The Evolution of Hospitality at Host

Hospitality has always been based on the five senses. The sight, stimulated by lights, colours, and screens; an acoustic carpet suitable for the type of location and experience you want to create; the touch, stimulated by the textures of the materials that merge with the smell and taste of the dishes and drinks. The combinations of all these elements are endless and depend on personal taste and the spirit of the place. Today, offering one product alone, even if of quality, is no longer enough. Everything is evolving: the customers’ tastes and habits change swiftly. How does one remain up-to-date?

From October 20 to 24, 2017, Host will showcase all the latest trends in Milan. The world-leading trade fair for Ho.Re.Ca., foodservice, retail, food, mass market distribution, and hotel facilities has reached its 40th edition. Every two years, this event provides the opportunity to showcase whatever a successful bar or restaurant needs, from raw materials to semi-finished products, from machinery to equipment, from furnishing to tableware. Come to Host to find out more about the future trends.

This important international event will attract at least 1,437 companies (41 per cent from 48 countries). So far, 500 international exhibitors have confirmed their presence. In the next few months, we are expecting to occupy the last spaces available, focusing on the target areas of this edition: Canada, USA, and the Middle East. They will meet over 1,500 hosted buyers, including new participants, and an ever-growing array of products selected in collaboration with ITA – Italian Trade Agency. There are good prospects for a successful edition, with numerous international representatives, exhibitors and visitors, who were more than 150 thousand in 2015.

Exihs’ concept core

Art, culture, and sales merge together. It has always been this way, but maybe today even more. An architect or designer who wants to make the difference needs are more educated approach, capable of grasping that common thread that links the past, rich in incentives and suggestions, with the future in constant evolution. That’s why, this year, Host has moved to the next level, thanks to Exihs (Excellent Italian Hospitality Services) – an area dedicated to the future of luxury hospitality and core of the furniture and tableware area.

The concept space, designed by Davide Rampello, theatre director and former president of the Triennale Foundation and director of Pavilion Zero at Expo 2015 together with Dante O. Benini, leading partner & chairman of the Dante O Studio. Benini & Partners Architects, will be a true artistic-design performance; a project that, for the first time, will go beyond its commercial purpose to enable international visitors at Host to get up close and personal with the authenticity of Italian culture. Given an important topic as that of “L’Italia fatta a mano” (Handmade Italy), visitors will travel through the evolution of humankind and its natural inclination towards hospitality through an evocative use of surfaces and materials. An installation wall will showcase Italian agricultural products. Exihs’ idea and concept was unveiled at HostMilano, and today it keeps on travelling: the project is in fact expected to grace a series of world-class art and architecture events, including the Biennale in Beijing.

Room for innovation

HostMilano will present its vision for the future of the hospitality sector within the halls of the Furniture and Tableware area, which interacts synergistically with the other major areas of HostMilano, such as professional catering with bread, pizza, pasta, as well as the coffee, tea, bars, vending machines, gelato and pastry sectors, where the visitor will be taken on a journey and given the opportunity to explore the creativity of top professionals as well as budding young talents ready to break into the business.

This is possible also thanks to two important initiatives aiming at awarding professionals and products that have accepted the challenge of the future. HOSThinking is a design award organized by, a consortium of the Milan Polytechnic, in collaboration with Host- Fiera Milano under the patronage of ADI (Italian Association for the Industrial Design). At its third edition, this year’s title is “10 designers per 100 products.” This new format will give life to a creative event, which will take place at the trade fair pavilions.

Ten candidates will be selected to join the same number of teams. This year, over 2,000 exhibitors will inspire the projects that will be created “live” from 100 products selected. The aim is to create new hospitality experiences and scenarios (interior design formats for the food, retail, and hotel industry and furnishing, tableware products, etc). The creative activity, which is carried out live, must result in a concept that combines service and experience, products offered and living spaces.

Product innovation also lies at the heart of SmartLabel, the accolade dedicated to innovation within the professional hospitality sector promoted by Host – Fiera Milano, in collaboration with, under the patronage of ADI, which will focus on the “Internet of Things” and on new materials that improve energy savings and recovery. Accolades will be awarded for two categories chosen among products/services/projects that will stand out for their distinctive features: SMART Label for products with distinguishing innovative content in terms of functionality, technology, environmental sustainability, social and ethical implications and Innovation SMART Label for products that break away from and surpass consolidated sector trends.

Milan’s Renaissance

After the success of Expo 2015, Milan has blossomed, becoming an international destination for educated and demanding tourists, and Host has brought its added value to this context. Milan is not just the world capital of design and fashion, but it is also known for its catering and hospitality.

The new districts developed by important international architects are a must-see. Porta Nuova’s “fashion city” in Piazza Gae Aulenti, with the vertical forest designed by Stefano Boeri, awarded with the International Highrise Award promoted by the Frankfurt Museum of Architecture, and City Life, with the “towers” designed by Arata Isozaki, Zaha Hadid and (under construction) Daniel Libeskind. But the ferment also involves new luxury hotels and restaurants. Starting from the restaurant of the two-Michelin star chef, Carlo Cracco, at the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele, a nineteenth-century building developed on five floors, covering a surface of one thousand square metres. Enrico Bartolini, another two-Michelin star chef (they are five in Milan), has recently opened his restaurant at Mudec, the new Museum of Cultures designed by David Chipperfield. The Michelin guide 2017 includes 58 starred restaurants in Lombardy, 17 in Milan and its province. In 2018, Starbucks will make its debut in Italy, precisely in Milan, where they will open the exclusive Starbucks Reserve Roastery of 2,500 sq.m.

The 40th edition of Host will take place at FieraMilano, Rho, from October 20 to 24, 2017.

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