers, notably Versace, Dolce&Gabbana and Gucci. The shows draw celebrities as well.

Window shopping on Via Monte Napoleone is an activity anyone can afford and the experience is priceless.

Do you like to window shop? Have you been to Milan? I’d love to hear your feedback. Please leave a comment.

Grazie. Ciao

8 Responses

  1. nataliescarberry

    This summer we were in Milano for one day and that night, and our hotel was just a block down from the very street. We walked to the duomo that morning and when I started seeing all names, I just started chuckling. I’d never seen so many famous designer stores all in one place. Had no idea about it until then. Hugs, N 🙂 <3

  2. Jack Erickson

    I enjoyed your post and comments, Margie, visiting one of the most Milanese locations in a city with many attractions. I’ve walked down Via Montenapleone a couple times, amazed at the price and styles, but also by how few customers most stores had. I stopped in a couple mens’ stores and was almost mobbed by the alert staff eager to show their stylish clothes.

    My Milanese researcher is working with an event planning company for Fashion Week going on right now. I can’t wait to talk to her when it’s over to get the inside scoop on what it’s like behind the elaborate stages and runways. She’s hinting she has a great plot idea for my next Milano thriller. I’ve featured Stazione Centralie in “Thirteen Days in Milan,” La Scala in my soon-to-be-published “No One Sleeps” (“Nessun Dorma” in Italian”).

    Why not Fashion Week in the next plot?

  3. Greg Speck

    Saldi, saldi, saldi. It was in every window. Prices were much better than Portofino! The end of season sales merge into the constant sale.

  4. jennyandstephenmilan

    Having lived in Milan for two years I learned that via Della Spiga was always worth strolling along in the late afternoon, when the Milanese come out for their evening passeggiata. The windows of Dolce and Gabbana are always extraordinary. During fashion week there is usually one evening when many of the shops offer prosecco to welcome all customers into their stores, otherwise, for most of the year these stores are usually devoid of customers.

  5. imarancher

    There are places here and in Miami that stock only designer pieces. Most of us that can afford to travel can afford to buy a few of their items if we are careful about how many we purchase. I have a very well off g.f. who drags me off with her now and then. She always buys me a “treat” when we go and it is always something totally outrageous that I would never wear or carry as my other friends would have me committed! Still, they do have a bit of the exotic lore about them. A bit of mystique that can leave you dreaming about other lives that could have been.

  6. Ishita

    That’s horrendous pricing isn’t it, Margie! But I guess people willing to pay would eventually pay 😉 I haven’t been to Milan for more than a few hours. Maybe next time!

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