Vertical and urban gardening: Hotel Milano Scala

Urban gardening is still in vogue — probably more than ever before! Many cities gradually recognize the importance of green areas, not only for air quality, but also for the mental wellbeing of their citizens. Not without reason,  activities such as the Japanese Shinrin-yoku (“Forest Bathing”) are becoming more and more popular and soon to come, Scottish doctors can prescribe “nature.” The constant absence of nature affects the human beings, especially those living in cities and far away from the soothing effects of plants and animals. So, why not bringing nature to the cities? 

Roof top garden Milano Scala
Gardening on the roof © Hotel Milano Scala

More than a trend

Urban gardening already exists since the 1970s, when New York released the first area for fruit and vegetable cultivation. (More about urban gardening and some innovative vegetable gardens in hotels can be found in our blog). Over time, more concepts unfolded: from community gardens, to vertical gardens, real urban farming projects to bee-friendly flower beds: what used to be a thing for “real granolas” has long become a common trend. Not only, because cities and municipalities often support such projects due to ecological and economic advantages; they not only reduce the city’s carbon footprint and provide better air, but also can lower the prices for locally grown vegetables. On top, the areas become much nicer and worth living to new citizens. 

Vertical garden at the hotel. © Hotel Milano Scala
Vertical garden at the courtyard. © Hotel Milano Scala

Green in more than one way

Urban gardening concepts can also be found at some of our partner hotels. The green façade of the Green City Hotel Vauban in Freiburg, for example, also serves as natural temperature regulation. And on top it is an eye-catcher! A particular example of a sustainable hotel located in the heart of the city is the Hotel Milano Scala in Milan. The hotel is the first zero-emissions hotel in a city that is characterized by busy traffic and bad air. For this purpose, the historic building has been restored and equipped with the latest technologies for electricity production and water saving. A highlight is the former courtyard, now used as a lobby. A glass roof overlooks the green, vertically planted façades of the courtyard.

Herbs growing on the roof. © Hotel Milano Scala
Herbs, vegetables, and fruits grow on the hotel’s roof and are processed in the hotel’s restaurant. © Hotel Milano Scala

As local as possible

The hotel’s restaurant La Traviata pampers you with local and regional dishes. Some of them even come from its own garden! The Hotel Milano Scala grows vegetables and herbs on its roof, from which fresh ingredients for the kitchen and the bar are sourced. Limes for your cocktail, the salad for your appetizer and basil for the homemade pesto grow here. Zero kilometers of transportation are pretty green, aren’t they! Here you have the chance to escape from Milan’s hustle and bustle. At night, you can enjoy the sunset over Milan with a drink on the rooftop terrace in the Sky Lounge and relax and unwind. 

An excursion tip at the end: You can marvel at the first “vertical forest” in Milan: Bosco Verticale are two skyscrapers growing thousands of plants and trees on the balconies making the city a little greener.


Cover picture: © Hotel Milano Scala