Santeria Paladini 8 (the name has changed from the original “la Santeria” since a second location was opened, La Santeria Social Club) is hidden in the inside court of an anonymous street of Milan suburbs. You hardly notice it when you pass by, I personally discovered it by chance as I heard some music coming out and saw lots of people going down what seemed to be a garage path. When I ventured inside, I discovered a lovely courtyard covered with a wooden floor and decorated with a climbing path.
This place is great in the summer for the aperitivo: there are often DJ performances, the atmosphere is lively and easygoing and there are lots of people in their 20-30s that seem to be coming out of a creative agency. It’s not just an impression: on the first floor there is a job-sharing area where designers, web and graphic artists, freelancers rent a desk for some hours, days, weeks or even longer to carry out their projects.
During the day la Santeria is the ideal place to go to when you just want to relax: it has plenty of newspapers, it’s quiet, the staff is really friendly and the food is delicious (although waiters are not particularly quick).
For the night I prefer the Santeria Social Club, that closes at 3 am and hosts concerts and drama performances. The location is quite interesting: a 1000 sqm former car dealer building, abandoned and then renovated to be transformed in a cultural center.