Fashion design spotting + shopping in Copenhagen. Photo credit: VisitDenmark.
Leah Prendergast wrote this guest post on the best city shopping destinations.
Shopping abroad is the ultimate city adventure.
The historic Silk Road trade routes linked the capitals of the West with the fabulous shopping destinations of the East.
Today, silk, perfumes and ivory have been replaced by designer clothes, electronics and trendy jewellery, but the spirit that moved those Silk Road merchants is alive and well.
More women travel these days than ever before, with their significant others, with groups of friends, or even by themselves.
Shopping excursions to faraway places are a blast, combining all the best aspects of museum hopping, people watching, and good, old-fashioned retail therapy.
The cities below are some of the world’s best shopping destinations:
Scandinavian design is legendary in furniture, accessories and fashion, and Copenhagen is the go-to metropolis if you have a home or closet you need to furnish in a hurry. Illums Bolighus, Copenhagen’s exclusive interior design emporium, has been a centre of sophisticated decor for over a century. In Copenhagen, you’ll also find all the best names in china and silverware, including Royal Copenhagen, Georg Jensen and Holmegaard, all within a few steps of each other on Amagertorv Street.
Hong Kong. Photo credit: Hong Kong Tourism Board.
For centuries, Hong Kong has been the West’s gateway to the treasures of China. Shopping has only gotten better since China’s become an increasingly important player in the world economy. In Hong Kong, street markets vie with some of the world’s most luxurious malls. Don’t miss out on Yau Ma Tai’s Jade market where 500 stalls peddle the precious green gemstone that symbolizes long life and good fortune.
Istanbul. Photo credit: Property Frontiers.
East meets West in Istanbul, literally as well as figuratively. The Bosporus Strait is the border between Europe and Asia. You’ll discover merchandise representing both cultures here, from top label brands and the latest fashions to antique carpets and vintage Berber jewellery. Istinye Park is possibly the most impressive of Istanbul’s 100 malls, featuring a small park, a kiddie entertainment centre, a sports club and a dozen cineplexes.
Argentina’s free-spirited gaucho culture finds its retail reflection in a wealth of luxury leather goods at very inexpensive prices. There’s no better place to check out Argentine designers’ creations than the Buenos Aires Design Mall. The Calle Florida and Calle Lavalle in the downtown Microcentro neighbourhood are home to boutiques and upscale chain stores. More exclusive shopping opportunities are to be found in the Recoleta district where artisans like Prada, Chanel, and Armani maintain lavish storefronts.
Grand Central Terminal in New York City. Photo: (C) Metropolitan Transportation Authority.
From the high-priced salons that line Fifth Avenue to the boho chic of SoHo and NoLita boutiques to the elegance of mega-department stores like Bloomingdale’s and Bergdorf Goodman’s to the cut-rate Canal Street vendors, if it’s not for sale in New York City, chances are you won’t find it anywhere. There are many cheap New York Hotels where you may take up temporary residence and spend most of your travel budget on clothes and gadgets. The Big Apple is truly the retail Mecca for clothes but it’s not bad for electronics either. Small stores lining the lower avenues are excellent places to score affordable computers and digital tablets if you’re not afraid to hold out for a bargain.
This post was brought to you, in partnership with HostelBookers.com, a travel booking company providing cheap accommodation worldwide.