Design places to visit in Europe

Hi all,

I’m travelling around Europe for the next few months, and I’d like to stop at a few design based places along the way.

I’m heading to London Design Museum today, but does anyone else have other recommendations in Western Europe?

That’s a good start. Personally, I like the London Transport Museum, the Deutsches Museum in Munich, and whilst not strictly design, I like the Museum of Contemporary Art in Barcelona.

Hopefully you enjoy those as much as me!

I would check out a lot of the more historic sights actually and maybe focus more on art and architecture than design in Western Europe.
Such as spots around France or northern Italy.

For design specific destinations, swing by Switzerland and check out the Vitra Museum near Basel and maybe some of the watchmakers here.

What’s your itinerary like? It’s easier to give some more specific suggestions then. Wester Europe is still a pretty big place :wink:

If you are already in London, check out Kew Gardens, walk around Shoreditch, walk Bermondsey Road (there are a couple of good coffee shops there like Fuck Coffee, as well as the Rope Walk street food area) in Southwark and see the White Cube Gallery while you are over there as well as The Shard, and the Tate Modern.

There are so many cool studios and designer around that area and others near by. Jasper Morrison, BarberOsgerby, Tej Chauhan etc.
You can always find somebody from those places on Linkedin and see if they are down for a pint after work :wink:
I have done that in NYC and other places and it’s a great way to get some local tips and insights.

I certainly have a soft spot for Milan. I’d consider it the capital of design in Europe (others would disagree). If you can, find a company where you have interest and see if you can get a tour. I was fortunate to get a tour of Columbus/Cinelli. A marvelous culture of art/design/manufacturing.

Cinelli 011 by iabisdb, on Flickr

Cinelli 014 by iabisdb, on Flickr

Their R&D studio

Cinelli 029 by iabisdb, on Flickr

Me sitting at Sig. Colombo’s desk

Cinelli 055 by iabisdb, on Flickr

Lisbon - surprisingly vibrant little design scene, and a lot of modern glass/ceramics.
Bilbao - go for the titanium Gehry and the Calatrava bridge.
Heck I would just do a Spanish tour of major Calatrava works.

Thanks for the tips everyone! I’m keen to check out the suggestions :slight_smile:

Great idea to try to catch up with local designers!

I don’t really have a planned itinerary, I’m just checking out places as I go. I often find a lot of the best things to see in a region come from others who have been before.