“Shopping is a woman thing. It’s a contact sport like football. Women enjoy the scrimmage, the noisy crowds, the danger of being trampled to death, and the ecstasy of the purchase.”
― Erma Bombeck
Italy is a country of incredible beauty, famous for its historic sites, breathtaking landscapes and great cuisine… During the summer the charm of Italy is ever more glowing and tempting. Dear brothers and sisters, today I’m not talking about wonderful sunsets and beautiful beaches past the sea, but rather about the Italian summer shopping!
Personally, I’m deeply convinced (I guess I’ve read it somewhere once) that shopping is somewhat very useful, extremely interesting and highly exciting must-do. Moreover, it’s essential for our psycho-physical well-being as well as an excellent look. Besides, it is really productive for local economy, and hence global. One must also think about the next one, right? Yet, if these reasons won’t suffice, one should remember that in Italy July and August represent the period of summer sales! See, another point in favour of unbridled shopping… Let’s have fun, then!
The Italian “Top Streets” of Fashion and Shopping
In Italy each central avenue or street adjacent to the centre of whatever Italian city is a boulevard of fashion. Yet, let’s name the “Top Streets” of shopping in Italy.
The principal “Top Street” of fashion and shopping in Milan is certainly via Montenapoleone, which is as famous as 5th Avenue in New York, Avenue des Champs-Elysées in Paris and New Bond Street in London. Indeed, according to the “World’s Largest Roads” index ranking the world’s most prestigious shopping streets round the Globe, via Montenapoleone is the fifth most expensive and prestigious street in the world.
Along with via Manzoni, via della Spiga and corso Venezia, Montenapoleone Street forms the so-called Quadrilatero della Moda. Streets inside this high-class shopping district include via Gesù, via Borgospesso, Via Bagutta, Via Sant’Andrea and Via Santo Spirito. This small area is characterised by the presence of numerous boutiques and related retail outlets which represent most of the Italian and international fashion houses, as well as luxurious jewelleries, furniture and design showrooms.
In the heart of Milan, just a few meters from the Duomo, gloriously raises magnetic eight-floor Rinascente, which with its refined and contemporary atmosphere offers a wide selection of the world’s most famous brands. Surely, it is a more elegant and cutting-edge fashion district of Italy.
Clearly, the shopping boulevards do not end there. The capital of fashion is able to gently satisfy every taste and portfolio: from younger and cheaper brands in Via Torino or Corso Buenos Aires, to the outlets of well-known brands in Corso Vittorio Emanuele.
The Eternal City is highly appreciated by natives and international visitors not only for its authentic historical and architectural beauties, but also for plenty of streets perfect for shopping. In Rome, the best place for outstanding summer shopping is surely the Tridente area with its famous via Condotti, via Borgognona and via Frattina, also known as the most expensive streets of the Italian capital. Among other Roman paths of fashion one should surely mention the streets adjacent to Spanish square, dotted with jewelleries and boutiques of the most important Italian and international designers.
Though in the sphere of high fashion Rome is considered second to Milan, the Eternal City states its laws in this field as well. So, for example, in 2005 Fendi opened its seven-level chief store in the neoclassical Palazzo Fendi.
Another famous street of fashion and shopping of the Eternal City is via del Corso, which stretches from Piazza Venezia to Piazza del Popolo. There, in via Colonna one should visit the Galleria Alberto Sordi (also one of the residences of the Council of Ministers) that offers both: the most popular brands and the most affordable prices.
Other notable Roman streets of shopping are located in the Prati district (near the Vatican City): these are Via Cola di Renzo, Via Giulio Cesare, Via Ottaviano and Via Candia. Here one can find shops for all tastes, wallets and needs: not just fashionable clothing and accessories, but also everyday items.
One of the most beautiful cities in the entire world, Venice – the third Italian city after Rome and Milan to have the highest tourist level – continues to exert its inimitable charm.
The charming Venetian calli have long gained the fame of shopping and fashion “luxury zone”. Besides, in the City of Mirrors appears impossible not to wear Made in Italy clothes or accessories! Therefore, the road connecting Piazza San Marco with the Rialto Bridge is one of the main shopping streets, with plenty of shops and boutiques offering the world’s famous brands at affordable prices.
The luxurious Vallaresso area and the end of Piazza San Marco are amongst the “top-streets” of sophisticated fashion and major brands – both Italian and international – such as Prada, Louis Vuitton, La Perla, Gucci, Salvatore Ferragamo etc.
The city of Dante, which has maintained its charm and splendour of the Past, never ceases to surprise with its colourful marbles of churches, masterpieces of art and architecture that evoke the development of Renaissance culture. Adored by Italians and international tourists, the today’s streets of Florence are also amongst the “Top Streets” of shopping in Italy.
The enchanting Via Tornabuoni – one of the central Florentine streets, just a few steps from the Duomo – represents a boulevard of the Italian most famous brands, such as Gucci, Armani, Ferragamo, Versace, Prada and Roberto Cavalli, together with French Yves Saint Laurent’s. In the end of street, in Piazza Antinori there are boutiques of Hermes and Louis Vuitton, followed by Dolce & Gabbana in Via degli Strozzi, Valentino in Via Tosinghi, and La Perla in Via della Vigna Nuova.
Walking down the streets in the neighbourhood of Piazza Repubblica one can encounter many other fashionable stores. Do not miss Via Roma and Via Calzaiuoli (from Duomo to Palazzo Vecchio), along with via De ‘Cerretani (from Santa Maria Novella Station to Duomo).
International tourists have long appreciated Italy as an unbeatable shopping destination. During the summer, Italian boutiques and shops attract visitors – both Italians and tourists from all over the World – even more due to the alluring summer sales. The discounts begin in the beginning of July, with around 20-25%, and reach 70% in the second half of August. However, already during the first few weeks of Italian summer sales period the best items and the most sought-after sizes will be sold… So, brothers and sisters, let’s hasten and have fun!!!