Useful info

Accommodation Philately
Airports Police
Art galleries Postage
August Public transport
Campsites Railways
Changing Money Safety and Segurity
Consulates Shopping
Cultural Institutes Street markets
Driving and car-parking Swimming pools
Emergencies Taxis
Ex-pat social events Telephones
Guided Tours Tickets and box offices
Home-hunting Tipping
Hotel info Tourist offices
Immigration Trade fairs
Left luggage Weather
Libraries Worship
Lost property Yellow
Medical services Youth hostel
Nightlife
Opera  

 Links :   http://mymilanitaly.blogspot.com

 

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Accommodation

Flats and apartments are in high demand. The easiest way to find a flat to rent or buy in Milan is to use the services of one of the real-estate agencies specialising in property for non-Italians. Agencies work either on a percentage basis – about 15% of the total rent charge once the contract has been finalised – or on a fixed-fee basis, in which you pay say Euro 150 and then get put into contact with the owners of property to rent. Most of the classified ads in free-ad publications such as Secondamano are of the second type, and you find yourself talking to a “Centro Servizi” which wants the money before going any further. Beware.

If you are looking for cheap accommodation, you can try the noticeboards at the various student institutions of the city, where you will often find people who want to share, or let a room. These institutions are:

  • Università Statale, Via Festa del Perdono 3

  • Università Cattolica, Largo Gemelli 1

  • Università Bocconi, Via Sarfatti 25

  • Politecnico, Piazza Leonardo da Vinci 32

  • IULM, Via Filippo da Liscate 3

  • Accademia di Belle Arti, Via Brera 28

  • Conservatorio, Via Conservatorio 22

Serviced apartments for short and medium term rentals:

www.rentxpress.com

Rentals and housing: http//:milan.craigslist.org/

See also the Classified ad section of this website.

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August

If you are planning a visit to Milan, remember to avoid August. For much of this month Milan – like many Italian cities – is like a ghost town. The population drops from 1,400,00 to about 300,000, the low point marked by 15th August or Ferragosto. Very many shops shut for the entire month. The Municipality of Milan publishes a booklet which is optimistically called “Milano Aperta Agosto”, listing the shops that remain open for at least part of the month, but it is only useful for residents who have to find a baker somewhere for their bread. Needless to say, in August there are no events of note.

This situation is traditional, and was originally caused by heavy industry (above all Fiat) closing for the month. Its suppliers followed suit and the effect rapidly spread to all spheres of business.

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Campsites

The “Campeggio Città di Milano” is in Via Airaghi 61 (MM1 De Angeli then bus 72), tel. 02.48.207.017. Tents, campers, caravans. It is next to a waterpark, and it offers various sports facilities. See www.campingmilano.it

 

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Changing money

Banks: open Mon-Fri, circa 8.30-13.30; 14.45-15.45. There are other money changing shops in Piazza Duomo, Piazza Scala, Via Orefici, Via Dante, the Central Station and the airports Money can also be changed at the central post office, Piazza Cordusio 1 (MM1 Cordusio, see under Postage), and a few other post offices: Via Spinola 10 (MM1 Amendola), Via Moscova 30 (MM2 Moscova), Central Station post office, and at Linate airport. Best rates are in the post offices, followed by banks.

 

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Driving and car-parking

Whenever you leave your car unattended, make sure that there are no bags, cameras, wallets etc. in sight inside.

To enter the city centre (the area within the so-called “Cerchia dei Bastioni”, a circular area which, to give you an idea, starts from Porta Venezia on one side, Piazza XXIV Maggio on the other), you have to pay a tariff in the Ecopass system, about €2 per day. The Ecopass system operates Mon-Fri, 7.30-19.30. Info tel. 02.02.02, or click on the Ecopass banner on website www.comune.milano.it.

Petrol stations in the city close for lunch, Saturday afternoons and Sunday. There are a few self-service pumps in the city. Motorway service stations are open 24 hrs a day.

To park in the streetside areas marked by blue lines, you need to buy a SostaMilano card, on sale at the “ATM Point” in the Duomo metro station (open Mon-Sat 7.45-20.15), and in Cadorna, Centrale F.S., Loreto and Romolo metro stations, as well as in many bars and tobacconists. The cards are also sold directly by the attendants near the parking areas (they have uniforms and ID cards). You mark the start of stay on the card by scratching the year, month, day, and time. Various privately-run carparks also exist (blue P sign). If you are driving into Milan, you can use the multistorey car parks at the Metro stations Cascina Gobba, Famagosta, Bisceglie, Molino Dorino and Lampugnano, open 6.00-01.00, the cheapest parking in the city. Don’t leave your car in areas marked by the tow-away symbol, or in areas marked by yellow lines (areas reserved for residents). If your car should be clamped or towed away, you will have to contact the Polizia Locale (traffic wardens), whose offices are in Piazza Beccaria 19 (MM1/3 Duomo), tel. 02.02.08.

Keep dipped headlights on during the daytime.

 

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Emergencies

Police: phone 113.

Carabinieri (another police force): phone 112.

Ambulance: phone 118.

Fire brigade: phone 115.

In case of stolen goods or documents, you will need to contact the police station, Questura, in Via Fatebenefratelli 11 (MM3 Turati), tel. 02.62.261. Consulates will advise on procedures.

 

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Guided tours

Personalized tours are offered by “A Friend in Milan” (see www.friendinmilan.co.uk or banner in home page).

Autostradale runs a three-hour coach tour runs every day except Mondays, starting at 9.30, near the taxi rank in Piazza Duomo (in front of the Cathedral). It includes a visit to the Last Supper, and visits to the most important monuments. Cost €55 per person. Info at www.autostradale.it , or from the tourist office in Piazza Duomo. Autostradale runs a trip to Como, every Saturday, 14.00-19.00, from 18 April to 25 July, and from 29 August to 24 October. Start from Piazza Duomo, Milan, €60, info as above.

Zani Viaggi runs a variety of coach tours, to Milan (sightseeing), Bergamo, Como, Venice, Cinque Terre, Verona, Gardaland amusement park. Info from their office in Foro Bonaparte 76, tel. 02.867.131, or from their website www.zaniviaggi.it.

The Centro Guide provides official guides for tours for up to 25 people, in various languages. Tel. 02.8645.0433, or www.centroguidemilano.net . The

Associazione Castelli & Ville runs excursions to castles and villas in Lombardy, with coach transport, lunch, and tour of the castle or villa (in Italian). Info tel. 02.6558.9231, 347.4830.009, info point Piazza Principessa Clotilde 12. www.castellieville.it

 

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Home-hunting

The easiest way to find a flat to rent or buy in Milan is to use the services of one of the real-estate agencies specialising in property for non-Italians. Agencies work either on a percentage basis – about 15% of the total rent charge once the contract has been finalised – or on a fixed-fee basis, in which you pay say Euro 150 and then get put into contact with the owners of property to rent. Most of the classified ads in free-ad publications such as Secondamano are of the second type, and you find yourself talking to a “Centro Servizi” which wants the money before going any further. Beware.

If you are looking for cheap accommodation, you can try the noticeboards at the various student institutions of the city, where you will often find people who want to share, or let a room. These institutions are:

  • Università Statale, Via Festa del Perdono 3

  • Università Cattolica, Largo Gemelli 1

  • Università Bocconi, Via Sarfatti 25

  • Politecnico, Piazza Leonardo da Vinci 32

  • IULM, Via Filippo da Liscate 3

  • Accademia di Belle Arti, Via Brera 28

  • Conservatorio, Via Conservatorio 22

Serviced apartments for short and medium term rentals:

www.rentxpress.com

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Immigration

EU citizens no longer have to have a Permit to Stay (permesso di soggiorno). To attain residence in Milan, phone call centre 020202, or go to www.comune.milano.it, then click on Servizi Online, Servizi anagrafici, Residenza stranieri. You have to fix an appointment at one of the immigration offices, in Via Boifava 17, Via Bovisasca 173, Via Paravia 26, Viale Ungheria 29, Via Quarenghi 21, Via Sansovino 9.

Other information resources on immigration include: Ministry of Internal Affairs, toll-free number 800.309.309, which provides general information on Permits to Stay (permesso di soggiorno) in English, French, Spanish and Arabic. The Immigration Office (Sportello Unico) at the Prefettura, provides information on immigration procedures, the Permit to Stay, family unification, and work permits. Corso Monforte 31, open Tues and Thurs only 9.00-12.00, tel. 02.7758.4343, Mon-Fri 9.00-12.00. The Immigration Office at Milan’s Questura is in Via Montebello 26. The new procedure for the issue of Permits to Stay is run by some Post Offices, which provide the respective kit free of charge, and accept the application form when this has been completed. Info on authorized post offices (which include the central post office in Via Cordusio 4) at toll-free number 803.160, or at www.poste.it. The Municipal Foreigners’ Office provides information on issues such as social services, legal aid, jobs and job training: Via Tarvisio 13, tel. 02.6739.1357, 02.6700.944. The Municipality runs other offices named “Milano Semplice”, providing info on services such as housing, permits to open new businesses etc: these offices are in Via Larga 12, Via Padova 118, Viale Ungheria 29, Via Tibaldi 41, Viale Legioni Romane 54, Via Quarenghi 21, Piazzale Stovani 3, Via Bovisasca 173.

 

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Left luggage

Central Station (piazza Duca d’Aosta), Deposito Bagagli in Galleria delle Partenze (up the stairs). Open every day, closed from 01.00 am to 06.00 am. You will be asked to present a valid ID to store and to pick up your luggage. There are also left luggage facilities at Malpensa and Orio al Serio airports. There are some rather impractical lockers, often out of order, at Cadorna railway station.

 

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Lost property

Milan City Council lost property office (ufficio Oggetti Rinvenuti): Via Friuli 30, Mon-Fri 8.30-16.00, tel. 02.8845.3900. This is where items lost on buses, trams and metro trains end up, and it is also the final destination for documents found in the street and put into post boxes. Only Italian is spoken at this office. Website www.comune.milano.it .

For property lost on trains, the relevant office (Oggetti Smarriti) is in the Central Station, within the Left Luggage office (Deposito Bagagli). Tel. 02.8845.3900.

If you leave something in a taxi, you may have a chance of getting it back if you have the receipt for the taxi ride (which has the taxi’s ID on it) and the phone number of the radio-paging service. So it’s a good idea to ask for a receipt whenever you use a taxi!

 

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Medical services

Ambulance: phone 118.

Italian Red Cross (ambulance): phone 02.3883.

Doctors (Italian) on call for problems that would normally be handled by the family doctor: available Mon-Fri, Sun 20.00-8.00, Sat 14.00-20.00, tel. 02.34.567. NB in case of emergencies, always use the 118 number.

Emergency departments at the following hospitals:

• Fatebenefratelli, Corso di Porta Nuova 23, tel. 02.63.631, 02.6363.2442.

• Ophthalmic emergency dept, Corso di Porta Nuova 23, tel. 02.6363.2239.

• Maggiore Policlinico, Via Francesco Sforza 28-35, tel. 02.55031, 02.5503.3209, 02.5503.3434.

• Niguarda Ca’ Granda, piazza Ospedale Maggiore 3, tel. 02.644.41.

• Obstetric/gynaecological emergency dept, Via Macedonio Melloni 52, tel. 02.6363.3220.

Pharmacies are a convenient place in which to find advice on minor complaints, as staff are medically trained. The Central Station pharmacy is open 24 hours a day, currently on the ground floor on the right-hand side of the station. For English-speaking medical, dental and psychology services, see the advertising spaces on this and other pages.

 

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Nightlife

Events & Nightlife, ELITE42 Milano Parties, www.elite42.com

Nightlife scene in areas such as Corso Como, the Navigli canal district, the Brera artists’ quarter, and Porta Romana, centred on the serene beauty of the Basilica of San Lorenzo with its row of Ancient Roman columns.

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Opera

Tickets for operas and concerts produced by Teatro alla Scala, Milan’s famous opera company, are sold in an office within Duomo Metro Station (follow signs to the “ATM Point“), open every day 12.00-18.00.Payment in Euro cash or by credit card.
For information on ticket availability, phone the Scala Infotel Service, tel. 02.72.00.37.44, from 9.00 to 18.00, every day of the week. To buy tickets by phone, tel. 02.860.775. This is a computerized system operating at all times, in English, Italian, German and French. Credit card number and tone-type telephone essential. Tickets can also be purchased via Internet sitewww.teatroallascala.org. Credit card only, 20% surcharge. On the same day as a performance, any tickets not yet purchased are put on sale at the Arcimboldi theatre ticket office at half price, from two hours before the performance. There are no standing places. Dress code: dark suit and tie for first nights, slightly more relaxed for other performances. No children under 6, no photography, video, cellphones, tape recorders etc.

More info on Teatro alla Scala here.

La Scala Theatre Museum

Location of La Scala performances

Performances are held at Teatro alla Scala in Piazza Scala (MM1/3).

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Philately

Italian first day covers and other philatelic products are sold at the Central Philately Office, Via Cordusio 4

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Police

Police: phone 113.
Carabinieri: phone 112.
Ambulance: phone 118.
Fire brigade: phone 115.

In case of stolen goods or documents, you will need to contact the police station, “Questura”, in Via Fatebenefratelli 11 (MM3 Turati), tel. 02.62.261. Consulates will advise on procedures.

Website: http://questure.poliziadistato.it/Milano.nsf

All people from abroad who intend to stay in Italy for a protracted period need to have a Permesso di Soggiorno issued by the Questura. The relevant office is in Via Montebello 28 (MM3 Turati), tel. 02.6226.102, 02.6226.5777, open Mon-Fri 8.30-12.30, Sat 9.00-12.00. The Municipality of Milan provides immigration information at the Ufficio Stranieri, Via Tadino 12, tel. 02.2940.3274. Open Mon-Thurs 9.30-11.30.

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Postage

Post offices are marked with a yellow “PT” sign.

The central post office for letters, parcels etc. is in Via Cordusio 4, open Mon-Fri 8.00-19.00; Sat 8.30-12.00, Sun closed.

The post office in Piazza Cordusio is for postal account payments, money changing etc., same times.

Most other post offices are open in the morning only, Mon-Fri 8.00-14.00, Sat 9.30-13.00. Stamps are also available at tobacconists (T sign).

Red post boxes are located outside post offices and tobacconists. Italian first day covers and other philatelic products are sold at Via Cordusio 4.

Post information, tel. 803160, Mon-Sat, 8.00-20.00, www.poste.it

 

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Public transport

In Milan, buses, trams and metro (underground) trains are run by a company named ATM. Ordinary tickets cost €1 and can be obtained in Metro stations (newsagents, automatic machines, ticket offices in some stations), and from bars displaying the green and orange ATM sticker on the window. Weekly, monthly or yearly season tickets are available. The largest ATM ticket sales and info offices are the ATM Point information offices in Duomo, Cadorna, Centrale, Loreto and  Romolo Metro stations, open Mon-Sat 7.45-19.00. The ordinary ticket should be franked using the machine as soon as you get on a bus or tram, or go through the Metro turnstiles, or before getting on an FNM train. The same ticket can be used for 75 minutes from the time franked on the ticket, with any combination of buses and trams (the magnetic ticket should be franked on every journey), but with just the one Metro journey, or one journey on a Passante Ferroviario train, or on a FNM train (within city limits). The one-day ticket (abbonamento giornaliero, €3) and the two-day ticket (abbonamento bigiornaliero, €5.50) last 24/48 hours respectively from the first franking: frank the magnetic ticket on every journey. The Metro system consists of 4 lines, number 1 (red), 2 (green), 3 (yellow), and the “Passante Ferroviario” (S trains).

The FNM is the privately-run train service running from Stazione Nord in Piazza Cadorna. For info on FNM trains, there is an info office in the Cadorna station, open 7.00 to 20.00 every day. www.lenord.it  Metro trains run from around 6.15 until 00.30, except on Saturday nights when trains run till about 02.00. During the night there is a replacement bus service for parts of lines 1 and 3. There are large interchange car parks at the stations Lampugnano, Bisceglie (MM1), Cascina Gobba, Famagosta (MM2), open 7.00-01.00 (overnight parking possible). Line 1 (red line) trains now run to Rho Fiera, reaching the new trade fair area.

To get to Rho Fiera you have to buy a 1 + 1/2 zone ticket, €1.55. The one or two-day ticket is not valid for getting to Rho Fiera. For public transport info, toll-free info at 800.808181 (7.30-19.30), www.atm-mi.it  (not at all a practical website).

The “Radiobus” service, operating from 20.00 to 02.00, is like a collective taxi service. A very comfortable air-conditioned minicoach picks you up and takes you where you want to go. You have to book by phone at  2.4803.4803, preferably well in advance – say a few hours – or even just before your trip, but in this case you run the risk of not getting a place as well as spending ages listening to a recorded message. Cost €3 if you pay on the bus, less if you buy the ticket (ordinary ATM ticket + Radiobus ticket, total €2.50) in advance. This service may seem complicated, but it is so convenient and comfortable that it’s well worth the effort.

 

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Railways

Most trains leave from the Stazione Centrale.

Train information can be obtained from the information office at the station, or by phone, 892021, or best of all by Internet www.trenitalia.com. Remember that any train ticket should be franked using the yellow machines situated at the near end of the platforms, just before boarding the train. A return ticket should be franked again before the return journey. If you forget, you will be fined! If you do forget, find the conductor on the train as soon as possible, and the fine will be reduced. For many trains, seat booking is obligatory. In any case it is a good idea to buy your ticket early (at least the day before) and book your seat (small extra charge). Saves frustration queuing while your train is about to depart. Be sure to claim your booked seat within ten minutes after departure. Apart from the main ticket office in Stazione Centrale, there is also a small ticket office just around the right-hand corner of the station (in Piazza Luigi di Savoia) called Doria, where queues are much shorter. Prices are the same. Beware of the automatic ticket machines, which may give you a money token instead of cash for change. For the differently abled and people with sight problems, there is a phone number for the whole of Italy: 199.30.30.60, operating every day, 7.00-21.00.

Ferrovie Nord trains leave from Cadorna and run to various locations north of Milan, including the lakes and Malpensa airport. See www.lenord.it

 

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Safety and security

In Milan, like most large cities, there is a problem of small time theft. Take care of personal possessions at all times! Don’t leave your bags unattended even for a moment, particularly in crowded locations like Piazza Duomo and Galleria Vittorio Emanuele. Also take care in and around the Central Station, and when on trams and metro during the rush hour. If, at the station or airport, someone approaches you and offers you a taxi, this is not the normal taxi and it will cost much more. This is happening particularly at Linate airport, the taxi turns out to be a chauffeur-driven car with a bill to match. Beware of buying fake merchandise on the street, it will be low quality and it’s also against the law. People selling roses in restaurants have nothing to do with the restaurant, just say no (unless you want one, of course!). If you give money to the many beggars in the city and on the Metro trains you are financing the organized crime.

 

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Swimming pools

Here are the addresses of some of Milan’s pools.

Infostrada Sportvillage (Lido), Piazzale Lotto 15. MM1 Lotto. Tel. 02.3272.683.
Open Tues-Sun 10.00-19.00. €5, €6 on Sunday. This sports centre dates to the 1920s: a large pool, two waterslides, beach volley, water polo, sunbathing area. Run by the Municipality of Milan.

Romano, Via Ampère 20, MM2 Piola. 02.7060.0224.
Open every day, 10.00-19.00. €3.60, €4.10 on Sunday. Another 1920s pool, 100 m long. Just the large pool and a sunbathing area, popular with Milan families. Run by the Municipality of Milan.

Harbour Club, Via Cascina Bellaria 19. Bus 64, 72, 80. Info 02.452861.
Open 9-20 every day. This private, well-equipped sports centre is ideal for people living in Milan: membership is on a yearly basis, but it is possible to enrol for just the month of August. Two pools, but also golf, football, squash, gymnastics and many other activities.

Aquatica, Via Gaetano Airaghi 61 (in the western suburbs of the city, near the Tangenziale Ovest ring road), MM1 De Angeli then bus 72. Tel. 02.4820.0134.
Open every day 10.00-19.00, with an evening session 22.30-03.00. €13, €15 on Sat and Sun. This is a water park, with many pools, water slides, river swimming (with artificial current) and much more. Campsite, restaurant, and discoteque for the evening session.

Idroscalo/IdroParkFila
The Idroscalo is an artificial lake, once used as a flying boat airport, near Linate. Today it is used for watersports and recreation above all in summer. Info: 02 7020.0902, 02.7020.8388 (9.00 – 21.00, Sat 14.00 – 21.00). To reach the lake, take bus ID from MM1 San Babila (Corso Europa). The facilities include:

• Running circuit, 6 km around the lake, and cross country circuit.

• Mountain bike circuit; fitness circuit in the woodlands.

• Rollerblade and rollerskating; free-climbing wall.

• Sailing, canoeing, rowing, swimming; children’s play area.

For more information on swimming pools: www.turismo.comune.milano.it

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Taxis

It is almost impossible to stop a taxi on the street in Milan: you have to locate one of the taxi-ranks (see map pages), or call one of the radio taxi firms 

02.4040
02.8585
02.4000
02.6969

A few taxis accept credit cards. If in doubt about price, ask the driver for an estimate before setting off. On-line estimates at www.milanotaxi.it

 

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Telephones

Bars, post offices and automatic vending machines sell phone cards that can be used in most public phone booths.

The 02 dialling code for Milan is incorporated into phone numbers. If you are calling Italy from abroad, you have to include the “0” of this prefix, ie +39.02.(number). Numbers starting 339, 347, 348 etc. are for mobile phones, these calls cost more. Numbers starting with 0 are for  fixed phones, 1 for public utilities (police etc.), 3 for mobiles, 8 for toll-free numbers.

 

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Tickets and box offices

Ticket info: Teatro alla Scala
The ticket office is in Duomo metro station (opposite the “ATM Point” public transport office). It is open every day 12.00-18.00 (closed public holidays and August). Payment in Euro cash or by credit card. For information on ticket availability, phone the Scala Infotel Service, tel. 02.7200.3744, from 9.00 to 18.00, every day of the week. To buy tickets by phone – up to two weeks before the performance – tel. 02.860.775. This is a computerized system operating at all times, in English, Italian, German and French. Credit card number and tone-type telephone essential. Tickets can also be purchased on line: www.teatroallascala.org. Credit card only, 20% surcharge. Dress: jacket and tie for men, dark suit on first nights. No children under 6, no photography, video, cellphones, recording equipment etc.

Light, pop and classical music concert tickets
Tickets can be purchased at the following stores:

• Ricordi (basement floor), Galleria Vittorio Emanuele (MM 1/3 Duomo). Tel. 02.86.90.683.

• Box Ticket, Messaggerie Musicali, Galleria del Corso 2 (MM1 S. Babila), tel. 02.760.551.

• Fnac, Via Torino on corner with Via Palla (MM1/3 Duomo), tel. 02.869.541.

• TicketOne, Spazio Oberdan, Viale Vittorio Veneto 2 (MM1 Porta Venezia). Open Tues-Sun 10.00-21.00, open until 22.00 Tues and Thurs, closed Mon.

• Box Ticket Free Shop, Central Station, tel. 02.66.96.757.

• Teatro dal Verme, Via San Giovanni sul Muro 2 (MM1 Cairoli), tel. 02.8790.5201.

 Mondadori Multicenter, Via Marghera 28 (MM1 Wagner), tel. 02.852.676.
• Feltrinelli, Piazza Piemonte 2 (MM1 Wagner).

• Punto Touring, Corso Italia 19 (MM3 Missori), tel. 02.6592.526.

• Il Sipario Musicale, Via Molino delle Armi 11 (MM3 Missori), tel. 02.5834.941.

• Box Ticket, Cadorna Station, Piazza Cadorna, tel. 02.02.7209.3971.

 Box Ticket, in Largo Cairoli, sells tickets for Italian-language musicals only. Tel. 02.8051.197

There may be a booking charge of about 10%.

On-line ticket sales:

www.ticketweb.it 
www.ticketone.it
www.vivaticket.it
www.ticketitalia.it

Tickets for the Orchestra Sinfonica di Milano Giuseppe Verdi (concerts at the Auditorium di Milano) can be purchased, as well as at the theatre box office detailed in What’s On, at the APT tourist office, Via Marconi 1 (Mon-Sat 10.00-18.30, Sun 10.00-13.00), and at the Banca Cesare Ponti, Piazza Duomo on corner with Via Mengoni, open Mon-Fri 9.30-13.30, 14.45-16.15.

Football tickets and transport
Tickets for A.C. Milan’s matches can be purchased at:
• Branches of Banca Intesa. Open Mon-Fri 8.45-13.45.
• Milan Point shop, 
Piazza San Fedele (entrance in Via Marino/Via Ragazzi del ’99).

On-line info and sales at www.acmilan.com

Tickets for Inter’s matches can be purchased at:

• Branches Banca Popolare di Milano. Open Mon-Fri 8.45-13.45, 14.45 –15.45.

Prices start at €15 and reach €115. On-line info and sales at www.inter.it

Admission is free for the disabled: gates 50-51 (officially you have to have a certificate showing your “100% disability”).

You may be asked for your personal ID when buying tickets and when at the match.

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Transport
To get to the stadium before the match, MM1 Lotto then free shuttle bus, or tram 16 from MM1 De Angeli. Seats are numbered, and so in theory you can get there any time: however it’s best to get to the stadium a bit early just to savour the pre-match entertainment. After the game, there are no shuttle buses, and so you can either walk to MM1 Lotto (15-20 minutes) or to Piazzale Axum to take tram 16 back to MM1 De Angeli or into the centre (MM1 Duomo).

San Siro Museum, tour of the stadium

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Tipping

In restaurants, a tip of 5-10% is customary (unless “servizio” has been specified on the bill), though many Italians just leave a few euros on the table without worrying about calculating the percentage. All service personnel, such as hotel staff, taxi drivers and garage mechanics (car repairs), will appreciate a tip.

 

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Tourist offices  

• IAT, Piazza Castello 1 (M1 Caroli). Tel. 02.77.40.43.43. Open Mon-Fri 9.00-18.00; Sat 9.00-13.30  14.00-18.00; Sun 9.00-13.30  14.00-17.00. This office provides free information on what to see and do in the city, with leaflets, maps etc.  See also www.appuntamentimetropolitani.milano.it

• APT Central Station (M2/3 Centrale F.S.). Tel. 02.77.40.43.18. Open Mon-Fri 9.00-18.00; Sat 9.00-13.30  14.00-18.00; Sun 9.00-13.30  14.00-17.00.  Located on the first floor “departures gallery”. Information, leaflets, maps, and also hotel availability.

• Milan Urban Center (Galleria Vittorio Emanuele 11/12, adjacent to Piazza Scala, MM1/3 Duomo). Open Mon-Fri 9.00-17.00, Sat and Sun closed. Information on events organized by the Municipality of Milan. Phone 02.8845.6370, 02.8845.6554/5.

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Weather

The weather in Milan, brought to you by ‘EuroMeteo’

Lombardy weather forecasts: www.arpalombardia.it/meteo

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Worship

Click here for a list of catholic church services in various languages

Roman Catholic Parish of San Carlo  (in English): S. Maria del Carmine, Piazza del Carmine 2 (MM2 Lanza). Tel. 02.86.63.49. Worship on Sundays: 10.45 (English); 17.45 (Eng. & Tagalog/Philippine).

Anglican/Episcopal Church in Milano (in English): All Saint’s Church, Via Solferino 17 (MM2 Moscova). Tel. 02.655.22.58. Holy Eucharist every Sun at 10.30.

Congregation Beth Shalom of Milan:  Our Congregation in Milan is an open, friendly, international Congregation practicing Reform Judaism. All services in English and Italian. Info bethshalom@libero.it or tel. 02.4819.6675. Next Shabbat services Mar 11, April 13 (Passover). Children’s education program.

Ecumenical Protestant Worship  (in English), at the Methodist Church in Milan: every Sunday at 11.45. Via Porro Lambertenghi 28 (near Piazza Lagosta, MM3 Zara, trams 4, 11). Tel./fax 02.607.2631.www.methodistchurchofmilan.com

International Church of Milan  (in English):  meeting at the Milano Tre Centro Religioso, Via Manzoni 1 (Milano Tre, Basiglio), Sundays at 17.30. For information, call 349.766.9678.

Islamic Centre  : Centro Islamico di Milano e Lombardia, Via Cassanese 3, Milano 2, Segrate. Info, call 02.21.37.080, 02.21.37.270.

Synagogue Lev Chadash  , First Reform synagogue in Italy.  Shabbat and holiday services, Bar/Bat Mizvah preparation. All are welcome to visit our temple at Piazza Napoli 35. Info www.levchadash.info or contact us via email levchadash@levchadash.info

Milan Bible Church :  now meeting at Via Isimbardi, 4 (25 meters south of Viale Cermenate on the #95 bus route).  Worship in English every Sunday at 17.20; Philippino Fellowship (in English and Tagalog) every Thursday at 19.30.  Info:  02.51.12.31.

Quakers’ Meeting  in Milan every month. Call 348.706.991

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Yellow

Yellow. If Milan has its own colour, it has to be yellow. That lovely, golden ochre yellow of the buildings, so perfect yet so hard to imitate. The bright golden yellow of the “Madonnina”, perched on top of the Cathedral, a symbol of the city that is celebrated in a song in Milanese dialect, that, if you’ve been here long enough to learn it all the way through with a reasonable pronunciation, proves that you’re as Milanese as most of the rest of the population. The crusty yellow of the michetta, the little bread roll typical of the city, with a star-shape on the top and a hollow inside.

But above all, the yellow of saffron rice, risotto alla milanese. This is the local dish par excellence: while in central and southern Italy, pasta became the mainstay of the diet, in Milan, it was rice, grown in the fields to the south and west of the city that are flooded at this time of year for sowing. The natural selection of culinary habits has favoured pasta, which now dominates the homes and recipe books all over Italy, and Risotto alla Milanese is an endangered species, served in only a few restaurants. Perhaps because it has to be made at the moment, which takes about 20 minutes. And it requires constant and vigilant attention. Here, anyway, is an approximate description of the process.

Chop an onion finely. Fry it in ample butter until golden yellow (again!) Add the rice (80-100 gr. per person) and fry for a minute, stirring continuously. Then pour in some red wine (some say white), stirring, and enjoy the fantastic smell that wafts forth from the saucepan: something absolutely indescribable. Then add a little saffron, either in pistil form or as that deep orange powder that bears a resemblance to gold dust. It should do: weight for weight, it costs more! And then stock, kept simmering: ideally the water in which mixed joints have been boiled, including the marrowbone that is another traditional Milanese dish. Keep stirring, gradually adding stock as it is absorbed. When the rice is cooked but still has a slight “bite” to it, remove from the heat: the risotto should still be fairly liquid at this stage. Add more butter, a generous amount of grana padano (the Lombard version of Parmesan cheese), stir, cover, and leave for five minutes. During this period, what happens inside the saucepan is mystically referred to as “mantecatura” that indicates the formation of a very tasty sauce that coats the individual grains of rice. Serve and enjoy.

The many variants include the cheap version, using turmeric powder instead of saffron, stock cubes instead of real stock. Some people prefer to add cream instead of butter at the end, or begin the risotto with olive oil instead of butter. But the real thing is something else.

And, if you visit the cathedral, take a look at the enormous stained glass windows in the apse, supposedly the largest in Europe, with a vast amount of yellow glass. Apparently saffron was one of the products used to colour the glass, and the risotto was born as an offshoot of this activity, some say because some saffron accidentally fell into the craftsman’s pot of rice, while others tell of a dish served up as a practical joke to a master craftsman who had the habit of adding saffron to just about every colour of glass that he made. And, if when you emerge from the Cathedral, it’s late evening and the white marble of the building is tinted ellow by the rays of the setting sun, you’ll witness one explanation for the predominantly yellow colour of so many buildings here. Stone is rare in Milan, and so most buildings were made in brick and then plastered and painted to simulate stone. The yellowcolour is supposedly the colour of marble at sunset.

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Youth hostel

Ostello per la Gioventù “Piero Rotta”, Via Martino Bassi, 2 – MM1 QT8. (Entrance Viale Angelo Salmoiraghi, 1.) Tel. 0239267095, www.ostellionline.orgostellomilano@aiglombardia.it. Open 24 hours a day.Euro 19/night including breakfast. Family rooms (hostel is open to families if they are accompanying minors) cost Euro 22.- p/p/p/n. Membership card needed, available in hostel for Euro 18.-. Max 14 nights stay (3 nights when full).

Hostel Links:    

www.hostelitaly.net.
www.hostelworld.com