This B&B-cum-Vietnamese diner was five years in the making, which is not that long for Italy, including Milan’s hotels. Based on an authentic Hanoi commune (similar to an Italian locanda with garden and restaurant on one level, plus a handful of rooms above) this peaceful spot in a posh suburb of Chinatown took two years to source alone. In the meantime, owner Dario chucked his job in pharmaceuticals to join his Paris-born Vietnamese wife Christiane – a Sorbonne-educated ex-fashion editor – on a research mission back to the motherland. A four-room floor of colour-richyet tranquil spaces is the result. Smears of paint and exposed brick meld with low beds, tropical wood floors and bamboo bedside tables to give a resolutely chilled urban-colonial feel. Flatscreen TVs and flowery shower rooms come as standard, as does air con for when Milan reels from East Asian style summer humidity. The two back rooms have teeny balconies over the garden, although the owners make no bones about hanging up your drying bed linen in public. Barring Sundays, all and sundry can dig into delicate North Vietnamese cuisine from skewered shrimp in sugar cane sauce to soft nem ran banana and pork rolls.