Ottima guida Magnifiscent
Thread: Milan - IT
After seeing some people are planning to visit Italy and in particular knowing a bit about Milan, here are some interesting shops located there:
- Corso Como, 10 - Corso Como, 10 - Milan (MM2 Garibaldi): the first and probably the most famous "concept store" in Italy, it definitely has set a benchmark for all others. Here, Mrs Franca Sozzani started in late 80's to sell emerging designers clothes, scents, jewels and much more, mixed with rare vintage pieces. All is completed by a nice alternative books and music shop at 1st floor and a coffee room where the visitor can find a bit of relax after the shop. Here are available, besides their Corso Como scents, CGD, Piguet, Diptyque, Miller Harris, Costume National, Caron, Malle, Dior.
- Acqua di Parma Boutique - Via del Gesù, 3 - Milan (MM3 Montenapoleone): the first boutique of this ancient italian brand, where you can find scents and gooming products, but also towels, etc, all naturally designed in their institutional yellow!
- Profumo - Via Brera, 6 - Milan (MM2 Lanza): one of the most interesting shops downtown, is located in Brera, the artistic quarter full of art galleries and nice bistrot. Here you can find Acqua di Parma, Aesop, Art of shaving, Bruno Acampora, CSP, Creed, Czech&Speake, Diptyque, Esteban, Malle, Geodesis, G. F.Trumper, Keiko mecheri, Kiels, Villoresi, MPG, Mariage Frères, Miller Harris, Montale, Reminescence, Royall Lyme Bermuda, The Thymes.
- British Box - Via Melzo 36 - Milano (MM1 Porta Venezia); http://www.britishbox.it: another very interesting shops downtown, is located in the Porta Venezia (the ancient Austo-Hungarian doors of Milan) quarter, full also of nice bars. As they say, since 1990 this is a small corner of United Kingdom, an authentic concentrate of english tastes, flavours and humors. Here you can find also porcelains, teas, shaving tools and scents of many houses as Bond, Aesop, Acqua di Genova, The Art of Shaving, Caswell&Massey, Clive Christian, Czech&Speake, Geo F. Trumper, Tann Rokka, Maitres Tailleurs Paris, Maria Amalia, Miller Harris, Penhaligon's, Robert Piguet, Royall Lime Bermuda Ltd, Xpec.
- Officina del Profumo Farmaceutica di Santa Maria Novella - Corso Magenta, 22 - Milan (MM2 S. Ambrogio)- Tel. +39 02 80 53 695: here, at few steps from Santa Maria delle Grazie Church and the famous Cenacolo of Leonardo Da Vinci, you can find all the line of this ancient florentine brand.
- Etro Profumi - Via Verri (corner Via Bigli) - Milano (MM3 Montenapoleone): This small but nice shop is located in the fashion quarter, near the Etro boutique (which sells scents too) but is focused on Etro scents only.
- La Rinascente - Corso Vittorio Emanuele (close to Duomo square) probably the oldest mall downtown. Since beginning of XX century it sells several kind of stuff from dresses to home stuff. At earth floor you can find jewelry and scents department selling the most famous designer scents, from Armani to Dior (also the boutique scents), from Guerlain to YSL.
- MAZZOLARI - Corso Monforte(corner San Babila square). One of the most well-stocked perfume shop downtown. Aside many commercial and niche brands (cartier, chanel, guerlain etc. but also Lubin, desprez, goutal, and many others) they also have their own perfumes and ancillars. They also have nice gift stuff and some antique rarities. The boutique features also a spa on the first floor. Definitely a must see
Last edited by Magnifiscent; 29th October 2007 at 10:09 AM.
The travel season is just starting and while hosting visitors from Germany, I decided to extend our excursions into northern Italy. So we spent a wonderful, sunny day in Milano's splendid center and also visited some shops. I had taken a copy of Magnifiscents good perfume guide along, and selected two shops for a visit:
# Officina del Profumo Farmaceutica di Santa Maria Novella - Corso Magenta, 22 - Milan (MM2 S. Ambrogio)
We found that shop easily via MM2, but somehow decided for another stazione than Ambrogio. A map & some street contacts (in english & italian) brought us there in 15 min. I wouldn't call it a few steps from Maria delle Grazie though, but revisiting that lovely compound was also most welcome! Very special the procedure of being allowed in (ringing a bell) and the polite and warm welcome by two lovelely older ladies!
Somehow the procedure of advice asking and receiving in a perfume shop seems to differ from country to country. I would have loved them to praise and recommend one or the other scent, maybe. But while being very kind and helpful, they must have considered it more polite to leave any judgement or selection to us. I came forward with the only one I had looked up in the directory. You guys mentioned it more than others, or was it just 'the leather'? - Peau d'Espagne. This smelled rather strange at the start, kind of medicinal, even to me who neither finds Piper Nigrum nor Knize10 medicinal. P.d'E. eventually changed into something brighter (and really pleasant after two hours when it had survived the few other scents I had tried meanwhile). Still, I was not sure at all, as long as I was in the store. I bought some rose water and soap as gifts, but left even without a tiny sample of anything (- I now believe I want to buy that next time in Milano).
To me, the whole experience was like a trip back into history. I liked that very much, even Lily of the valley smelled strangely different, dusty to me, 'very concentrated' to other noses. Should we have asked for samples? This was my first, if late, entry into an original Italian perfume shop, that must have made me shy . The lovely ladies of SMN had drawn us a pencil path right onto my city map, to go to the next shop:
# Profumo - Via Brera, 6 - Milan, Acqua di Parma, I believe they have the whole line, including the blue series, which is hard to find in Switzerland. I tried some piney cologne from that. The sales clerk (male - knowledgeable, well routined) wanted me to try some F. Malles. It was an interesting exchange. Except for Guerlains, I happen to know Malle scents best. I did try Carnal Flower in spite of his advice, as that was the only scent I had never smelled yet. We both agreed - most of theirs are extraordinary and modern, but rather feminine frags. I regret having forgotten to ask for Bermuda Lime, after all, it was already like summer in Milano! He suggested to try Yerbamate, I denied, thinking of Spezie - unfortunate error!
He sprayed strip after strip for me, and my nose was numbed in no time! Fortunately, I could still buy something safely: Piper Nigrum which was on my list and now sits (still unoped) next to my number one scent. Again - no samples offered or given.
I must come back - if not for PdE, at least for Corso Como 10! But I think we did not bad at all for this first time. Thanks to you, Magnifiscent! Your listing the various shops' main brands has been very helpful too! Now I know exactly what a little guide must contain for the foreign tourist with no time, and for the ones with a little extra time for this kind of shopping - like basenoters may have?
'Il mondo dei profumi è un universo senza limiti: una fraganza puo rievocare sensazioni, luoghi, persone o ancora condurre in uno spazio di nuove dimensioni emozionali' L. V.
Just a little message to let you know that "profumum" scents are avaible at: profumeria Più Bella, corso di porta romana 99 (via degli orti). I think this is the only shop who sells Profumum.
Un update on the Profumum scents - they now can be found exclusively at
Largo Treves 1
André Gas opened his costume jewellery shop where the tiny L'Artisan Parfumeur was. Besides the Profumum line, you can find also his Ensoleille Moi fragrance there.
Last edited by Lady_in_Black; 12th February 2008 at 08:04 AM. Reason: corrected address
I'll stop wearing black when they make something darker
Calé Fragranze d'Autore in Via Santa Maria Alla Porta 5 Milano (very near to the Santa Maria Novella shop), is a perfumery run by the chemist and fragrance expert Silvio Levi, who is the italian importer of big brands like Creed and Knize and of Les Nez (I don't think anyone else sells this brand in Milan). They sell some exclusive italian brands like Profumi di Pantelleria and Acqua di Biella and now they have created their own Calé line, exclusive to this shop and definitely worth smelling.
A handful of other addresses:
Corso Genova 28- beautiful selection of brands (Creed, Miller et Bertaux, Ineke, Knize, Different Company, Penhaligon's and many many others) and a very qualified and liberal- with-samples owner.
Profumeria via Spadari- close to the Pharmacy. Many brands and a super efficient lady at the counter.
the new Excelsior department store, in the premises of a former cinema: Lutens, Miller et Bertaux, Armani Privè, Different Company, Creed, Etro,Huitième Art and many others)
Thanks for you all for this thread, together with the recent blog post about Italian colognes it was of great help to me when I visited Milan a few weeks ago.
My overall experience of the city was a bit two-folded. On the other hand, there seemed to be an abundant selection of luxury brands available (eg. Creed in several places), but on the other hand, finding smaller local brands proved to be difficult. Of course, it might be that I just didn't find the right stores. Basic cosmetic and perfume stores had the big mainstream brands (Prada and the likes), but not much more. Bigger department stores like Rinascente on the cathedral square had well-stocked counters of the the usual suspects like Guerlain. Finally from Corso Vittorio Emanuele II was found a superfancy department store (perhaps Excelsior mentioned by nonnative above?) where I could try Acqua Nobile by Nobile 1942. So if you know where one can find the colognes Marika Vecchiattini mentions in her blog post, please do share the knowledge!
Narcus wrote so nicely about his visit in Officina del Profumo Farmaceutica di Santa Maria Novella shop on Corso Magenta and as I headed there encouraged by his story, I'd like to share my experience too.
Again you had to ring the bell to gain entrance, and the service was wery polite. I too had browsed through their selection of products on their website on beforehand, which was a lucky thing to do, as the SMN shop was quite unsuitable for learning about the products on your own. The shop itself was small and its walls were lined with glass-fronted cupboards. Everything was shelved inside these cabinets. In the middle of the shop was a fairly large table, on which tester bottles were arranged so that it was evident you were not expected to go through them by yourself. Instead, you had to ask for every blotter which the salesperson then prepared for you. As the SMN has a VAST selection of perfumes, I found the shop experience a bit disappointing. Anyhow, after eyeing the perfumes behind the glass doors, I asked to try "Nostalgia" which on the website sounded very unusual indeed, for such a manufacturer as a monastery perfumer. The young man attending us smirked, uttered a knowing "Ah!", adding "it is very powerful". It was. And also great. I won't tell you more, go and try for yourselves.
Alas, the shop sells only 100 ml bottles which with a 90 € price tag were a bit too pricey for me. I ended up buying a packet of Armenian paper for 12 €. And now I regret for leaving the Nostalgia to the shop. Ha!
Nostalgia has a wonderful top note, but regrettably, that note lasts very little. So I didn't buy it either. I love the Armenian paper, too: it works wonderfully also if you leave it in a drawer - you don't have to burn it if you don't want to.
Since we're at it, I think I mentioned already, but when I was there two weeks ago there was a little store which was closing and was selling Profumi del Forte at 70 Eur (half price). I forget the name, but it was one block south of the via Spadari Peck and Cale' (could it be the profumeria Spadari?)
If you happen to be slightly off the city centre, but close to the popular commercial artery of corso Buenos Aires, you can find a delightful little perfumery run by two kind ladies- mother and daughter. The offering is wide and tastefully chosen: from the usual suspects- Dyptique, L'Artisan, Montale- to the whole range of Histoires de Parfums and its satellites (Alice and Peter etc), to Pierre Guillaume's Huitième Art and Phaedon, Olfactive Studio and some Italian niche brands. Home fragrances, bath and body products and selected cosmetics as well.
36 viale Regina Giovanna
(MM Porta Venezia)
"Your fragrance with a fume of iodine" L. Cohen
I live in Milano and I can easly tell you that Mazzolari is ghe best shop in Italy!! the have all that you want!! Amouage, creed, SL, diptyque, tom ford, all the guerlain exclusive, by kilian ect!!
I bought some SoOuds from an eBay seller in Milan. The receipt had an address on it, so I thought I'd post it here:
Via Candiani 131 Milano
P. Iva 12465860158
From looking at the website (http://www.bovisarock.it) it appears they sell a variety of cool things, including these fragrance brands: Teo Cabanel, SoOud, SixScents, Nasomatto, MariaLux, Profumi di Ambiente and Costume National.
Is there anywhere that sells Profumum Roma online in Italy? I hear it's much cheaper than many other places.
About the CALE store - while their own brand is kinda lackluster - the store also carries several great niche lines like Jovoy, Majda Bekkali, Marc Buxton, Clive Christian, Humierci & Graef, Les Nez, Floris, and lots of men’s grooming supplies from Taylor of Old Bond Street and Truefitt & Hill. Seeing a display of Crest toothpaste was quite humorous.
One BIG reason to visit the store is the exposition on the back where they have discontinued and rare fragrances that you can touch and spray – but painfully not buy. The Creed selection is beyond amazing with several tester bottles of Tabarome (which is just as amazing as people say it is), Aubepine Acacia, and Cypres Musc. I hate to say this, but holding the bottle of Tabarome is the first time I was ever tempted to dine-and-dash – but common sense quickly kicked in and told me that was the wrong thing to do. If you visit Milan, I strongly recommend you stop by the store to check out all the niche and experience the classic fragrances that you will not find anywhere else.
Speaking of stores I strongly recommend – Profumo (Via Brera 6) feels like a mom and pop shop hosted by the lovely Susanna. Lines include Frederic Malle (they have the scent column), Le Labo (they had all the city exclusives which were fun to sniff), Diptyque, Jovoy, Mancera, Andy Tauer, Montale, and more. Both SAs were incredibly knowledgeable and FRIENDLY. I sniffed the Tableau de Parfums which I had never seen before – Miriam was nice but Loretta kinda took me away as a sweet candied amber. The line is made by Andy Tauer with a filmmaker exploring women’s memories of their mother’s perfumes.
Across the street from Profumo is a Olfatorrio Bar A Perfumes – which has a bar set-up stocked with perfumes (kind of obvious). Lines include Lostmarch, L’artisan perfumer, Piver, Miller Harris, and the connecting Penhaligon’s store. I got kind of a salesman kind of vibe from the place, so I didn’t stick around long.
Check out my new blog http://www.NotableScents.net
Via Ausonio, 16
Here's a sort of (bit messy!) brands list: http://www.ylangylang.it/joomla/index.php/profumeria
Also Cargo Hi-Tech, Piazza XXV Aprile, 12 (just round the corner down Corso Como) has a home/personal fragrances area, they sell some Laboratorio Olfattivo scents and other I can not remember at the moment (perhaps Nasomatto and Diptyque, but I am not sure).
An update regarding 10 Corso Como, their range changes quite often - currently they have:
Comme des Garçons
The Different Company
Les Liquides Imaginaires
Last edited by Colin Maillard; 14th April 2014 at 10:09 PM.
Adding the concept store Antonioli, via Pasquale Paoli 1 - they should stock:
Comme des G.
Histoires de Parfums
Mad et Len
Cor Sine Labe Doli
any recommendations for discount shops, by chance? I will be visiting Milan in a few weeks.
"Your fragrance with a fume of iodine" L. Cohen
A few updates.
La Rinascente is undergoing some renovations and some fragrance counters have changed place or are missing..
The glorious Profumeria di via Spadari is no more! It closed at the beginning of March, now the mythical lady who run it- mentioned by Luca Turin in a Duftnote- is employed at the new Campomarzio70 in Perfume strret, aka via Brera. Sad news.
In via Madonnina, off Perfume Street, there's a Creed shop, apparently run by the guys of Calé- didn't ask, just spotted the SA who used to be in Calé store in Corso Magenta.
"Your fragrance with a fume of iodine" L. Cohen