Milan isn't just famous for its fashion. The city has an international reputation for design of all kinds, and is known to champion Italian craftsmanship and draw in global audiences at its events. Expert designers and craftsmen from every medium come to the city to showcase their designs, and the annual Furniture Fair is no exception. The Salone Internazionale del Mobile is truly a design-lovers haven. Thinking about planning a visit to the fair in April? Read on to learn more…
History of the festival
This year marks the 58th edition of the Salone Internazionale del Mobile, with more than 2000 exhibitors from around the world. The annual event is the largest of its kind, showcasing the latest in urban furniture and design. First launched in 1961, each year the popular event has grown from strength to strength. What began as a small event for manufacturers focused on Italian furniture has expanded to a huge week-long festival that last year drew some 324,093 visitors from 165 different countries worldwide. The huge popularity of the festival also helped it expand beyond the realms of just furniture - unique and experimental home furnishings of all kinds, including lighting, and bathrooms, are also proudly displayed for buyers and manufacturers to discover.
What to expect this year
This year the event is set to open once again at the long-time venue Fiera Milano complex, this time taking place from 9-14 April 2019. Located in Milan's metropolitan area town of Rho and just 3km from the Radisson Blu Hotel, Milan you can see the best of Milan and immerse yourself in all the action at the trade show without hassle. In addition to the large exhibitions and commercial offerings of the Salone, there is also a diverse range of educational events that cover everything from modern design principles to the culture of Italian industrial and furniture design and its impact around the world.
This year the biennial events EuroCucina/FTK (Technology For the Kitchen) and the International Bathroom Exhibition return. Technology For the Kitchen will present new shapes, materials and technologies of built-in domestic appliances while International Bathroom Exhibition will encourage innovative designs and more sustainable options for higher efficiency.
The term 'fuorisalone' is used to define the events and exhibitions that animate the entire city of Milan during the week-long Salone del Mobile. Although the events are usually scattered throughout the city, the Fuorisalone recognises a series of main districts: Porta Venezia, San Babila, the ’5 Vie’, Sant’Ambrogio and San Gregorio, plus more dedicated projects where the majority of the happenings are concentrated. During the Fuorisalone, these districts take centre stage with an abundance of events including DJ sets, exhibitions and performances hosted at various locations across the city, comprising former industrial spaces, ateliers, artisinal workshops, ‘botteghe’ and the showrooms of big-name brands.
Exploring the best of Milan
Milan is one of Italy's most beautiful and interesting cities, so don't miss the opportunity to explore while you're visiting during the furniture fair. You can find an eclectic mix of art, architecture, and fashion in the city - fashionable works by modern masters like Gucci, Prada, Versace and Dolce & Gabbana stand alongside priceless pieces from da Vinci and Michelangelo.
Next, turn your attention to the city's stunning architecture - it's hard to miss - and visit the famous Castello Sforzesco along with the impressive Duomo and Basilica of Sant’Ambrogio. From there, all that's left to do is satisfy your tastebuds. Milan is as famous for its cuisine as it is its culture - try a fresh Italian coffee or savour a fresh plate of pasta made with local ingredients and local flavors. Whether you're visiting the furniture fair for a day or a week, don't miss out on a few of Milan's other marvels.