Travel & Hotspots
May-britt’s Milan Diary
Also known as the circus called Milan Fashion Week. When you step out of a cab and the chauffeur wishes you a ‘buona sfilata’. As in: have a great show. That only happens here. In Paris they’re far too prude to say that they’re interested in fashion. New York is far too big to find a cab driver who actually even knows it’s fashion week and London, I might as well admit to it: I’ve never actually been there during fashion week so I have absolutely no idea what it’s like.
But in this city, in this city they know that Fay has a show a couple blocks away from the Gucci show, that Alessandro Michele changed the location from Viale Piave to Via Valtellina and when you say ‘just drop me off anywhere, it really doesn’t matter where’, they’ll drop you off right in from of Corso Como 10.
Milan. The city where everything is possible and everything is accepted. Whether it’s in the name of love or in the name of fashion. So evidently it was absolutely no problem to take a detour to pick up someone’s invite to the Gucci show as an extreme measure to experience the best of the best fashion up close and personal. And out of respect for fashion, I didn’t go inside. Everything was being live streamed outside and I was able to be useful and hold up a cab for a fashion friend of mine for after the show (she did make it in) and we could race on through to Linate.
I might not have been inside the venue, but that doesn’t mean I didn’t get a good taste of it all from the outside. And hey, I had interviewed Patrizia Pepe in the morning and after the Gucci show (there’s a new period BG, before Gucci and AG, after Gucci) I was going to head to a different hotel. One I randomly booked on Booking.com, but zero complaints. Hallway, shower, bedroom and living room right in the dead center of the city. And proper wifi. A+ for this place. I don’t have to continuously sign in unlike the rest of internet connections in Italy that keep asking me for log-in codes.
Anyways. I left my apartment in the dead center of the city because I would be fired from my role as a mother if I didn’t return home without something from the Disney Store for my girls. And so I headed to Disney and that’s when I saw complete chaos in the streets. Right in front of the Max Mara store. I can hardly believe I had almost forgotten about it. The Max Mara event. With Gigi Hadid as the guest of honor.
I maneuvered through the crowd of hysterical teen girls, kept yelling that I was ‘on the list’ because I felt like I had to justify why I was being allowed in and they weren’t. They were screaming, I was filming. They got water, I got champagne. Or prosecco. Whatever the case was, they were in the majority, but I was on the right side of the fence this time round.
As I was filming the hysterical crowd outside, a Belgian colleague tapped me on my shoulder… Gigi, on the left. Two meters away from where I was standing.
I filmed it all, Facebook lived it and kept staring at the green velvet suit that was hanging behind me. Calling my name.
Right when I thought all the hysteria was over, Gigi came downstairs. And before I knew it I was beside her taking a selfie. And we talked. I told her I was Dutch and she asked me where I was from. I was on team Amsterdam, she was on team Rotterdam. And by the way, since we were bonding now anyway… I was the one who high-fived her during the Tommy Hilfier finale. “Was that really you??” It goes without saying that Gigi and I are getting our friendship tattoos tomorrow.
Then when Gigi finally did leave, I chatted with Nicola Maramotti, my very cherished Max Mara contact. Married with the son of the founder of Max Mara and responsible for all the international stores. To shake off all the glamour of the day, I walked towards my love and I’s favorite restaurant: Rosy y Gabriele. Nothing fancy, but as Italian as you could imagine. Aquarium on the left, somewhat failed paintings all over the place, a bunch of families and the best Italian food ever. The waiter recognized me and gave me a small table until I spotted my Belgian colleagues. This place was their hidden gem too. We ate, we talked, we drank. About fashion, about life and mostly about food too.
Milan, I love you. Because you always give me things I never see coming.