Shopping Precincts 10 of Melbourne’s best places for a dose of retail therapy
|General city shopping hours are Monday to Thursday 9am-5pm with late night shopping on Friday to 9pm. Most shops are open all day Saturday (9am-5pm) and Sunday 10am-5pm. |
1. Southgate and the CBD: on the banks of the Yarra River opposite Flinders Street Station, Southgate is in the heart of Melbourne’s arts precinct. With its innovative art, fashion and homeware stores, and a variety of cafes, bars and restaurants, the complex is great for serious shopping, or a casual browse. Melbourne Central has more than 300 stores and covers two city blocks and is situated between Lonsdale, Swanston, LaTrobe and Elizabeth streets. QV is Melbourne's new inner city laneway precinct featuring a dynamic mix of high-end fashion and lifestyle retailers and a European style piazza with cafés, restaurants and bars, between Swanston and Russell streets and Lonsdale and Little Lonsdale streets. The historic Melbourne General Post Office (GPO) on the corner of Bourke and Elizabeth streets has been remade into a fashion, food and shopping precinct of serious sophistication.
2. Toorak Road, South Yarra and Toorak: exclusive clothing and footwear boutiques make this area a must for the fashion conscious shopper. Established designer labels, and a range of stylish cafes and restaurants may be found in the area between Punt and Grange Roads.
3. Chapel Street, South Yarra: Chapel Street has been labelled as the fashion strip of Australia and between Dandenong Road and Toorak Road is where the most fashionable shops and shoppers can be found.
4. Bridge Road and Swan Street, Richmond: this is where to find the best of Melbourne’s designer factory outlets and seconds shops. Many of these stores feature the work of young, independent Australian designers.
5. Brunswick Street, Fitzroy: an alternative street of designer clothes, bohemian boutiques and cafes and bars.
6. Lygon Street, Carlton: the home of mozzarella, caffe latte, pasta and all things Italian, includes gorgeous designer clothes, shoes and stylish gifts.
7. Smith Street, Collingwood : from fashion to sporting good factory outlets: Bardot, Davenport, Calvin Klein, Bendon, Adidas, Nike, to name a few, there’s a bargain or two to be found here.
8. St Kilda Esplanade Art & Craft Market: unique handcrafted gifts are made and sold by stall holders along this beachfront esplanade. There are 200 stalls of quality art and craft items at a range of prices. Upper Esplanade, St Kilda. Open every Sunday 10am-5pm.
9. The Sunday Market Victorian Arts Centre: in the heart of Melbourne’s arts and culture precinct this market features local artists and craftsmen who sell their own work. 100 St Kilda Road, Melbourne. Open every Sunday 10am-5pm.
10. Hidden Secrets shopping tours are half-day walking tours of the city centre that take in the city’s celebrated lanes, alleys and arcades and promise to make you a local before lunchtime. From Renaissance-style stationery at Il Papiro to Retrostar’s vintage clothing emporium, you will be introduced to well concealed lofts and basements brimming with ‘trade secrets’. Hidden Secrets tours depart Wednesdays and Saturdays from 10am to 1pm (or by appointment) and cost $70 per person. To book a walking tour call (03) 9329 9665 or visit www.shoppingsecrets.com
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