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Buon Viaggio Green Travelers: Milan, Italy

Common knowledge is that the Italians are on the cutting edge of fashion, industry and nightlife. Becoming environmentally friendly may now be added to the list. The city of Milan seems to be in the forefront of Italian cities getting in the “Green” act. The city recently announced a major Eco update in the form of the world’s largest solar rooftop – solar array! This massive photovoltaic system will cover 2.9 million sq ft of the roof, and carry a peak capacity of 18 megawatts. Milan also hosts the Salone Internazionale del Mobile, a green design furniture show, the premier design event of the year. And Green Tourism is finally starting to find its way in this bustling city.

logo_ecoworldAn Eco friendly hotel in a major city in Italy is hard to find, but only because there is an absense of advertising for the green initiative. We did, however, find three hotels we could call comfortably green. First on the list is the Hotel La Residenza. Located in a quiet area of Milan, La Residenza is still convenient, by public transportation, to all of the city’s interesting sites. La Residenza is among the ecological hotels certified by the prestigious Ecoworldhotel environmental quality brand. Designed with the application of the principles of bio-architecture, the hotel offers purified ionized air in common spaces, a wide range of energy saving measures and use of recyclable materials. Recycled paper, corn based pens, vegetable ink and toiletry sets are all Eco Friendly. Rooms are comfortable and relaxing.

hotel-mitoThe Hotel Mito, located near the airport, is technically the most Eco Friendly of the three. It is a certified Class A Eco Hotel, according to the European Union-approved C.E.N.E.D. With a combination of renewable energies like solar and geothermal, it is said to have -zero- environmental impact. This hotel is a business oriented, Hi-Tech hotel. It offers free shuttle to the Milan Expo Center, a gym, free Wi-Fi, indoor garage parking, a fine restaurant, and reasonable rates.

ariston-hotelLast but not least is the  Ariston Hotel . It claims to be the first Bio hotel in Milan.

it was built according to ecological, minimalist design. It features green furnishings, organic food and free bicycles for touring the city. Since there is no mention of a focus on energy savings or waste reduction, it has a light green rating. The location is fantastic; just a five minute walk from the Piazza Del Duomo and steps from the tramway that leads to many other famous sites in Milan. The hotel bar offers herbal beverages prepared with purified water and the breakfast buffet has a special “bio” corner, offering organic foods. Rooms are small (surprise, surprise) but bathrooms are large with jacuzzi jetted tubs, and each room is equiped with LCD TV and Wi-Fi. What else could you ask for?

The city of Milan is not driven by tourism as are so many other Italian cities. It is shopping that seems to be the religion of the locals and a favorite pass time for travelers as well. Milan also boasts Avant-Garde theatre, and a hopping club scene and a variety of tempting, excellent restaurants. While Milan is a hub for risk-taking contemporary art, and a vibrant center for business and industry, it’s lifestyle is what really counts. To find green issues becoming important in the Italian lifestyle is a welcome wonder in itself!

Written by Carla Scott for

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