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JJ Martin
Founder of Ladoublej


A colour that represents Milan the best?
I don’t see Milan in colors. It’s not a very colorful city. Personally I wish there were more and better parks so that it would be greener!

Which cultural figures have influenced Milan the most (past or present)?
Gio Ponti, Piero Portaluppi, Miuccia Prada, Giorgio Armani, Maurizio Cattelan.

Which buildings or pieces of architecture, apart from il Duomo, represent Milan the best?
The Galleria Vittorio Emanuele especially now that it’s been renovated. The Torre Velasca which I’m lucky enough to see from our home terrace.

Some must see design locations around the city?
Dimore Studio, Six Gallery, Nilufar Gallery, Moshe Tabibnia for rare carpets.

Where to relax and unwind in the city?
I like Hohm Street Yoga, Mondo yoga and City Zen for yoga, meditation and retreats. If there were better parks, I’d jog more!!!

Your favourite shopping spots (for clothes but also books or flowers or jewels etc….)?
I like the small crystal shop in Via Santa Marta for crystals which I buy often. My flowers are done by a fabulous Japanese woman called Sachiko Ito. I love the objects at L’oro dei Farlocchi. Then of course I always find things to buy for friends and host gifts at our La DoubleJ showroom in Piazza Arcole 4 which is open by private appointment.

Your favourite place to stop for a coffee and pasticcino?
I love the new Cracco in the Galleria and Marchesi in Via Montenapoleone because they both feel grand and do things traditionally. I love Milanese bars because you always end up making friends with the staff and it becomes very cozy and familiar.

Favourite restaurant(s)?
I love having lunch outside at Il Salumaio di Montenapoleone in Via Santo Spirito and I’m also a sucker for old school traditional places like Bice which has a great vibe.

A spot for a drink in the night?
The Botanical Club has great gin distilled on site and Bar Basso is always good with old school Milanese friends. The owner Maurizio is the cutest.

Where to go to see and be seen?
To be honest, I spent 15 years seeing and being seen in Milan as a fashion and design journalist and now I just want to get rooted in my own space at home. So I’m not the person to ask! But art openings at the Prada Foundation or the design week opening at Nilufar Depot are still always fun.

Your perfect day in Milan?
I like to start with yoga and meditation on my terrace. Then I go to Cucchi with my husband where we like to sit and read for hours. Afterwards I do a Thai massage, and then I do shopping at a local fruttivendolo which I love doing. I like to cook in the afternoons and then have people over to our house for an elaborate aperitivo or dinner.

Your favourite secret spot in the city?
I love empty churches with soaring painted ceilings but only when there are no people and no priests. My two favorites are la cappella behind La Basilica of Sant’Eustorgio and San Maurizio al Monastero Maggiore. I go into churches all the time to meditate or write.

Why do you live in Milan?
I came for love and I stayed for my job. Now it’s both my company LaDoublej.com and my husband that keep me here.