Statement on the Garden, Piazza del Duomo, Milan

As a gesture of respect and gratitude, as Starbucks signals its intent to open in Italy, we have sponsored a three-year garden project in the historic Piazza del Duomo in Milan.

In September 2016, the Comune di Milano (Milanese Council) invited some of the finest Milanese landscape gardeners to submit designs, as part of a competition to revitalise this special green space. Local designer Marco Bay’s spectacular plans were chosen, with a design taking direct inspiration from both contemporary and historic Milanese influences - including the hidden gardens around the city and nineteenth-century exotic flower gardens, featuring palm trees and yucca plants. Palm trees have a special significance for the Piazza – a bronze palm commissioned by Cardinal Carlo Borromeo in the 1600s sits in the crypt of Santo Sepolcro underneath the Duomo square, representing the exact center of Milan as calculated by Leonardo da Vinci at that time.

Since the build of the new garden began in February 2017 we are aware of an incident damaging part of the garden. This is a matter for the local police to investigate and we will continue to support this project. Our intention for this project has always been to demonstrate our respect and gratitude to the city of Milan, which has so greatly inspired Starbucks over the years.