The world's premier design and furniture show opens April 14th in Milan. The main action takes place at the convention center outside the city, in the suburb of Rho, but don't neglect the cool stuff to do back in town. Here's a preview of where to go, what to buy and the best way to refuel.
1. Bottega Veneta
The Italian luxury goods house is plotting a major push at this year's Salone. In addition to introducing the latest home collection, creative director Tomas Maier will fete the opening of a pop-up shop at the company's headquarters on Via Privata Ercole Marelli. On sale, will be special edition bags, like this buckled duffle along with cutting-edge design products usually only on sale in Japan. bottegaveneta.com
Clockwise from top left: Edo Kiriko Glass by Yasunori Kimura for the Taburo Corporation, Shippo Kiriko Glass by Glass, Forest Akita cedar wood pitcher by Yasutaka Shimizu, Hakone Yosegi Zaiku Box by Katsuhiro Kanazashi, Wine opener by Mistsunobu Ogino of Hyakunen-Monogatari.
2. Giorgio Armani
In 2000, Giorgio Armani launched his signature Casa line, producing everything from sleek sofas to high-tech kitchens, and the designer hasn't looked back since. Now he's collaborating with Roca on a new bathroom concept and opening the doors to a new Casa store on Via Sant'Andrea. Armani is known as Il Maestro&8212;and this space is certainly his temple. giorgioarmani.com
3. Swarovski Crystal Palace
A Salone favorite, Swarovski has once again commissioned big names to curate installations for its Crystal Palace on Via Tortona. You'll find works by Yves Béhar, Vincent Van Duysen, Rogier van der Heide and Tokujin Yoshioka, whose LED-lit globe has been "grown" in an aquarium. www.swarovskicrystalpalace.com
You can always count on Moschino for a heaping dose of wit and whimsy. The Italian house teamed up with Kartell and reinterpreted its iconic Mademoiselle chair by Philippe Starck with one version that shines in gold brocade and another covered in dozens of satin bows. Want one? Each model can be purchased at Moschino's new hotel on Viale Monte Grappa. moschino.com
The company may be best known for its quilted outerwear, but Moncler is flexing some design muscle. They commissioned Japanese artist Kiang Jing to create an exclusive sculpture for its Milan boutique. The ceramic piece called "Toy", has also been replicated on a limited edition series of graphic T-shirts. moncler.com