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My Milan: Ilaria Sesso


Ilaria Sesso is the creative director of womenswear at Mauro Grifoni. The company, which was set up in 1992, produces handmade shirts that combine traditional craftsmanship with contemporary styling. The success of this line led to the launch of a womenswear collection in 1997, and today the brand is sold across the world. Here Ilaria shares her intimate insider knowledge of Milan

Hannah Lewis / © Katie Wilson-Ells
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Hannah Lewis,

‘In Milan my favourite place to shop is Excelsior. This is a department store where you can find some of the most current fashion brands. The design and interior of the building is also amazing, it’s beautiful – it’s also great for a drink! 

‘The Mauro Grifoni shop is at Via Santo Spirito 17.  I love to visit as this is the best way to understand what people really want.

Tokyo and London are also great cities to shop in; they offer such a vast array of brands. In Italy, Milan is my favourite city to shop in.

‘My favourite walk is around Brera, in the heart of Milan. It’s a nice zone and an artistic place where you can find some old shops.

Paper Moon near San Babila is a really special place for me; whenever we finish any event we always have dinner there. It’s a great place, with good people and amazing food.

‘There are so many really nice old cafés in Milan. Whenever I have time to walk around the city centre I always discover new little secret places, but for me the best is still Cova, in Via Montenapoleone. This place is special to me and is so elegant.

‘Milan’s best local secret is the restaurant Al Vecchio Porco on Via Messina. There’s also Ceresio 7 which has a pool on the rooftop and serves amazing food.

‘Milan is beautiful, but sometimes for a special occasion I prefer to drive a little bit further out. If friends are visiting I sometimes drive them to Verona, just one hour from Milan. The hills around the city are amazing and the walks are beautiful. The city centre is really good for shopping and great for dinner too; some of the most famous wines come from here.

‘One local person I really admire is Renzo Rosso, who co-founded Diesel. He's not only a business man but a person who loves what he does.’

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