Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Florence Shopping Guide

Florence has always had a great hand in commerce. Florence apartments and shops have existed since renaissance times and older, when each area of the city was characterised by a certain craftwork. Members of each guild were required to be descendants of each craft society to join the profession.

In this way, the skills have been handed down through the generations, to their present day glory. Florence is best-known for its gold and jewellery crafts, its leather bags and shoes, its art and renaissance antiques, as well as meats and of course, Chianti wine.
When in Florence, it’s important to note that the city specialises in luxury goods and high quality, so if you really want to go shopping, you´ll need a good budget.

Have a read on for some of the best places to satisfy your shopping desires.
Florence souvenirs and small charms can be found on the Ponte Vecchio bridge.
If you’re hunting for Florentine antiques, you can find the best on Via Maggio.
Leather goods are popular in this city; the best bet for luxury Florence shoe-makers, boutiques and accessories is Via dei Tornabouni, with brands such as Gucci.
If the old Florence pharmacies and perfumeries interest you, go to the Antica Officina di Santa Maria Novella, where it is possible to buy essences from yesteryear.
Pick up some better value in Florence’s high street shops, such as Diesel and Sisley, which are located on the main street Via dei Calzaiuoli near the Duomo.
From Monday through Saturday, look for bargains at Florence’s fleamarket at Piazza dei Ciompi. This outdoor market offers small antiques and nick-nacks.
Finally, for Florence fresh produce, meats and cheeses, an array of leather goods and general market items can be found in the San Lorenzo market, between Via Cavour and Via Nazionale.

Happy shopping and don’t forget to stop along the way for an espresso!

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