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Campari Fashion Avenue with Associazione MonteNapoleone By Melanie Payge

March 30, 2016


The streets were beautifully decorated with red carpets and butterflies hanging from the lamps.


First stop VERSACE gets my “Best Window Display” award.

2_Pic_compariLovely Cristina showed me all the beautiful RED displays and the bar. — This very informed Barman explained the first ever cocktail made with Campari was called the “Milano/Torino” or “MITO” (Campari, red vermouth, orange slice and lemon slice).

3_Pic_compari“Best Looking Bartender” goes to LARUSMIANI Boutiqe.  Offering me a cocktail called the “Americano” – the story goes that in the ’20’s the Italians were tired of drinking from tiny little sherry glasses and decided to create a long drink like the Americans, hence the name (Campari, red vermouth, orange slice and soda.

4_Pic_compariAt Larusmiani Boutique with Giulio.

5_Pic_compari“Best Public” four girls dressed to the Ts. How did they get their invites.  All social network savvy, they managed on FB. Congratulations!! You’ll make it big.
“Most Accommodating” award goes to BREGUET.

6_Pic_compariBrand Manager, Maurizio Marino, welcomed me and let me take pictures of his beautiful guests, example:

7_Pic_compariWith Nicola and Giuseppe. Emerging models.Thank you to Associazione MonteNapoleone and Campari for a “redly” entertaining evening. Love Melanie Payge



The Best of Milan’s Golden Quad – #1 Series – Buccellati

March 1, 2013

We can all recognize Gucci and Prada, Armani and Valentino, but Via Montenapoleone has a lot more to offer. We are going to discover every secret in the hidden courtyards and distinguished family businesses and showrooms you might not see from the sidewalks.

I’d like to start with one of the most amazing jewelers that “so” deserves to be on Via Montenapoleone. A distinguished Italian family serving Milans’ elite for 100 some years – Buccellati.

I had a brief chat with Luca Buccellati, one for the 4 partners in this family owned business created by Mario Buccellati – Luca’s Great Grandfather.

It is just so amazing in this day and age to walk into a beautiful luxurious boutique and be greeted and served by a handsome and charming gentleman by the name of Buccellati.

Their clients are faithful to the tradition of the Buccellati designs so they are able to continue to grow as a family business and not a multi-national, something quite rare in this day and age.

The jewelry designs are mainly still creations by Gian Maria Buccellati, Luca’s Uncle, who strictly still hand chooses the precious and semi precious stones, although Luca and cousin Andrea do participate on the creative side.  

While I was enjoying just being in this luxurious yet classical atmosphere I learned that their signature jewelry contains leaves, all kinds of leaves in all types and colors of gold – my favorite was a pair of earrings with vine leaves and a beautiful batch of red ruby pearls as grapes.

I also learned that Buccellati is known for their silver work and in the back of the store there is a huge display – literally perfect for a gift: wedding, housewarming, anniversary.  Tourist? — would be great to take back “Made in Italy” authentic Italian Silver (ps. and it won’t break in your


Look out, Buccellati is expanding — 2 shops going up in China, one in Chicago and a new and exciting PoP-up boutique in South Beach this summer.


Lola – Renowned Travel Blogger – Approved “The Melanie Payge Fashion Experience”

March 1, 2013

Lola – Renowned Travel Blogger – Approved “The Melanie Payge Fashion Experience”

Milan Re-Opens After Summer

October 13, 2009

Milan fashion week has come to an end while the buyers are busy placing orders, which, by the way, is fantastic news for the recovering fashion economy! Go Milano! Incredible changes have taken place in the famous Golden Quad in the last few months.

Let’s see now! Hermes has moved back home, re-inhibiting their Milan flagstore on the corner of Via Sant’Andrea and Via della Spiga, while leaving the ex-Kenzo space vacant… can not believe that there’s an unoccupied store in Via Sant’Andrea. Now to more interesting news….drum roll…. Corso Venezia has won the “Extreme Make-Over”!  Flavio Castellani, (famous Prato, Tuscany, women’s brand) has stepped into ex-Diesel Bimbo on the corner of Via della Spiga. Nero Giardini, (known for their, black, casual, very Italian, look) still has a mini-space for footwear but is opening, at #9, a significantly larger store featuring mens’ and womens’ wear as well as all leather accessories. Next door at #7 Henry Cotton’s is still “opening soon”. D & G re-opened in the same location, very cool organized look, men upstairs, women as you come in and … keep walking … it’s deep… kids in the very back.

Guiness book of world records!!!!! Giorgio Armani has, in fact, succeeded in having his name on every street in the Golden Quad. Via Montenapoleone, the most famous street hosts his mens’ collection and in the Gallery behind Iceberg is the childrens line. His Mega-Store in Via Manzoni is being transformed into a “Fashion Hotel” – The Almighty Armani could not be out-done by any competetor even jewelrey so he set out to do something more GRANDIEUR than Bulgari!  Back to the tour… Armani bags is in Via della Spiga and finally with the launch of Armani Collection in Corso Venezia – He Did It!!!! the only designer to be present on all 4 sides of the Golden Quad!

Prada is still innovative and very on top of a new “personalization” trend. Prada Sport disappeared over the summer and magically reopened in as Prada Life-Style in September. The items to be found in the store are to be found only in that store! Wow! unique items and, get this, everthing can be personalized! from desk and office accessories to ski wear.  Way to get personal Prada! Accross the street, corner of San Babile, Marlboro classics got smaller and left enough room for Missoni to open a very much needed “young or second” line M Missoni. congratulations M Missoni I like the store.  Right next door the ever respectable Neglia went through an important change, New and Improved “Neglia Sartoria”. I am so proud of them, by bringing their workshop to Milan they are able to cut prices up to 50% without changing the quality of the fabrics and workmanship. This is an example other designers should take, instead, many are cutting quality to bring down prices.

Via Bagutta, Touch & Go Temporary Store moved into the Ex- Armani Collection, what a phenomenon a Secret Pom Pom bag for €150 and down the street you may see it for € 600. it is really more of an Outlet, designer cloths at nothing prices thrown all over the place. Over the lunch hour you can not move it this place, maybe this is where we are headed… who cares where you buy it or how you acquire it as long as it has a designer label… How ever you like to buy let lead you on your shopping spree.


Milan is going on holiday

August 5, 2009

Everyone in Milan is heading to the beach.  This is the time when restaurants, bars and boutiques close for refurbishing.

Just to name a few, we have Armani Cafe on one end of Via Montenapoleone, Cova in the middle (closed the entire month for holiday) and Bar Top at the other end.

San Babila looks like a ghost town.  Since Max Mara left, the corner space has been deserted, as well as the fact that the new Albercrombie & Finch store is a never ending construction project and Armani Collection was only temporarily in Via Bagutta. 

It appears that the big name designers are all streamlining for Corso Venezia.  At the end of August you should be able to shop at the brand new Prada and Armani Collection boutiques, as well as visit D&G with an all new revamped look. If you’re planning a shopping trip in the fall, don’t risk getting lost, contact and book your personal shopper in advance. For the latest trends and information in Milan visit

Hello world!

August 5, 2009

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