Shopping tour to Florence
Ever thought of combining two most pleasant things in life? Discovering new city and shopping? Ok, ok this is the thing we all have done at some point. What about if I mention unbelievable shopping, meaning great choice and shamefully low prices? And I am talking about world-known brands, such as Gucci, Prada, Miu-Miu, Dolce and Gabanna, Richmond and any other you can think of! Yep, this time we are going to talk about outlet shopping. And this paradise located in one of the most romantic places in Italy – Tuscany, specifically Florence. For a very long time the location of the outlets was kept secret, but now we are revealing everything discovered in person! Ready? Set! Go!
First book your tickets in advance, in this order you’ll get the best price, because there is no straight flight to Florence. When choosing the hotel, don’t bother about the prices as any 2 star hotel will work just fine, they are pretty good there, but pay very close attention to where it is located, as everything around Florence is – 5 minutes from center, but after exhausting shopping you probably won’t have enough strength to want even those 5 (in reality 15) minutes. So look for the hotel next to the train station Santa Maria Novella, that’s where the bus from the airport will bring you and from where all the trains to outlets go. Plan about 3 days on place, this is pretty much enough to discover the city and visit about everything, of course if you are not here to go to museums and churches (there are pretty much to see from this perspective).
Now the most pleasant part – talking about shopping. There are three main outlets situated next to Florence:
The Mall, presenting such brands as: Agnona, Alexander McQueen, Balenciaga, Bettega Veneta, Emanuel Ungaro, Ermenegildo Zegna, Fendi, Giorgio Armani, Gucci, Hogan, La Perla, Marni, Salvatore Ferragamo, Sergio Rossi, Stella McCartney, Tod’s, Valentino, Yohji Yamamoto, Emilio Pucci and many others. Opening hours: Monday-Sunday: 10.00-19.00. This is the place where most probably you are going to spend the whole day, as it created like a small city of shops, on its territory it has fashionable Café, where you can enjoy a nice meal or a cup of capuccino. How to get there? Take a train from Florence Santa Maria Novella station to Incisa Valdarno, there call for a taxi 338 3376959 or 339 3374976 or just go to the café next to the train station called “Lucciola Café” and ask for a taxi. It will take you 5 minutes by taxi and you are there!
From the Mall it is very easy to get to the Dolce and Gabanna outlet, where you can catch a taxi as well or another possibility is again from Florence take train to Rignano Sull’Arno andtaxi from the station 5 min.Open on Monday-Saturday: 9.00 – 18.00, Sundays 15.00-19.00.
The trip to the Prada outlet advisable to plan for some other day, as it is located in the small town Montevarchi, where you go again by train and taxi after. Officially it is called Space and offers huge selection of the well-known brands, such as: Helmut Lang, Miu-Miu, Prada and Prada Sport, Jil Sander. Open on Monday-Friday: 10.00-19.00, Saturday: 9.30-19.00, Sunday: 14.00-19.00. Upon your arrival be prepared to take the ticket and wait some time in the line, so come early because there are many willing to by the boots from the last collection of Jil Sander for 70 euros only or some Prada pants for 30 euros!
That’s the most famous outlets, but if you walk around the city you’ll find lots of small ones, where the selection and the prices are not loosing in any way. So enjoy the city, shopping and the food. Ahhh, the food! If you want to try traditional Tuscan food one place you have to visit for sure - Trattoria Za-Za, located at Piazza del Mercato Centrale, 26r (www.trattoriazaza.it). Try the lamb with rare kind of mushroom grown only there and delicious wine, after you probably won’t resist having great dessert with a cup of espresso.
So, call to your travel agent, book the tickets and go-go-go! And enjoy every minute of this unforgettable trip!