Milan is not a city of hostels, or even of budget hotels. It’s a business city first and foremost, and only a tourist attraction secondarily (and it’s a distant second at that). By far the majority of the tourists I’ve seen in Milan are Japanese, and they’re here for one thing: Shopping. There are things to see and do in Milan that don’t involve shopping or banking, however, and if you’re spending time in Milan as a budget traveler there are some less expensive hotels you can consider. One I’ve stayed in and would recommend is the Hotel Piemonte.
The Hotel Piemonte is a short walk (they say it’s 200 meters, and I’m a terrible judge of distances – especially in meters – but I’ll trust them, it wasn’t far) from the Wagner Metro stop on the red line, and from there it’s just a few minutes on the subway to get to Duomo Square. It’s also not far from the Fiera, the old convention area in Milan. The area is primarily residential, although there are also some businesses in the immediate neighborhood, but it’s pretty quiet in the evenings and at night. There are lots of restaurants and cafes nearby, however, especially around the Piazza Piemonte. When the husband and I ate out within walking distance of the hotel we were often the only non-Italians in the restaurants we chose. (We usually take that as a very good sign.)
The staff at Hotel Piemonte was extremely courteous, helpful and friendly, and everyone who works the front desk speaks English well (along with a few other languages, usually). The included breakfast is the standard affair, with a selection of pastries, cereal, juice, milk, yogurt, fruit and some sliced cheese and meat. For me, the free WiFi was a big plus – you just need the secret code from the front desk, but it doesn’t cost a thing and it doesn’t make you feel like you’ve got to rush through anything as the clock on your internet connection runs down. That’s stress I’m happy to do without, thankyouverymuch.
L-R: The breakfast area; the Piemonte’s breakfast spread
During our stay at Hotel Piemonte we were in two different rooms (they moved us to a bigger one after a couple of days when it became available). In the first the bathroom was teeny – the entire room, let alone the shower stall, could only hold one person – but the bed was soft and comfortable. In the second, the bathroom was huge and bright and the room itself was much more spacious – but the bed was rock hard. I found it extraordinarily uncomfortable, but the husband slept like a log. If you have a preference for bed softness, you’ll want to mention that when you’re booking.
Prices at Hotel Piemonte are really reasonable, especially for Milan, although they do spike during the high season and whenever there’s a fair or event going on in town (which is often). But if you’re planning some time in Milan and it’s not during one of those times when the prices can go up, the Hotel Piemonte is a place I’d highly recommend.
Location: Via Ruggiero Settimo 1 20146 Milano
Contact Information: tel: +39 02 463 173, fax: +39 02 4819 3316
What’s Included: breakfast, telephone & television in the rooms, safe boxes in the rooms, hairdryer by request
Features: all rooms have en-suite bathrooms, 24-hour reception, free WiFi, elevators, private indoor parking available for a daily fee, bar near reception desk, luggage storage for before check-in or after check-out
Transportation Options: Few minutes walk from Wagner stop on Metro line 2 (red line); bus line 61 runs nearby and the 16 and 18 trams stop near Piazza Piemonte; 800 meters from Fiera di Milano
Payment Accepted: major credit cards, cash