Having to spend the night at an airport hotel is never a fun experience. I don’t mind them as much as most people because I’m a certified #AvGeek. But, generally, major hotel chains tend to invest less in these properties, with less than stellar rooms, amenities, and food. On the other hand, outside of the major chains lies an uncertain list of inns and motels, where you never know what you are going to get.
Moxy Milan – A New Concept in Airport Hotel
Thankfully, during our recent trip to Italy we had the opportunity to experience a brand new concept hotel from Marriott called Moxy. We were heading out to India for our #IndiaByMarriott tour, and just needed a place to stay the night before our flight. When we heard about the new Moxy Milan hotel, it seemed a perfect way to start our Marriott themed trip.
With an early flight out of Milan Malpensa staying in Milan isn’t really an option. Milan Malpensa is roughly 50 km from the center of Milan and even though there are fairly reliable bus and train services connecting the two, I’d prefer to stay near the airport and get a couple extra hours of sleep. No matter what, the trip from Milan to the airport takes at least an hour and is something to be considered.
Last October we found ourselves in a similar situation when we flew from Milan to Athens for the TBEX travel bloggers’ conference. With a 6am departure, we booked at the budget hotel brand Ibis. We’ve stayed at Ibis hotels before, with some success. They serve their purpose. At Milan Malpensa, we knew we would get to the airport in the early evening, grab a quick bite, and go to bed. This plan worked out for the most part except, the food was awful and the hotel was boring. Determined not to make this same mistake again, we were excited to test out the Moxy Milan.
After our train ride from Bologna to Milan Malpensa via Milano Centrale, stepping into the Moxy was like stepping into no other airport hotel we’ve ever stayed in. With modern, dare I say “hip” decor, the property presents a welcoming and communal atmosphere. It seems that even jumping on the bed, wearing helmets, is entirely encouraged.
The manager, Luciano, greeted us with a warm welcoming smile and a glass of prosecco. Hearing that this was our first time staying at the Moxy, Luciano explained that this was the latest concept from Marriott and that new properties would be opened across Europe. They’re also planning Moxy properties in the U.S., including New York City, San Francisco, and New Orleans. Luciano’s excitement for the brand was evident. He told us that his shift ended before we arrived, but he wanted to meet us and explain the Moxy concept.
Enjoying the Bar at an Airport Hotel?
Amber and I headed to our room to unload our bags and freshen up. This is the point where we usually make the decision to grab something quick to eat in the hotel then return to our room for the rest of the night. What else can you do at an airport hotel? Having picked up on the fun vibe of the lobby and Luciano’s energy level, though, we grabbed our MacBooks and headed down stairs to catch up on email while enjoying our last Aperol Spritz in Italy.
Throughout the lobby and bar area of the Moxy Milan, there were large, conference room type tables designed to give guests the opportunity to meet other travelers. Throw in a foosball table and a large Instagram interactive screen and you’ve got a fun and innovative place to hang out.
We chose to sit at the bar. Shocking I know. Amber and I had a chance to chat with the friendly Polish bartender about our recent trip through Emilia Romagna. Personality must be high on the qualifications list for the staff at the Moxy. Everyone we encountered greeted us with a smile and an unforced interest in our story. While speaking with Luciano, a staff member came over to have him manage with an issue caused by a cancelled Air India flight. Learning that we were heading to India, the staff member asked us a few questions about our trip and expressed her interest in travelling to India someday.
Taking full advantage of the free WiFi, Amber decided to do a Periscope a tour of the lobby. What is Periscope? Periscope is the latest social media toy we’ve begun to play with where you can broadcast live video and interact with viewers. Amber’s 10 minute tour of the lobby was a big hit prompting many viewers to ask about Moxy Milan, and our Aperol Spritz.
If you know anything about Amber and I, it’s all about food. Our stay at the Moxy was our last night in Italy where we had just completed a 4 day culinary tour in Emilia Romagna. Being stuffed to the brim, it was a welcome relief when we arrived at the Moxy Milan and discovered their self-serve dining option. Not capable of eat any more “typical” Italian dinners, we took mercy on our stomachs and enjoyed a simple salad and sandwich for our last meal in Italy. Calling it a night, we retired back to our room to rest up for the start of our long journey to India.
With our continued love affair of Emilia Romagna, odds are we will be transiting through Milan Malpensa several times in the future. Considering Milan airport is not one of our favorites, it’s comforting to know that the Moxy Milan is there for those early morning flights, whether traveling from Emilia Romagna or areas outside of the city, like Lake Como. With a friendly staff, comfortable rooms and fun environment the Moxy Milan is a great place to spend time when transiting on from Italy. Is it a luxury hotel? No, but it is comfortable, convenient, a good value, and most of all, fun!
We were hosted by the Moxy Milan for our night near the Milan Malpensa airport, but all views are my own. Room start at 80 Euros a night.
Amber Hoffman, food and travel writer behind With Husband In Tow, is a recovering attorney and professional eater, with a passion for finding new Food and Drink Destinations. She lives with her husband, Eric, in Girona, Catalonia, Spain. Together over the last 20 years, they have traveled to over 70 countries. Amber is the author of the Food Traveler’s Guide to Emilia Romagna.