SHOPPING         

 

 

SAY HELLO TO SOME GOOD BUYS              

Italian goods are renowned for their quality, design and style, with every town offering unique craftsmanship. From Milan’s peerless fashion designs to Como’s silk and Cremona’s violins; from the marble of Massa Carrara, Murano’s timeless Venetian glassware and the genius of Piedmont’s goldsmiths to Ravenna’s mosaics and the ceramic beauties of Vietri sul Mare; Italy is a shopper’s and gift-giver’s wonderland where you always find more than you bargained for.

 

 

Main street shopping      

Italy’s main avenues and boulevards are vital to the country’s shopping scene, and a long-observed social convention. Here you can browse store windows with the Italians, checking the prices and the latest trends as they stroll and enjoy one another’s company.

 

  

Sale months     

Set sale dates are established twice a year by the local authorities, so they can vary from city to city, but are normally in January and July. Seasonal stock is marked down to clear and make way for new merchandise.

 

  OPEN-AIR MARKETS         
  ROME         

Porta Portese (every Sunday)

This enormous flea market specializes in clothing, shoes, music CDs, house and kitchen wares, outdoor gear, luggage, tools and much more.

 

Campo de' Fiori (daily except Sundays)

The day’s freshest food produce and meats are the main attraction on this exuberant Roman piazza.

 

FLORENCE         

 

Piazza San Lorenzo (daily)

Stroll this famous market specializing in clothing, souvenirs and leather goods.

 

Mercato Centrale (Mondays through Saturdays)

Steps from the Piazza San Lorenzo, this two-level indoor market features fragrant cheeses and fresh meats and a kaleidoscope of vegetables and fruit.

 

  

MILAN        

 

Fiera di Senigallia (Saturdays)

Set by Navigli’s charming canals, the numerous stands contain new and used articles from the ethnic and modern to the vintage and collectible.

 

Mercato di Viale Papiniano (Tuesdays and Saturdays)

This gigantic market hosts plenty of vendors hawking their wares, especially clothing and shoes.

 

  

NAPLES        

 

Mercato di Antignano (Monday through Saturday)

Food, clothing and housewares await the eager shopper at this engaging marketplace, located in the Vomero district.

 

 

BOLOGNA         

 

La Piazzola (every Friday and Saturday)

Clothing, shoes and more are found at this labyrinthine shopper’s paradise.

 

 

TURIN         

 

Porta Palazzo (Monday through Saturday)

This celebrated market, one of Europe’s largest, is held in the Piazza della Repubblica, highlighted by a vast selection of delectable food items.

 

Gran Baloon (Second Sunday of each month)

The savvy collector will love this market of antique furniture, books, clothing and more, all from a time gone by.

 

AREZZO           

 

Piazza Grande (first weekend of each month)

Antique buffs will enthuse over the selections of collectible items and heirlooms.

 

PALERMO           

 

La Vucciria (daily)

An energetic, memorable market offering the finest food, including freshly caught fish from local waters. Perfect for preparing picnic lunches.

 

  

MILAN FASHION WEEKS        

 

These are core events on the couture calendar. In mid-March, the fall/winter collections are previewed. The spring/summer collections are unveiled in October.

www.cameramoda.it

 

  

DERUTA        

Everyone wants to bring home a “piece” of Italy as a reminder of their travels. The hill town of Deruta, in Umbria, has been famed for its glazed and glossy majolica earthenware since the 15th and 16th centuries. Today’s shopper will marvel at the elegant, vivid and regal pieces created in the workshops and bottegas by talented artisans.

 

 

 

OUTLETS          

A more economical way of keeping up with the trends and a relatively new concept here, these suburban centers located within warehouses or in shopping villages offer discounted designer labels from factory surplus or previous seasons.

 

 

Fifty Factory Stores are located throughout the northern part of Italy with two malls in Aosta, Biella, Meda near Milan, and Modena near Bologna. The malls contain mostly contemporary fashions with brands like Cerruti, Henry Lloyd and Guy Laroche.

www.fifty.it

 

 

 

Franciacorta Outlet Villane. Guess, Gianfranco Ferre and Frette’s famous Italian linens are just a few of the top fashion brands in this high-tech mall featuring an Autogrill food court and located in Rodengo Saiano near Brescia.

www.franciacortaoutlet.it

 

Fashion District offers an array of designer labels, with mall outlets in Bagnolo San Vito in Mantova; Valmontone, south of Rome; and Molfetta, near Bari.

www.fashiondistrict.it

 

La Galleria Outlet Center Seriate is located near Bergamo, with over 52 shops featuring clothing and accessories for men, women, children, home furnishings and food courts.

www.lagalleriaoutletcenter.it

 

McArthurGlen Designer Outlets has three locations, Serravalle Outlet near Alessandria, the Castello Romano near Rome, and Barberino di Mugello near Florence. The malls contain over 150 stores including clothing, footwear and accessories, all at significant savings.

www.mcarthurglen.it

 

Vicolungo Outlets, in Vicolungo near Novara, has prestigious name brands of clothing, sportswear accessories, home furnishings, cosmetics and products for the whole family.

www.vicolungooutlets.com

 

Castel Guelfo Outlet is just 15 miles from Bologna, specializing in designer labels and accessories priced up to 70 percent off. There is a playground for kids.

www.outletcastelguelfo.it

 

 

Fidenza Village, near Parma, mixes bargains like Reebok and Quicksilver for the younger shopper, with Versace, Pancaldi and Furla for the brand name seekers.

www.fidenzavillage.com

 

Wine Outlet features wines sold directly from the producer to the consumer, and is found in Rovereto near Trento.

www.wineoutlet.it

 

  Valdichiana Outlet Village is surrounded by charming villages in the heart of the Val di Chiana near Arezzo and offers over 20 thousand square meters of designer shopping heaven.

www.valdichianaoutlet.it

 

TAX-FREE SHOPPING IN ITALY (I.V.A. Refund)           

The tax (VAT) on the purchases you make in Italy can be 20%, 10% or 4%, depending on what kind of goods you are buying, and it is included in the sales price. All visitors residing outside of the European Union are entitled to claim back the tax, if they spend 154,94 Euro (VAT included) or more in one shop in one day (except accommodations, dining or tourist services).

The goods need to be exported within three months plus the month of purchase. Example: If you make your purchases on April 10th, you must leave the country no later than July 31st.

 

The goods purchased and the relevant invoice must be shown at the Customs of exit from the EU territory. The Customs office, after having ascertained that all the requirements are met endorses the invoice. Note that the goods must be shown at the customs office: if the traveller intends to carry them by plane, he must go to the Customs office to declare them before checking in the baggage.

 

The refund is made directly by the Italian seller according to the terms agreed with the buyer when the goods were purchased (for example, by credit into a bank account, credit card, cheque, etc.). Alternatively, there are some TAX-FREE companies that can grant immediate VAT cash refund when the goods leave the Italian or Community territory, i.e. without the passenger to return the invoice to the seller: however you can use this procedure only at the most important airports or Customs borders.  For further information

www.italiantourism.com/money.html

            

 

 

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