View looking up at architecture of Piazzina Liberty with graphic stating "Take "Note" of this Milano Gem"

This Milano gem that is duly “Noted” for its beauty


Dry and crispy out front, but still a cool building.

Imagine this. It’s a balmy summer afternoon but the dogs are bouncing off the apartment walls. What does that mean? Park. Time.

We go to the enclosed park that’s shaded by a canopy of “why would you plant a dog park under these spiky-balls-of-death-generating chestnut trees?!?!”

As Mucca and Nola are revving up their zoomies engines, I hear a crescendo of music building in the distance. After a moment of feeling like I’m in a cat(ahoula) and mouse chase cartoon, I realize the background melody is drifting from the open windows of Piazzina Liberty.

Just Park it here

Our park, Parco Formentano is like a grassy-knoll meets woods, smack-dab in the city center of Milan. And smack in the middle of the park is a very charming art nouveau building that’s home to the Milano Chamber Orchestra.

Let me tell you, nothing says summer like chasing after your dog yelling “Cow! (Remember, we named our dog Mucca = cow in Italiano) What’s in your mouth?!!” to that one part in Beethoven’s 5th where things get a little rowdy.

If only I had a St. Bernard….AM I RIGHT GUYS?!!

Mucca in a super cute yellow raincoat on the steps of the building with blue doors behind him.
Mucca lookin like he owns the joint, or at least like he wants to chew on the little wand-y thing the conductor has.

Ok 90’s dog movie jokes aside, this place is gorgeous. It’s one of those not-so-hidden gems that when I pass every morning I can’t help but think “yep. I live in Italy.” And having random soundtrack-to-my-life moments when I happen to catch them rehearsing with the windows open, makes it all the better.

What is this place?

According to Wikipedia, it was built 1908 in the center of the Verziere market where they sold fruit and veggies. It was originally used as a café and restaurant where patrons and merchants alike would gather to spread the town gossip, probably over teensie cups of jet-fueled espresso.

Mucca lookin fly on the steps of the building, before there was graffiti tags all over the wall.
Mucca lookin fly on the steps. Pre-graffiti trash.

Once the market relocated, it was left neglected for some time until the 1970s, when it got turned into a theater. Then in the 80’s it became the main spot for the Civic Band of Milan.

Since the mid-90’s it’s been home to the Classic Chamber Orchestra of Milan. Finally in 2017, they officially made the full name “Piazzina Liberty Dario Fo e Franca Rame” for the famous protagonists who started that theater in the 70s.

The front of the building today with a bunch of shitty tags on it. For shame.
When some jerk goes and ruins this beautiful building for everyone. Where Mucca was sitting in the above photo.
The Music

In the Before Times (pre-covid), they used to have all sorts of concerts both indoors and out in the piazza, for locals. Today, it looks like they’re still regularly holding events, but not so much outside as spontaneous combustion probably isn’t good for repeat business.

Have I gone to one of these events yet. No. Why would I when I get all the free practice listens I can handle while chasing my pups back and forth over a woodsy floor covered in ankle-piercing chestnut spikes?!

Just kidding! I do have it on my list to see a proper show. Because it looks just as gorgeous inside and I’d love to see it.

Classic Photo Backdrop

But when I’m not mooching free culture from Piazzina Liberty, I love photographing my dogs around there.

Nola looking hood AF laying down on the ledge of the building surrounded by graffiti.
Nola lookin hood AF. She had nothing to do with the de-facing of this beautiful architecture though.

Unfortunately, some scumbag decided to write the file name of their favorite Quicktime format all over the back (front?) of it. But with some Photoshop magic, until they do some paint magic, the structure is still lovely.

I’ll admit, some of the ground floor entrances on the side, that are super-scumbag tagged, make for a pretty cool urban backdrop for pups.

I’m always reminding myself how nice it is to have such a big park at our dew-nail tips, and I appreciate the other “notes” of beauty in the park as well.

This is also one of the best ways to burn some energy before a photo session at Apawture Studios. I always recommend a slightly tired and hungry pup before sessions and this is a great way to play. Maybe you can catch your own rehearsal session!

Mucca looking at the camera in the purple bushes with one branch in front of his neck. He looks serious.
Mucca lurking in some nearby bushes. This park has everything!

Have your own maestro at home ready for center stage?

Open the curtains


This post is part of a blog circle of some of the most uber-talented pet photographers all over the world. Keep reading to hear about more special spots in cities all around the world.

Up next: Dog photographer, Courtney Bryson, takes you back to school on this Maltese’s sunrise session on the Georgia Tech campus in downtown Atlanta, GA.

Follow the circle until you land back on this page. Enjoy!

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  1. Jan

    What a gorgeous building! I want to visit Milan!

    • THE Carol Mudra

      You’re welcome any time! I have two slobbery pups that would love to meet you!! 😉

  2. Terri

    What a beautiful building. Such a pity that there are people who would want to ruin it!

    • THE Carol Mudra

      I know! They do go through rounds of painting it, but c’mon people. Your ugly scribbles aren’t worth it!!

  3. Tracy Allard

    What a fantastic location! Milan is one of my favorite cities in the world. I love “low cities” (my own personal term), cities that have more neighborhoods and less high rises. Cities that people actually LIVE in like Melbourne, Australia, San Francisco and Amsterdam. This building is gorgeous (and GRRRR on the graffiti), you’re so lucky to have it at your fingertips. So much history and texture.

    • THE Carol Mudra

      They made a law that any new buildings within the city limits can’t be taller than the Madonnina statue on top of the Duomo. However, some sky scrapers have been built just outside that circle, but to stay true to tradition, they all have a mini version of the Madonnina on top so she’s still the tallest point. I have to laugh at their ways of bending the rules! But it is a lovely city. Now if only we’d get some rain and cool off some so I can go outside and explore more!

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