Walking down the street on a bright, sunny day—one of the few there have been this year—you find yourself in front of Bar Italia on 66th and Madison Ave. Double doors open out onto the sidewalk where patrons are enjoying caprese salads, margherita pizzas and risottos of the day, while sipping on an Aperol Spritz or lychee martini. You see diners receiving some complimentary bar snacks, including prosciutto served over slices of melon and arancini di riso served with marinara sauce.
Directly across the street, you peek into the windows of Eleventy, where the latest Italian men’s and women’s fashion collections are on display, and then walk a few blocks down to have a glance at the Italian handcrafted gloves at Sermoneta Gloves.
Do you think you might be in Florence, Milan or Rome? If so, we don’t blame you. But you’re actually a little over 4,000 miles away from Italy … in New York City!
And no, you’re not in lower Manhattan’s Little Italy neighborhood. You’re on the East Side’s very own Madison Avenue, where businesses from down in the Flatiron District all the way up to Carnegie Hill are celebrating “la dolce vita” (Italian for “the sweet life”) with Italy on Madison from May 18-25.
According to Hasan, one of the owners of Bar Italia, Italy on Madison’s aim is to “promote and celebrate the presence of Italian businesses in New York City.” It is an initiative of the Italian Trade Agency, a government entity whose mission is to support the business development of Italian brands abroad and bolster the attraction of foreign investments in Italy.
All week long, Italian businesses along Madison Avenue and the surrounding streets will be offering discounts and deals and complimentary meals—something to certainly be excited about on one of the city’s priciest avenues.
At Marina Rinaldi, for example, shoppers can enjoy 20 percent off on the spring 2022 collection, and new clients can be entered into a raffle to win a $500 gift certificate. On May 21 between 10am and 6pm, shoppers will receive a complimentary MR embroidered beach bag with their purchase, and between 1pm and 4pm, they can enjoy handmade gelato and Italian aperitivi.
A few blocks up the block at Aquazurra, savor in some complimentary Italian cocktails every day and in focaccia farcita prosciutto from 2pm to 5:30pm on May 19, 20, and 21. Feeling hungry? Drop by Serafina Always for discounted cold cuts, cheese and special cocktails.
A complete list of Italy on Madison events can be found here.
Are you ready to revel in Italian design, fashion, and cuisine but not so ready to pay for airfare and hotels? No problem! Walk on over to Madison Avenue and bask in the glory of la dolce vita with Italy on Madison!