Salone del Mobile.Milano 2023: a new trade-fair experience

Eltrak - Cat banner ad

A renewed layout, a new trade-fair experience, an impactful cultural program, an event that focuses on sustainability… These are just some of the novelties awaiting us at this year’s Salone del Mobile.Milano, accompanied by the return of the biennial Euroluce, the 24th SaloneSatellite and many of the protagonists of design

What’s new at the Salone del Mobile.Milano 2023

Stonetech banner ad
Stonetech banner ad

The 61st edition of the Salone del Mobile.Milano returns to Fiera Milano Rho from 18 to 23 April. A stage of international importance that this year accelerates the important process of transformation of the fair with innovations in the established formulas. Specifically, the Salone del Mobile.Milano 2023 will see three important innovations: it will be laid out on a single exhibition level, with the exhibitors on the upper pavilions (8-12, 16-20) relocated to the lower ones to simplify, improve and enhance the enjoyment and experience of the visit; the new layout of Euroluce which, from being stand-centric, will restore people and enjoyment of the Event to the center, thanks to a more practical smart ring-shaped layout; the cultural component, usually developed in the traditional event in the city, will also be best expressed in the spaces of the biennial Euroluce through interdisciplinary and experiential contents, ranging from architecture to art with exhibitions, talks, workshops and site-specific installations.

Maria Porro, President of the Salone del Mobile.Milano, had this to say: “We worked on giving shape to the suggestions and visions that have emerged over the last few years, based on a couple of simple questions: what is the new role of the Salone? How and where to start redesigning its evolution? We listened to the needs of those who make and experience the Salone, exhibitors and visitors alike, holding more than 2,300 interviews and themed work groups. This fostered the idea for an exhibition on one single level to facilitate the flows and we took an almost “urbanistic” approach to the internal design of the pavilions. Taking our cue from Euroluce, the biennial devoted to the lighting world – which has changed so markedly over the last few years – we redesigned the path, integrating the spaces for companies with interdisciplinary cultural content connected with the relationship between light, architecture, art and science. A metamorphosis likely to interest the Salone as a whole, geared to helping redesign the trade fair model.”

Overall, the 2023 events will bring together 1962 exhibitors, including more than 550 young talents under 35 and 27 design schools. The Salone will create different worlds − the Salone Internazionale del Mobile, the International Furnishing Accessories Exhibition,  Workplace3.0, S.Project, Euroluce, and SaloneSatellite −, will administer the rules – distribution and layout on a single level, aesthetic and cultural paths, experiential spaces and rest and relaxation areas −, suggest calls to action − (take part in) conferences, vertical workshops, (visit) thematic exhibitions, bookshops and (experience) site-specific installations − to allow visitors the possibility of an exciting, subjective, memorable exploration, the only one capable of creating long-term connections (business included).

Euroluce 2023

The April event will mark the return of the biennial Euroluce, (pavilions 9-11 and 13-15), now at its 31st appointment, which will be renewed in the exhibition layout, redesigned by the studio Lombardini22 and, at the same time, increase the visibility of the exhibitors, ensuring they all have an adequate space. “The City of Lights” will be the concept and the unifying theme that will guide the biennial.

The cultural program

The concept “The City of Lights” will also be the main theme from which the cultural program draws its inspiration, this year presented in the spaces of Euroluce: from the interdisciplinary contents curated by Beppe Finessi, to the large piazza and arena of the biennial designed by FormafantasmaAurore, for immersive and reflective experiences – but also a venue for various talks. The studio also designed twelve Constellations, architectural interludes that will host exhibitions within the exhibition curated by Finessi.

The new program of Talks, curated by Annalisa Rosso, with a particular focus on lighting, technology and sustainability, will enrich the event with conversations and debates held by the brightest voices on the contemporary design scene. Shigeru Ban, Kjetil Trædal Thorsen and Marius Myking of Snøhetta, Nao Tamura and Andrea D’Antrassi of MAD, will be questioned by international journalists on how innovation in lighting will improve our lives tomorrow. 

Another cultural nerve center will be the library specializing in design, art and illustration, to which are added literature books, exploring the theme of light in various forms. The space will be curated by Corraini Editori to a project by the studio Formafantasma. In the Euroluce pavilions there will also be a bistro and a fine dining restaurant, designed by Piero Lissoni in harmonious concord with the concept of the space of the biennale.

The SaloneSatellite

There will be over 550 protagonists at the 24th SaloneSatellite, which will find its new but natural location inside the Euroluce pavilions (pav. 13-15). This year’s theme will be “Design Schools – Universities / BUILDING THE (IM)POSSIBLE. ProcessProgress, Practice”. Don’t miss the SaloneSatellite Award, in its 12th edition. The great and eagerly awaited guest at the event dedicated to the under 35s will be Gaetano Pesce, invited to tell us about the main steps in his long career and his interdisciplinary contribution to the world of design.

The commitment to a sustainable Salone del Mobile.Milano 2023

Environmental, economic and social responsibility will also be a priority at the 2023 edition of the Salone del Mobile.Milano, which has just received ISO 20121 certification for the sustainable organization of events. In quest’ottica, il Salone si preoccupa dell’impatto che può avere costruire spazi temporanei. With this in mind, for the biennial Euroluce, the Salone, with Formafantasma and Lombardini22, has envisioned modular structures to ensure that this exhibition design will have continuity, if not within the fair, then in other places, as already happened for Design with Nature by Mario Cucinella.

In addition, this year the Fair has already begun the procedures to identify suppliers of recycled, recyclable or reusable materials for the construction of the communal parts. We will work to regenerate the resources consumed and absorb the waste produced. In this respect, the guidelines for sustainable installations proposed last year to exhibiting companies have also been expanded.

As evidence of the commitment and importance of an ever closer integration of sustainability with strategic choices, since 2022 the Salone del Mobile.Milano has joined the United Nations Global Compact, the world’s largest initiative for business sustainability.

“The Salone del Mobile.Milano’s ability to experiment, innovate and interpret changes reflects a dynamism and willingness to do increasingly more and better for the wood-furnishing companies that have seen Italian design become the design par excellence at global level. The 61st edition, along with the biennial Euroluce exhibition, will unleash the energy that our companies, large and small, harnessed to bring the supply chain to a production turnover of almost 57 billion euros in 2022, up 12.7% compared to 2021 (FederlegnoArredo Study Centre Preliminary Data), accounting for a 11.1% rise in the Furnishing Macrosystem, a 14.3% rise in the Wood Macrosystem and a 15% rise in the timber trade.” said Claudio Feltrin, President of FederlegnoArredo.

Inclusion, the link with the city of Milan and digital

As proof of its potential for inclusion, service and training that the Salone del Mobile.Milano has always had and confirming its international role, the Welcome Project will be renewed for the eighth year, the result of collaboration with the Municipality of MilanFondazione Fiera and the city’s leading design schools and, for the third consecutive year, in collaboration with the Teatro alla Scala Foundation.

One of the keys to the upcoming edition will be a perfect combination of digital and real, which will serve to exponentially enhance the experiences, the narrations and the content on a daily basis. This means the digital platform will become much busier before, during and after the event, not least thanks to our collaboration with the national and international sectoral press and with YesMilano, the city of Milan’s official promotion agency. New editorial and service projects will be activated on the different touch points – website, newsletter, app, and social networks. These will include Unboxing, a format dedicated to previews of products from the exhibiting companies and White Paper, a series of in-depth articles by leading international journalists, but also a new series of podcasts will narrate the protagonists of the event and all the latest product-wise.

The official Salone del Mobile.Milano app will be updated with new functions and services, including augmented reality and wayfinding. Once again, it will be possible to purchase tickets, access details of the products on exhibit and scan the relative QR Codes to find out all the technical details. Sectoral professionals will be able to make appointments with the companies in order to meet the interlocutors that interest them in person, while it matchmaking will make it easier for the brands to make contact with visitors to their stands. In terms of results, 80 million social network accounts were accessed, while the digital platform racked up 14 million views over the last year.

The institutional partnership between Intesa Sanpaolo and the Salone which began in 2017 continues, as well as thepartnership with Radio Deejay, Radio Capital and Radio m2o, providing the soundtrack – amongst other things – to the 61st edition of the Salone del Mobile, Milano