By Valerie Waterhouse
October 14, 2014

This enclave north of Milan’s historic center has always been known as a cultural hub. Now it’s home to luxury purveyors and creative upstarts alike.

Looking for old-world glamour? Stay at the new Palazzo Parigi, the reconstruction of a gilded, 17th-century mansion. Our favorite detail: private terraces for all 98 rooms. 1 Corso di Porta Nuova.

On boutique-lined Via Solferino, edgy restaurant Pisacco does double duty as a contemporary art space. The menu skews traditional (think vitello tonnato), but the graffiti-inspired murals are anything but. 48 Via Solferino.

Zaini has sold artisanal chocolates in Milan since 1913; this first outpost of their Corso Como flagship holds a timeless appeal for a crowd of aspiring models and sweet-toothed nostalgists. Try the cremini, with layers of hazelnut cream. 5 Via Carlo de Cristoforis.

A protégé of local toque Gualtiero Marchesi, Daniel Canzian is earning raves at Daniel, where 10 chefs serve classics with a twist from an open kitchen. The dish to order: lemon-and-licorice risotto. 7 Via Castelfidardo.

Follow the city’s style hounds from the Brooks Brothers and Gucci stores on Via Brera to Antonia, an expansive concept store filled with of-the-moment finds (neon yellow Manolos; snake-print blousons by up-and-comer Marcelo Burlon). 5 Via Cusani.

At the pocket-size Place Minuit, former event planner Lucia Mezzanotte makes custom-tailored cocktail dresses inspired by her nonna, a 1950’s society belle. 127 Corso Garibaldi.

Valerie Waterhouse is Travel + Leisure's Italy correspondent.