Shopping in Rome (part I)
Since the ancient times Rome has been the center of the world trade. Best masters and craftsmen brought here their artworks and goods such as gold, furs, wine and slaves to meet the demands of the rich strata of the society. The trade of the present day follows the traditions of the past. Italian designers have a good reputation due to the fine and luxurious clothes, cotton and leather items (especially bags and shoes) as well as materials for decoration, textiles, ceramic and glass ware.
The life in Rome isn’t cheap and the goods cost more than in Florence or Milan. But it is compensated by the amount of shops situated here. Department stores Grandi magazzini stand out against a background of the other shops. The most famous are four retail networks: La Standa, Upini, Coin and La Rinascenta. The latter is the most expensive and the first is the cheapest. The quality of all the goods in Italian shops is high but it is more profitable to buy things at small shops rather than in big stores where the prices are usually higher.
The Italian shopping capital is without a doubt Milan. But it’s even better for Rome: you can relax and simply enjoy strolling through the city and popping into the shops you meet on the way. The set of signboards is the same in all the trade streets: one will certainly find bags Furla, lacy dresses Expensive!, Benetton and Sisley. Among the inexpensive brands one can distinguish Blu Sand (very cheap and rather nice things of an unpredictable quality), Habana (T-shirts up to 15 EUR), Le Group (pretty dresses, trousers and coats), Etam (mainly cotton things plus flax and cute pyjamas), List (this one is more expensive but the items fit ideally).
Sistina, Gregoriana, Frattina and Borgognona streets host the most luxurious boutiques, such as Armani, Gianfranco Ferre, Gucci, Dolce & Gabbana, Valentine, Rocco Barocco, Trussardi and other. Of course no discounts are possible in these shops.
Via del Corso is the central shopping area of Rome. Posh boutiques stand close to democratic brands for the young. Also worth visiting are Via del Tritone, Via Barberinini, Via Vittoria, Via Nazionale and Via Cola di Rienzo.
Speaking about trade sightseeings of Rome it’s impossible not to mention two districts where the prices are the lowest. The first one is near the Termini rail station. It is the favourite meeting place of the beggars so it’s better not to show up there in the evening. Due to such a neighbourhood the rent charge is not high and the prices in shops are low. Besides after the reconstruction a new trade centre was constructed here so it is a nice place for a noon shopping. Another place which is much more picturesque is the famous flea market Mercato delle Puici. Being patient enough one can find practically everything here, and for a much lower price than in the shop. But one should bear in mind that the market works only at Sundays till 13 am so it’s necessary to go there in the morning.
The most popular goods in Rome are men and woman clothes, shoes, leather articles, including bags and shoes. Designer items are not cheap but they are cheaper in Italy than anywhere in the world. Also popular are interior articles, ceramics and different forgeries.
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Home2Rome 2009 – Team Probe-le-Rome