In 2018, for the first time, Milan won the ranking for the most livable city in Italy (according to Sole 24Ore newspaper). The capital of Lombardy has earned the podium for the quality of life thanks to the high level of wealth and economy, a good employment rate and its raising technology level. A big thank you goes to the local people of Milan too, the people that strive every day to make the city more efficient, creative, alive, welcoming, rich in opportunities and events. With so many cultural and leisure experiences, boredom is not a factual word in Milan.
After Expo2015 gave an extensive exposure to the city, Milan rapidly developed as a tourism destination, for both travelers and the local people. Both have the opportunity to visit the city with new eyes and uncover its most unknown, magical and hidden corners.
This all contributed to further boost the experiences offered by this eclectic city. Artists as well have begun to show their love for Milan, and especially photographers with the gift to picture and show a completely new perspective on the city’s past, present, and future.
Among them, we had the pleasure to meet Elena Galimberti. Elena is a landscape architect with a deep passion for photography. This is why she decided to tell the daily Milan through her pictures: to show the beauty one can seek in the ordinary, combined with the desire to share it with the whole world.
Her passion led her to a full exhibition of her work in 2018, where she showcased a selection of photographs dedicated to her city such as the ones called “on My Mi(lan)d” and “CitAzioni”. Her photos convey the simplicity behind the city of Milan, away from the stereotypical idea of superficiality it is usually linked to. A glimpse on the City Life or the Vertical Forest, a man on a bicycle followed by a tram, acrobats in the middle of the traffic, a coffee break or a hug: in her pictures, you will always find simple daily life moments that radiate beauty and positivity in the city landscape.
“Every place can be a new discovery“, says the artist who walks through the city from the center to the suburbs, while taking pictures and looking for that kind of beauty that can be found everywhere if you are sensitive enough to capture it.
Passion & love for a destination: this is how the most extraordinary experience in Milan comes to life
Elena deeply loves Milan, from its skyscrapers and pavé to its ancient frescoed churches. She had the opportunity to rediscover the pleasure of walking around the neighborhoods with her camera after she spent many years working in Lisbon. This is why, she opened the Facebook page Il Milanese Abbellito (“the handsome Milanese”), which is the counterpart to the very well-known page “il Milanese Imbruttito” (“the ugly Milanese”). Elena wants to tell the events that animate the city as well as its people, from locals to the associations that every day tirelessly contribute to taking care of the city.
If we follow her train of thoughts, her dreams and her extraordinary look at the world, we will definitely understand why she loves to tell the story of “her Milan”. Her photos show Milan as a living space, where you can find inspiration every day: this is why she decided to share its beauty with everyone near and far.
In fact, Elena’s love for Milan is not limited to photography. Thanks to Artès, her passion helped her transform her desire to share the beauty and emotions of the city into a well-crafted experiential product: the travel experience called “Milano, red roses, kisses & pictures”.
An original and unique experience in Milan: the story of Elena & Artès
Between Elena and Artès, it was love at first sight: that kind of love that lasts forever. Elena took part in one of the very first seminars for Experiential Tour Operators by Artès; since then, the experience she crafted during the seminar – “Milano, red roses, kisses & pictures” – rapidly became one of the top experiences of Artès listing.
We are very happy to have Elena here today to share with us a bit more about herself and her experience with Artès.
R: Hi Elena, thanks for being with us today! Can you tell us a bit more about how Artès won you over?
E: I had just returned from Lisbon and was discovering and falling in love with a new Milan. The Expo was just around the corner and there was a lot of excitement in the air. I was already discussing the potential of experiential tourism in Milan with other friends when I met Maurizio Testa, the creator of the Artès project. I was immediately fascinated by the idea of starting something straight out of my passion and transforming it into something I could share.
So I decided to dive into this new adventure. I did not want to limit the experience to the beauty, everyday life moments, people’s behaviors only. I wanted to bring them to life and make them unique and unrepeatable through my camera.
And here it is: after joining one of the first Artès seminars, the story of “Milano, red roses, kisses & pictures” was born.
R: “Milano, red roses, kisses & pictures”? It makes me think of the famous advertisement for “Baci Perugina”, the little Italian chocolates with such a romantic name: “kisses”.
E: There’s actually a bond between the experience I crafted and Baci chocolates. My story begins in the Pinacoteca of Brera, in front of the famous painting “The Kiss” by Hayez. It was said that by reinterpreting this painting in the ’20s, Federico Seneca, artistic director of Perugina, created the famous scene that since then became the logo of Perugina’s chocolates.
In “Milano, red roses, kisses & pictures” experience, I have the pleasure to share with lovers the romantic side of Milan that will become the stage of their love story.
There’s nothing more extraordinary than an ordinary kiss or a hug between two people at the corner of a hidden courtyard, by the edge of a canal or privately under the umbrella while it’s raining.
I want to capture those moments where Milan shows its most romantic, secret and intimate side. My camera wants to be the magic wand that makes these moments an eternal and unforgettable treasure.
R: Now I am even more intrigued… What happens to the lovers when they take part in the experience you offer?
E: The best way to find out is to join this “Story to live together”, as we call it in the seminars. My “Story to live together” is made for lovers and it’s perfect for those who want to discover Milan with a fresh new look: it will be like living in a small romantic fairy tale for few hours. Couples will surely bring home far more than a deep memory of this unforgettable experience.
Elena’s story shows us how easy is to turn your passion into a delightful job. People’s curiosity, desire to share their experiences and passion always add a great and unique value to destinations – even those widely known as the city of Milan.