Milan has an ancient city centre with high and interesting buildings and palazzos and a population of 1.3 million people. From an European standpoint, the entire Milanese metropolitan area can be compared to London’s or Paris’. The so-called City-Region of Milan has in fact about 10 million inhabitants. Milan produces 10% of the domestic GDP, a level equal to Brussel’s or Madrid’s. It has a per-capita revenue that is almost twice the domestic one and an unemployment level as low as half of Italy’s as a whole. It registers 40% of the new innovation patents, equal to Boston’s annual production. It sells 10 million tickets yearly for art, music and cinema shows, based on the same population rate of Berlin, Amsterdam, Barcelona. Milan houses 650 fashion show-rooms, in competition with Paris and New York. Here, are based the Italian center for voluntary service and the tertiary industry. It is a magnetic point for designers, artists, photographers and models.
Milan is about to host the 2015 Universal Expo dedicated to the topic “Feeding the Planet, Energy for Life”. Milan is making itself available to promote the Country’s growth and be an Italian ambassador in the world discussing on sustainable development. Expo 2015 will be an extraordinary universal event displaying tradition, creativity and innovation in the business of food. It will bring together many themes that have already been handled by this event in the past, and set them out anew in light of new global possibilities whose common core is the idea that everyone on the planet should have access to food that is healthy, safe and sufficient.
Italy’s climate is predominantly Mediterranean: Alpine in the far north; hot and dry in the south. Winter in Milan is relatively mild but foggy, with temperatures ranging from zero to 8 degrees Celsius. Summer can be very humid with brief thunderstorms; temperatures range from 14 to 29 degrees. From March through April temperatures range from 6 to 18 degrees. From October through November they range from 6 to 17 degrees.
Milan’s origin goes back to 400 B.C., when Gauls settled and defeated the Etruscans. In 222 B.C. the city was conquered by Romans and was annexed to the Roman Empire. After 313 A.D., the year of the Edict of Tolerance towards Christianity, many churches were built and the first bishop was appointed: Ambrogio was such an influential person that the church became the Ambrosian Church (7 December is a holiday to honour Sant’Ambrogio). In 1300 the Visconti family which are noblemen from Bergamo, Cremona, Piacenza, Brescia and Parma ruled and brought a period of glory and wealth to the city. The Duomo was built in 1386 and became the symbol of Milan.
The Sforza family assumed the Castle and the power of the Visconti family and finally Milan got peace after many years of war against Venice and Florence. Under the Sforza duchy the city began the development of sciences, art and literature. Ludovico il Moro (Ludovico Sforza) called Leonardo da Vinci and “il Bramante” to his court to contribute to the technological, architectural and artistical life of the town.
Milan has been a rich and important city all the time, it always was a place for famous artists of the various eras and offered a particular assortment of churches, buildings and monuments. There has been a change of culture and art in the Renaissance with big a contribution in the period of the neoclassicism. Milan offers a big variety of buildings, monuments and museums. Most important church is the Cathedral which is the third largest church in the world.
It is overall made of marble, with immense statues, arches, pillars, pinnacles. From the roof you can get a beautiful overview of the city. Santa Maria delle Grazie was built between 1466 and 1490 and modified by Bramante. In the Refectory there is one of the most famous paintings of Leonardo da Vinci: the “Last Supper”. Milan has many historic palazzos like the Palazzo Reale (Royal Palace) which is situated in the south side of Piazza Duomo. The Sforza Castle is one of the symbols of Milan together with the Madonnina and the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II. All those sights together are just few reasons for a visit.
Milan is the centre of many financial businesses, and its so called hinterland is an avant-garde industrial area.
Fiera Milano, the city’s Exhibition Center and Trade Fair complex is one of the most important in the world. The new fairground, in the north-western suburb of Pero and Rho (opened in April 2005) is Europe’s largest open construction project and makes Fiera Milano the largest trade fair complex in the world.
It is the biggest industrial city of Italy with many different industrial sectors as manufacturing of textiles and garments, car manufactory, chemistry, mechanical tools and heavy machinery. Another important industry is tourism and of course fashion.
Festival of Sant’Ambrogio takes place once a year, on 7 December. Milan celebrates its saint who is Saint Ambrose (Sant’Ambrogio). This day, the day of Saint Ambrose, there is the fair called “O bei! O bei!” The festival overlaps the opening of the opera season at the Scala. The Carnival Ambrosiano is another event with a typical costume. There are also festivals like the Corteo dei Re Magi on 6 January, Tredesin de mars on 13 March or the Fair of Flowers. If you want to know more see: Milan tourism