artly a bar, partly a restaurant, partly a store and sometimes, a workspace too. As you are strolling through the streets of the centre of Milan, you happen to chance upon several multipurpose venues that approach “relaxation” from different angles. Opened in the heart of the city of Milan, during the past edition of the Salone del Mobile, Tom Dixon’s concept restaurant belongs to this category. The Manzoni is the perfect setting, especially during the scorching-hot summer days, to change to a slower pace, drink a cocktail and perhaps indulge in a little shopping. At n. 5 via Manzoni in fact, a stone’s throw away from the Teatro alla Scala, this new Milanese outpost for British design welcomes you in with a triumph of ceramic tiles by the Sicilian firm Made a Mano, luscious plants (as it includes the Sardinian-owned florist Art Flower Gallery), comfy armchairs, soft lighting and many products for the home, in a melting pot of different styles and ideas.
At the entrance, a restaurant that seats up to forty guests around a large table in cork, introduces you to a tunnel decorated in black-and-white Italian marble and lit up by the suspended globes Opa, part of the new collection. The overall feel here is severe, nearly monastic, although you have only to turn a corner to find yourself in a completely different environment, a sort of bright and colourful urban jungle with golden reflections. This additional space seats up to sixty people around a table in marble and behind the cocktail bar, you are able to catch a glimpse of a workspace as well as an interior design showroom.
“The restaurant is undauntedly our main attraction” Tom Dixon states. Back to the basics, in other words a menu that offers a few simple Italian dishes prepared with top quality ingredients, overseen by the Modenese chef Marta Pulini and the executive chef Smith Paredes Ynfantes. Although, The Manzoni is much more than a restaurant as it goes beyond the purview of a standard eatery. In fact, in addition to traditional Milanese and Mediterranean recipes, revisited periodically and served, from breakfast-time to dinner, on dramatic table settings by studio Arabeschi di Latte, you are able to sip a delicious cocktail until 2 am whilst listening to good music. You also have an opportunity to indulge in shopping with anything from fresh bouquets for a last-minute date to a designer accessory for your fashionista friend and you can buy the armchair you’re sitting in too (Fat, the latest piece to join the collection).
In this fluid space, every piece is on sale and hospitality is a multilateral concept. As a result, The Manzoni offers you a glimpse into the city, a break from the hot summer weather as well as a space to relax in.