Milan may not have the rolling green hills of Tuscany or the beaches in Puglia, but the first weeks of December in Milan are one of the most exciting times of the year. Everything is decorated, market stalls selling interesting gift ideas are everywhere, samples abound, and there are people everywhere!
Reminder: Two contests in progress – Comment on my Italy Gift Guide to win a collector’s tin of Illy Caffe’, and comment on my Dolce Italiano: Mosaic Biscotti post for a chance to win a personalized, signed copy of Gina DePalma’s Dolce Italiano cookbook! Comment away and good luck! Also check Bleeding Espresso’s Ricotta Pound Cake for another chance to comment today!
Last year, there were even two huge Christmas trees meters from each other in the Piazza del Duomo, though I’ve heard the Swarovski tree is not returning this year. December is also a great time to enjoy a delicious cioccolata calda or perfect-year-round gelato at one of the gelaterias on the Tour del Gelato.
Here are some happenings for December 2007 in Milan. I also included a list of concerts and ongoing exhibitions at the end of the list. Feel free to add yours in the comments if I left one off!
November 30 – December 7 2007
Il Natale dei 100 alberi d’autore
For the first time this event, the Christmas of 100 Trees, will be held in Milan (it’s normally in Rome). It is an auction of individually created-designed Christmas trees, with proceeds benefiting the Cystic Fibrosis organization in Italy.
- Location: Milano – Palazzo Reale, Sala delle cariatidi
- Website: Il Natale dei 100 alberi d’autore
December 1 – 9, Saturday – Sunday (next)
L’Artigiano in Fiera – The Artisan Fair
One of my favorite events of the year, I spend hours looking at foodstuffs, watching craftmakers, and looking for gifts. It’s where I collect most of the ingredients for my Menu for Hope basket (which I hope to repeat this year). See you there!
- Location: Fiera Milano City – Metro Amendola Fieramilanocity or Lotto Fieramilanocity
- Hours: weekends 10.00 to 23.00, weekdays 15.00 to 23.00
- Website: Artigiano in Fiera
December 2, Sunday
Futbol (soccer) Milan versus Juventus.
- Time and Place: 15.00 (TBC) Stadio Meazza San Siro, Via Piccolomini, 5 – Metro1: Lotto, Bus 16.
Milano City Marathon
I can’t think of a better (sarcasm) time to have a marathon. Riding my bike to work in the morning is nearly severing my fingers off from frostbite, but I’m sure the runners would love some support and encouragement!
- Time/Place: 9.20am, Piazza Castello
- Website: Milano City Marathon
December 4, Tuesday
AC Milan v. Celtic UEFA (European Championship) cup
- Time and Place19:45 – Stadio Meazza San Siro, Via Piccolomini, 5 – Metro1: Lotto, Bus 16
- Website: http://www.uefa.com/
December 7, Friday
Opening Night at Teatro alla Scala: Wagner’s Tristan und Isolde
If you need information about getting tickets to La Scala, you’re probably out of luck for opening night, but read my post on Last-minute tickets at La Scala. They only recently called off the strike yesterday, so for now opening night is saved!
December 7-8-9, Friday – Sunday
Fiera dei Obej Obej – Oh Bej Oh Bej – O bei O bei
I’ve never seen so many different spellings (pronounced – oh-BAY) This festival used to be on and around the grounds of the ancient church of Sant’Ambrogio, but in 2006 it was moved to the Castello Sforzesco grounds which are much larger and good for crowds. Hundreds of booths selling gift items, and food – it’s worth walking around while you’re in the center.
The Dalai Lama in Milan
- Time and Place: Palasharp (MM: Lampugnano) – see the website for program details
- Website:: http://www.dalailama-milano2007.org/
December 7 – January 6
Christmas City Park
In addition to Christmas trees all over the city, brought to you by the City Hall of Milan, there should also be an ice skating rink at the gardens in Via Palestro. Check the website (Italian) for specific tree locations, or just keep your eyes open!
December 22, Saturday
Michael Bolton will give a free concert with 60 members of Ennio Morricone’s orchestra in Piazza del Duomo.
December 23, Sunday
Mercatone dell’Antiquariato sul Naviglio Grande – Large Antique market on the Grand Canal (Naviglio) – Website: http://www.navigliogrande.mi.it/antiqa.htm (in Italian)
Futbol/Soccer: Inter versus Milan. Stadio Meazza San Siro, Via Piccolomini, 5· Metro: Lotto, Bus 16.
Concerts (Italian artists, you’re in Italy!)
- Ligabue – Milano, DatchForum – from Dec 12 to 21st
- Francesco Renga – Milano, MazdaPalace – Dec. 4th
- Subsonica – Milano, DatchForum – Dec 6th
- Tiromancino – Milano, Rolling Stone – Dec. 15th
Ongoing events and exhibitions
Annisettanta. Il decennio lungo del secolo breve – 1970s – The long decade of a brief century. Through March 2008.
David Lachapelle – More than 350 of his works are displayed, including a premiere of a new series. Through January 6, 2008. Official exhibition website.
Vivienne Westwood. 35 anni di moda – 35 years of Fashion – Dedicated to the designer, there will be exclusive outfits from her personal collection. Until January 20, 2008.