Best hotels in Milan 2023: From luxury escapes to budget B&Bs


While Milan is probably best known as being Italy’s fashion capital, it’s also a fascinating mosaic of vibrant districts. The Duomo and high-class shopping are outstanding, but venture beyond those and you’ll find all that makes this creative city tick.

From strolls along the old waterways of artsy Navigli to bustling cafes and bars lining the route where 18th-century boats used to pass by. For art, go to the cobbled, cultured streets of Brera, where you can visit the La Scala Theatre and the Old Masters at the Pinacoteca di Brera.

Shoppers can lose themselves in the streets of Milan’s Quadrilatero d’Oro, the golden rectangle of cobbled streets – Via Monte Napoleone, Via Sant’Andrea, Via Manzoni and Via della Spiga – near the Duomo where high fashion rules. While Milan has plenty of five-star luxurious palaces to match its glittering fashion boutiques, there’s also a wide range of more-affordable hotels to match all budgets during a trip to Italy.

Neighbourhood: Navigli

The hotel recently added a new gym and opened its own members club

(Aethos Milan)

This quirky boutique hotel, crammed with vintage and antique furnishings, perfectly suits the bohemian atmosphere of the Navigli area. The golden age of both travel and sport is evoked in the rooms and shared areas, with old leather trunks and sporting gear artfully strewn around. There’s a decadent air about the Doping Club cocktail bar, and there’s also excellent food in Zaïa restaurant.

Neighbourhood: Navigli

Wind down with a vino in the courtyard terrace


Overlooking Navigli Grande Canal, this warm, four-star boutique hotel offers views of the canals as well as a large courtyard terrace and an inviting lounge. Rooms are pared back but have exposed beams and parquet floors, and it’s worth upgrading to one of the canalside rooms. The Bugandè restaurant offers a mix of Piedmont and Italian cuisine within its brick-lined walls.

Neighbourhood: Porta Garibaldi

This B&B is warm and welcoming, with a vintage feel

(LaFavia Milano)

This four-room B&B is set in a 19th-century townhouse in a handy spot near Porta Garibaldi railway station. It’s a warm, welcoming place, with a wonderfully eclectic approach to design in its mix of mid-20th-century décor and bits of vintage and India thrown in. Two of the rooms have little kitchenettes and direct access to the really rather adorable garden terrace, which is open to all guests.

Price: Doubles from €120 (£105), including breakfast

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Neighbourhood: Quadrilatero d’Oro

The traditional rooms come with polished wood and honey marble


Have all the boutiques within staggering distance at Hotel Manzoni, which is set in an elegant 19th-century townhouse. Its traditional rooms are a study in polished wood and honey marble, and if you splash out on a suite you can enjoy views of Milan from your rooftop terrace. The sophisticated vibe extends to the Wine Bar & Bistrot, where Piedmont dishes are given a delicate touch.

Neighbourhood: Piazza della Repubblica

This hotel is home to one of the most glamorous rooftop bars in Milan


One of Milan’s most glamorous bars happens to be the Radio Rooftop Bar at the ME Milan Il Duca, so you might as well be in the thick of it. Contemporary rooms have Milan’s signature understated style – a cool minimalism that retains its warmth. The restaurant, STK Milan, draws its influence from New York’s steakhouses, so bring a big appetite.

Neighbourhood: Porta Volta

The Viu suite living room has a calming aesthetic

(Hotel Viu Milan)

At Hotel Viu, you can cool off in Milan’s first rooftop pool and take in panoramic views, which, sensibly, is still open during the very important aperitivo hour. Inside, the interiors are as sleek and design conscious as you would expect in Milan, with neutral tones and Molteni&C furnishings. Food comes courtesy of Michelin-starred chef Giancarlo Morelli and his creative, seasonal menu.

Neighbourhood: Tortona

The modern, light-filled rooms have attractive minimalist furnishings


Hovering on the western edges of Navigli, Nhow Milano is typical of the area’s disused industrial buildings that have been given a new lease of life. Colour is everywhere in this former electrics factory, from the original works that change every six months to the bright, modern, light-filled rooms with attractive minimalist furnishings. When the funky terrace isn’t being used for Milan Design Week events, you can chill out on the wonderfully over-the-top chairs. There’s a hotel restaurant and bar too, all decked out in the same fun, colourful way.

Neighbourhood: Porta Monforte

This 1893 neo-Gothic building featues a mix of original features and Scandi design

(Babila Hostel)

Contemporary and classic come together in Babila Hostel, set in a beautiful 1893 neo-Gothic building featuring a mix of original features and Scandi design. There are a few private rooms, but it’s mainly dorms, including three just for women. It’s very much a sociable spot, with a buzzing bar that’s a magnet for locals at aperitivo hour. Unwind in the “relax room”, grab a console in the games room or work out in the basement gym. There’s also a communal kitchen and a large convivial terrace that’s attached to the bar.

Neighbourhood: Porta Nuova

The hotel’s cocktail bar is the perfect place to end a long day (or start a long evening)


You can feel a sense of occasion when you walk through the sprawling front terrace of NH Milano Palazzo Moscova, which was built in 1840 as Milan’s first railway station. Behind its impressive neoclassical façade is a stylish modern interior, with sleek, individually designed bedrooms. Head to the vaulted basement for a workout in the gym and a session in the spa. Both the Forte Milano restaurant and cocktail bar are intimate spaces, the former specialising in Mediterranean cuisine.

Neighbourhood: Corso Sempione

Rooms feature some Japanese touches


Asia meets Italy in this warm, colourful hotel set in a 19th-century former printworks near the City Life district. Objects from all over Asia collected by the architect-owner are displayed in the lobby, while the rooms combine various elements of early to mid-20th-century design and add a few Japanese touches. Its crowning glory is the panoramic rooftop spa, where you can take in city views from the bubbling waters of the hot tub. Afterwards, head to Sophia’s restaurant, for some Italian flavours.

Neighbourhood: Corso Genova

With only seven rooms and suits, it’s deserving of its boutique hotel label

(Vico Milano)

Small is beautiful in Vico Milano – with only seven rooms and suites, it truly deserves its boutique hotel label. Its setting has a fascinating backstory: first it was a factory producing Legnano racing bikes, then a studio and showroom for the Bungai fashion brand owned by the Baccheschi Berti family, who now run the hotel. Finely crafted furnishings from Tuscany, Sicily, Greece and Iran complement the glossy Moroccan tiles in the bathrooms. Rooms and suites are bright and airy, in contrast to the clubby atmosphere of the House Bar where you can sample the family’s Tuscan wines.

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