Milan is a city in Italy and the capital of the region of Lombardy and of the province of Milan. The city proper has a population of about 1,320,000, while its urban area, roughly coinciding with its administrative province and the bordering Province of Monza and Brianza (created in 2004 splitting the eastern part from the province of Milan itself), is one of Europe's largest with an estimated population of 4 million spread over 1,980 km2, with a consequent population density of more than 2,000 inhab./km2. The growth of many suburbs and satellite settlements around the city proper following the great economic boom of the 1950-60s and massive commuting flows suggest that socioeconomic linkages have expanded well beyond the boundaries of the city proper and its agglomeration, creating a metropolitan area of 7.4 million population expanded all over the central section of Lombardy region. It has been suggested that the Milan metropolitan area is part of the so-called Blue Banana, the area of Europe with the highest population and industrial density.
Milan is recognized as a world fashion] and design capital, with a major influence in commerce, industry, music, sport, literature, art and media; it has thus been ranked by GaWC as an Alpha+ world city in 2008.] The Lombard metropolis is especially famous for its fashion houses and shops (such as along Via Monte Napoleone) and the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele in the Piazza Duomo (reputed to be the world's oldest shopping mall). The city has an ancient cultural heritage and legacy, vibrant nightlife and is home to numerous famous dishes, such as risotto alla Milanese.. Milan is also well-known for containing several important museums, universities, academies, palaces, churches and libraries (such as the Academy of Brera and the Castello Sforzesco) and two renowned football teams: A.C. Milan and F.C. Internazionale Milano. Euromonitor International ranked Milan as the world's 63rd most visited city in 2009, with 1.894 million arrivals. The city hosted the 1906 World Exposition and will host the 2015 Universal Exposition.