Shopping in Lugano by Pamela Pintus
Lugano, being practically on the Italian-Swiss border, presents similar characteristics of Lombardy both in the territory, in the cuisine and in the culture.
Today it is considered the third most important center of the entire nation and one of the most beloved by us Italians. Its strengths are the view of the lake, the architecture and ... the shopping street!
It is well known that in every self-respecting city there is always a main street dedicated to shops and shopping, as well as there is always a historic area that contains the most beautiful artistic and architectural treasures.
We are talking about Via Nassa, the protagonist of this story and the main stage of our journey.
The charm of Via Nassa in Lugano
Born as a small group of fishermen's houses on the shores of Lake Ceresio, today it is the beating heart of the city. Via Nassa contains the memory of a long history of humble and working people who have been able to make their business a real business, but also the modernity and internationality that only certain places frequented by many tourists can demonstrate. The long shopping street is itself a monument to the city of Lugano, a destination that cannot be ignored in an itinerary, albeit short, of the most famous Swiss centers to which we recommend devoting a few hours of your day.
Let's go and discover it together, step by step, in an intense day of shopping!
A day of shopping in Lugano
Early in the morning we go to the center for a visit of the oldest monuments, squares and historic buildings. We take advantage of this to have a nice and rich breakfast in one of the many small bars in the Maghetti district and enjoy a good espresso coffee and a tasty artisan chocolate: here you know, the art of chocolate is sacred. The climate is pleasant, and the morning passes quickly through the alleys of the city. Continuing in a south-westerly direction, from the historical center it is very easy to reach Contrada Nassa, which immediately welcomes you and envelops you in its colors, its noises and the sparkling comings and goings of the tourists.
In fact, just as it is described on the many Internet pages, the long shopping street immediately strikes you. It is a paradise for fashion lovers who undoubtedly find here their natural habitat and can launch themselves relentlessly from one window to another. Starting from Piazza Riforma, where Lugano's town hall is located, and proceeding along the most famous street of the city, we find jewelers, antiques collections, small gastronomic points, perfumeries, luxury boutiques and important shops; among the main brands you can find: Hermès, Borbonese, Gucci, Brunello Cucinelli, Prada, Moncler, Ermenegildo Zegna, Louis Vuitton, Poggioli, Les Ambassadeurs and many others.
It is surprising to think that everything that a crazy expense fan can imagine is contained here, among small shops, chic shops and boutiques for connoisseurs only. Activities are generally open from 9:00/10:00 to 18:00/19:00 from Monday to Saturday. Inevitably, the long walk whets our appetite, so we decide to stop in one of the typical and historic restaurants in the center, the Bottegone del Vino, simple and cozy to taste some traditional dishes. You cannot really get to know a city without leaving out such an important part of its culture as its cuisine. So, let's order a warm "Tomino" (a typical Ticino cheese), the baked veal shank accompanied by a glass of San Zeno Merlot from the Tamborini winery. Finally, as a dessert, the very special bread cake; it is a typical cake of the local poor cuisine, prepared with stale bread soaked in milk and sugar and flavored with dried fruit and candied fruit: simple and surprising at the same time, to try!
Ciani Park and its Villa
After having been refreshed we decide to take a tour and relax at Parco Villa Ciani a park of over 60.000 square meters completely green with centuries-old trees and flower beds, here you can already smell the scent of summer. Inside, you can also visit the Museo di Storia Naturale. Once we have "recharged the batteries" we go back to wander through the shop windows, again for a while 'before returning. When the shops close, we stop for a few minutes to enjoy the magnificent view of the sunset. The sun that disappears behind the mountains is a breathtaking sight that really leaves you speechless.
Fox Town Outlet Store Mendrisio
If you can travel by car and you want to spend even half a day in one of the most important shopping centers in the region, then go to the Fox Town Store. Located in Mendrisio, just 15 km from Lugano and 50 km from Milan, is now considered a true paradise of luxury and convenience, where there are 160 of the most prestigious brands in the world, for men or women, at outlet prices discounted from 30% to 70% all year round. Among the most renowned brands we can find Armani, Adidas, 1st Class, Versace, Ferragamo, Gucci, Bagatt, Boggi, Saint Laurent, Corneliani Baldinini, Borbonese, Bugatti, Burberry, Calvin Klain, Pinko, Dolce e Gabbana, Nike and many others. The outlet is open every day also on Sundays from 11:00 to 19:00, has 1200 parking spaces, a casino and more than seven refreshment points between bars and restaurants, where you can taste many Swiss specialties and where you can stop and refresh before continuing with the wild shopping.