Review: Hilton Milan

Old, tired rooms and a forgettable lounge spread mean the Hilton Milan's main perk is its location.

After arriving in Geneva, I headed straight to the airport ibis to catch some sleep and wait for the morning train to Milan. My plan was to get in as early as possible, so I’d have more time to feast.

I only had one night in Milan before I headed back to Singapore, and it was just my luck that I was visiting during Milan Fashion Week. Hotel rates were through the roof, but fortunately I could redeem the Hilton Milan at 70,000 points. 

Having stayed there, I now think that’s way too many points, at least under regular circumstances.

🏨 tl;dr: Hilton Milan
Old, tired rooms and a forgettable lounge spread mean the Hilton Milan’s main perk is its location.
👍 The Good👎 The Bad
  • Convenient location just next to Milano Centrale
  • Public areas have been renovated
  • Rooms are well overdue for renovation
  • Underwhelming executive lounge spread that’s not worth disrupting your dinner plans
  • No facilities beyond a gym
💦🚿 Golden Showers

Hilton Milan: Arrival & Check-in

Hilton Milan driveway

The Hilton Milan is conveniently located near Milano Centrale station, less than a four-minute walk away. You can catch the Malpensa Express to MXP from there (every 30 mins), or board one of the many buses making up the Malpensa Shuttle service (every 20 mins). 

Next to the hotel is an Aldi supermarket as well as a Europcar branch, and the Duomo is a 35-minute stroll away, or 9 minutes by public transport.

Hilton Milan entrance

This property is old. Really old. First opened in 1968, the 320-room hotel has been a landmark in the central business district for decades. While they did renovate the lobby, lounge bar and restaurant in 2016, the rooms (at least some of them) have unfortunately not received the same degree of love, as you’ll soon see.

Hilton Milan lobby
Hilton Milan lobby

My room wasn’t ready yet when I arrived at 10 a.m, but the concierge helped store my bags and I went next door to pig out at Mercato Centrale. It’s an absolute must-visit for anyone who loves eating but doesn’t want to commit to a single restaurant.

Check-in desks

Hilton Milan: Suite

When I returned to the front desk at 3 p.m, I was informed that my room had been upgraded to a King Junior suite. That’s a nice upgrade, and a welcome change from having to argue for one.

The room, however, has seen better days. It’s got that early 2000s wood and beige thing going on, and I can’t say I was won over by the décor. 

Hilton Milan King Junior Suite

Since this was a junior suite, there was no separation between living and bedroom area. Instead, the living area was located at the far end of the room, with a direct line of sight to the bed. 

Hilton Milan King Junior Suite
Hilton Milan King Junior Suite
Hilton Milan King Junior Suite

The living area had a couch, two chairs and an oval-shaped table. The television, however, was tiny. I didn’t come all the way to Italy to watch TV, but it astounds me how they thought this could possibly be adequate.

Living area

The work desk had a comfortable office chair, and while the room might be ancient, at least the Wi-Fi network was modern. I clocked 93 Mbps up and down, an excellent connectivity speed. 

Work desk

The mini-bar had Twinnings teabags and Nescafé Gold sachets, which I thought would be blasphemy given Milan’s coffee culture. I’m not sure how they got away without offering so much as a Nespresso machine, but well.

Mini-bar

Inside the mini-bar were two complimentary bottles of mineral water. Milan’s tap water is perfectly safe to drink (and if you have lounge access, there’s a free flow of Acqua Panna waiting upstairs!).

Mineral water

Inside the wardrobe was a safe, ironing board, together with a pair of bathrobes. 

Wardrobe

The bed had the standard Hilton Serenity mattress, custom made by Serta. It was comfortable enough, even if the sheets weren’t quite as high thread count as I was hoping for. A bigger disappointment were the bedside tables, which lacked any charging outlets, much less USB ports.

Bed
Bedside table
Bedside table

The bathroom was surprisingly cramped for a suite, no bigger than what you’d expect in a standard room. It had the combination shower/tub that I’m no fan of (I’d much rather have a less-restricted shower area with no tub), plus the usual stand-alone bidet that’s common throughout Europe. 

Bathroom

Given the toilet was so small, the vanity area had close to zero space for personal items.

Vanity area
Toilets and bidet

Hilton continues to offer Crabtree and Evelyn toiletries from the Verbena & Lavender range. 

Crabtree & Evelyn toiletries

Hilton Milan: Club lounge

Hilton Milan Executive Lounge

As a Hilton Diamond member, I had access to the Hilton Milan’s club lounge, located on the 8th floor. The lounge opens from 10 a.m to 9 p.m daily, and seats about 40 guests.

Hilton Milan Executive Lounge
Hilton Milan Executive Lounge

There’s also an outdoor area with high tables and heat lamps, for those who want a more al fresco vibe. 

Hilton Milan Executive Lounge

All-day light refreshments were available, basically fruit, nuts, chips, tea and soft drinks. I did so enjoy chugging down Aqua Panna, given how expensive it is in Singapore. 

Fruits
Nuts
Coffee and tea
Drinks

Evening cocktail hours are 6-8 p.m daily. 

Evening cocktail spread

Frankly speaking, I didn’t think any of the items were worth rearranging your dinner plans for. There were just two hot items — neither of which looked particularly appealing— and an assortment of cold salads, cheese and fruits. 

Hot item
Hot item
Cheese
Salad
Salad
Salad

The wine selections were also disappointing, given where we were:

Wine selection

Surprisingly, there were no reds on display. I mean, I’m not asking for Super Tuscans or anything, but at least something that warrants a DOCG label…

Hilton Milan: Breakfast

Pacific Milano

Breakfast is served at Pacific Milano restaurant from 6.30 a.m to 10 a.m on weekdays, and 6.30 a.m to 11 a.m on weekends. It’s complimentary for Gold and Diamond members, otherwise you’ll pay €35 per person. Yes, it’s not cheap. 

I had a train to catch at 6.55 a.m, so I couldn’t hang around for too long, but managed to browse the selection quickly. 

Buffet
Buffet

The cold area had fruits, cheese, cold cuts, pastries and various breads. 

Fruits
Cheeese
Cold cuts
Breads
Pastries
Honeycomb
Cereals

I particularly loved the fresh juice machine, which squeezed oranges to order- just pull the handle. And of course, enough Aqua Panna or San Pellegrino to fill a bathtub.

Fresh juice

Over in the hot area was an egg station, as well as the usual breakfast staples like bacon, sausages, mushrooms, tomatoes and baked beans. 

Egg station
Hash browns and hard boiled eggs
Scrambled eggs
Bacon
Sausages
Mushrooms
Tomatoes
Baked beans

There was also an obligatory Asian item, served as part of the Hilton Huanying programme catered to Chinese guests (because God forbid you’d visit a foreign country and actually want to try their food!). It looked…less than ideal.

Noodle dish

Facilities

I didn’t have time to check out the gym, but you can check out some photos here.

The facility is located in the basement, and looks rather basic, with capacity for 12 guests at at a time.

Conclusion

The Hilton Milan has an excellent location, but for 70,000 points a night is way too expensive to be appealing. As much as I appreciated the suite upgrade, the rooms are showing their age, and the executive lounge spread is certainly not worth spoiling your dinner for.

For what it’s worth, I understand the rooms are due for a refurbishment so maybe things will get better. 

Aaron Wong
Aaron Wong
Aaron founded The Milelion to help people travel better for less and impress chiobu. He was 50% successful.

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STA

Well, there are many independent hotels you could have stayed at for less than half the price. That is what we get for being obsessed with staying in chain hotels.

Mark

My first “rule” for any hotel booking – AVOID chain hotels. They are way over-priced and mostly boring ordinary hotels. The real gems can be found looking for small local type properties.

Mr. George

I gotta say, I don’t agree. Chain hotels might not be “extraordinary,” but they usually give you a “predictable” experience. That’s pretty important, especially for families with little kids who might need extra help or services from the hotel.
Sure, chain hotels can be a bit pricier, but you get a more consistent experience overall.
In my experience, I haven’t run into any awful situations at chain hotels, but I have at some smaller ones.
If chain hotels were really that bad, they wouldn’t be as successful as they are now.

Daniel

I stayed nearby, INNSiDE by Meliá Milano Torre GalFa. Wonderful hotel.

Rondo

Nescafe gold is actually very very decent for instant coffee.

Billy

Sigh… I was looking forward to my 5 nights stay there in May…
I am having 2nd thoughts after reading this review…
Points redemption was a bit ridiculous but I think its still a good rate compared to now.

Leo

I have seen worse Hilton. Prague and park lane are in worse conditions

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