Are you the kind of traveller whose vacation isn’t quite complete without a good spot of shopping? If you’re heading to Cebu, you’re in for a real adventure. From the famous SM City Cebu to the colourful Tabo sa Banay markets, Cebu offers some of the most diverse, interesting and value-driven retail experiences to be found anywhere. But it’s a busy city, with loads of options, so if you’re wondering how to best conduct your retail therapy sessions, read on.
Before we move onto the ins and outs of shopping in Cebu, here’s a little tip for you. If you’re looking for somewhere lovely to stay, where you can indulge in some luxury and pamper yourself, stay in the Radisson Blu Cebu hotel.
SM City Cebu
SM City Cebu is not only the fourth biggest shopping centre in the Philippines, it’s also the eleventh biggest in the entire world. 11.8 hectares of land and 268,611 square metres of retail floor make up its area, and more than 100,000 people visit every day. (This figure swells to 150,000 on weekends). To join the crowd, you’ll need to head to Cebu’s North Reclamation Area. No more directions are needed – once you’re there, you definitely won’t miss it!
Five hundred shops, cafes and restaurants are on offer, spread across four storeys. As far as fashion goes, you’ll find pretty much anything imaginable – from high-end designer labels to some serious bargains. Plus, like many contemporary malls, SM City Cebu delivers so much more than opportunities to buy and eat. Entertainment is also high on the agenda, so there’s also an amusement park, a ten-pin bowling alley, frequent live shows and a traveller’s lounge.
If you’re concerned that the sheer enormity of SM City Cebu might prove overwhelming, another option is the Ayala Centre. It’s a beautifully-designed mall, in which our increasing desire to bring more greenery into our urban lives has been kept in mind. In fact, wandering around, it’s difficult to believe that hectic city life is just a stone’s throw away. Gardens, parks and water features are seamlessly interwoven with the retail infrastructure.
The focus is definitely on high-end products. International travellers – both tourists and business people – form a significant proportion of the 85,000 or so daily visitors. Think brands like Gap, Zara, Mango and Timex. 2008 saw the addition of ‘The Terraces’, a strip of eateries offering high-quality cuisine, cocktail bars and a stylish, sophisticated atmosphere. There’s also a cinema that stays open until 2am and a chapel.
Gasiano Country Mall
For shoppers on a budget, or those looking for a serious bargain, Gasiano Country Mall is a step down from the glitz and glamour of SM City Cebu and the Ayala Centre. It hasn’t been through the modernisation and extension process, so don’t expect shiny steel, enormous mirrors and landscaping, but do expect a quiet, unpretentious atmosphere and a more pronounced local shopping contingent. You’ll find the Gasiano Country Mall on Banilad Road, Cebu City.
Tabo sa Banay Market
For an even more local (and cheaper!) experience, there’s Tabo Sa Banay. It’s a rich, vibrant bazaar-style market found on Manalili Street in the city. There’ll heat, crowds and sensory overload! But there’ll also be a drastic drop in prices – most items sell in the street at half the prices they do in the airconditioned comfort of malls. Clothing and accessories of every variety are on sale – from smart, office attire to beachy dresses, t-shirts and shorts.
Every street and district in London has its own specific nature and this also applies to shopping opportunities. You could use one hour of your time to check one of the locations meant for shopping, or you could spend an entire day doing this. In both cases, you may be interested in the 7 coolest places to shop in London:
Oxford Street is the best shopping opportunity in the capital of England, with over three hundred shops waiting for you to visit and this includes landmark stores and designer outlets. You can find here the notorious Selfridges, or popular department stores like Debenhams and John Lewis. If you don’t like crowds, you can use one of the side streets.
2. Mayfair and Bond Street
This is the perfect place for shoppers who have more money in their pockets and want to spend on some luxury windows or fancy designer clothes. The place is filled with extravagant retail opportunities and is often visited by celebrities. Some of the products that you can get here come from big companies like Louis Vuitton and Burberry.
3. Jermyn Street and Regent Street
For those with an average budget, there are mid-priced fashion stores on Regent Street, which are the oldest, but also the most popular in London: Liberty, Hamleys, or The Apple Store. Jermyn Street is a historical place that is known for its men clothing shops, where you can find old-fashioned items.
4. Carnaby Street
On this street, a cultural revolution took place in the sixties. Oxford Circus and Picadilly Circus are just two minutes away from the street. The number of brands found on these shops is of 150.
5. Westfield London
Westfield London is more than a place for shopping, because you can eat here, or establish meetings. It is the largest shopping center in London and includes items from companies like Debenhams, Next, or House of Fraser. The number of brands actually goes beyond 700, but there are 250 luxury retailers.
6. King’s Road
On this street you can benefit from a multitude of designer shops, original labels, boutiques, or cafes. Do not forget to visit the Chelsea Antique Market or the famous store that gave birth to the punk movement: Vivienne Westwood.
7. Covent Garden
Covent Garden can be an awesome area for people who want to explore a world of unique gifts, hip fashion, rare sweets, handmade jewelry, street wear, cosmetics, arts and crafts. You can simply window shop in one of the most distinct shopping places in London.
In the best shopping area of London, any avid shopper can feel at home. All types of budgets are covered, but the best stores are the ones where luxury is the most important aspect and that are visited by celebrities.
The author of this article is Alex Price! Alex is director of Marylebone, based digital marketing consultancy 93digital and publisher/editor of http://maryleboneonline.co.uk//. Alex shows professional approach to the articles he writes doing a serious investigation and analyzes for each topic!