The Science and Tecnology...
The Science and Tecnology Musuem is a beautiful place set in an old monastry. They have sketches by Leonardo da Vinci and working mock ups of some of the things he devised. Geting away from the city into the countryside and seeing the old buildings and monastries.
English is hardly spoken in Milano. Oh dear, huh?. ;-) Nevertheless, don't let this deter you from visiting this great city.
You can pick up some Italian before your trip to Italy. Memorize common expressions and you should be fine:
Buon pomeriggio.....Good Afternoon
Come ti chiami?......What's your name?
Io mi chiamo XXXX.....My name is XXXX
Da dove vieni?.......Where are you from?
Io vengo da America, Australia, .Giappone, Olanda.....
I come from America, Australia, Japan, Holland...
Parlo Inglese?.......Do You Speak English?
Un po'.......A Little bit
Grazie mille.... Thank you very much.
Per favore... Please.
Quanto costa?.... How much does this cost?
Non mi toccare!.... Don't touch me! (my first Italian words learnt) :-D
Mi porta il conto per favore?.... Can you bring the bill please?
If you intend to stay in Milan for a little while longer, then you'll definitely need to learn more than just the above words. You can call up the following language schools and enroll for an Italian course at:
- Piazzale Cadorna 9 Tel 02 72011294
Il Centro Via Brera 11
Tel 8690554/ 8690754
These schools are amongst the best places for foreigners to learn Italian.
If your company is willing to foot the bill for your Italian classes, you may wish to get a private tutor instead. You'll learn the language faster... and be more confident to speak Italian boldly. Senza alcun dubbio!
My company is very generous in this aspect and is picking up the tab for my Italian language classes.
I have always associated Armani with clothes and perfumes, but a visit to Milan proved me wrong in that regard.
I read about the Emporio Armani store in the guide books and visited it really to have lunch in the restaurant there, which has quite a trendy reputation.
I sepnt hours browsing the four floors of this establishment and was absolutely astonished to discover that Armani is about a lot more than clothes!
Apart altogether from the cost of the designer labels, my figure isn't quite right for Armani sizes (as in, I'm not a size two!) so I was delighted to find that I could still shop till I was fit to drop and indulge in Armani foods (mostly jams and sweets), sunglasses, perfumes, bed linen, furniture and a host of other items.
If you really really want to pamper yourself (or get someone to do it for you) why not indulge in a bottle of the Armani Prive scent. Four scents in this collection were introduced shortly before Christmas 2005 and I was lucky enough to possess a bottle of the scent that comes in the dark brown bottle. It's the one that Giorgio himself wears - the scents are designed to suit either males or females.
Go on, spoil yourself:-) Anything and everything that you can afford - but they have provided something for every taste and pocket. You can leave Milan with a genuine Armani bag hosting a genuine Armani purvchase - even if it IS just sweets:-) As much or as little as you desire.
For foreign students...
... The "Old Fashion Cafe" is a great discotec. Every wednesday it's free entrance for foreign students (10 euro for italians), and they also have speciel evenings for different countries.
But go there during the period May-Septembre, since the garden then is open like a big dancefloor. During the cold winterevenings it's only dancing inside and the dancefloors are way too crowded.
Foreign girls should also be aware that there are a lot of guys there who only wants to find out if it's true that foreign girls are very easy to get in bed with... For guys, the guards change the dresscode depending on how many girls you bring with you... To have a better chance to get in, don't wear jeans.
For girls, come as you want!
After 11-11.30 pm you might have to wait a long long time to get inside.
Taxis in Milan
It is not easy to flag down a taxi in Milan, quite unlike London or many other large cities I have been to. Not quite sure why that is - probably because there are far fewer of them here and taxi drivers tend to wait at taxi ranks, is all I can come up with.
Right in the town centre, taxi ranks are located in front of the Duomo, in Piazza San Babila, in Piazza Cordusio and in Piazza Diaz, among others.
Often I just call for cabs. Some useful numbers as follows:
02 - 4040
02 - 4000
02 - 8585
Operators should speak English, although I've never tried asking for a taxi in English. Give them your location and they'll find you a cab and give you the number or name of the taxi - which is not the number/licence plate but usually something funky like Torino 37, etc. - and the estimated time of arrival (which is always, always an over-estimation - they tend to arrive earlier than expected).