Get Some Retail Therapy at These Top D.C. Shopping Centers
By Gina Gallucci White
Washington Local Expert
Are your shoes totally last season? Have you lost weight and now your clothes don't fit as well? Is an important event upcoming and you don't have something suitable to wear? Well then it's time to go shopping and what better place to spend your cold hard cash than in Washington, D.C. where a wide spectrum of retailers can be found throughout the area.
Many people may hear Union Station and just think of trains but there are more than 100 specialty shops located at the terminal which dates back to 1907.
Looking for high-end brands? Head over to the newest area shopping center CityCenterDC for luxury labels like kate spade new York, TUMI, BOSS and Longchamp. Tysons Galleria has been referred to the 'Rodeo Drive of the east coast' so you are sure to a number of high-end goods here.
Eastern Market is a great destination to go to on a weekend. You may buy from more than 100 vendors selling a wide variety of items, get fresh produce from farms in the area and listen to live music. While it may give a neighborhood vibe, tourists from around the world come to this market.
Get your credit cards and cash ready because shopping centers await your purchases in Washington, D.C.
Chevy Chase Pavilion
Sharing a space with offices and the Embassy Suites Hotel, this sleek, modern shopping pavilion features a number of big-name retailers like Old Navy, H&M, J. Crew and Starbucks. If you aren't done treating yourself, grab a meal at one of two restaurants by celebrity chef Bryan Voltaggio. Try RANGE on the second floor for dinner and Lunchbox for midday offerings. They also have a Cheesecake Factory which will surely entice you to stop in for a bite. If your feet are aching, grab a comfy chair in the atrium area. METRO: Friendship Heights (202-686-5335)
Not to be confused by the nearby Tysons Corner Center, this shopping haven has been known to be called the 'Rodeo Drive of the East Coast.' Luxury brands and fashion unite here with many names you will recognize -- Cartier, Burberry, Chanel, Coach, Emporio Armani, Gucci, and Louis Vuitton just to name a few. You will also find several restaurants to enjoy during your trip including the Lebanese Taverna, Maggiano's Little Italy and P.F. Chang's China Bistro. If shopping leaves you completely exhausted, the galleria is connected to a Ritz Carlton Hotel just waiting to attend to your needs. METRO: Tysons Corner (703-827-7700)
Crystal City Shops
From fashion to food, jewelry to health and beauty products, this underground shopping emporium has it all and serves as one of Crystal City's top destinations. Located just outside the nation's capital, you will find casual and upscale dining options including celebrity chef Spike Mendelsohn's Good Stuff Eatery, Morton's Steakhouse, McCormick & Schmick's Seafood and Ruth's Chris Steakhouse. For those looking to shop for gifts, you may want to check stores like The Engraving Shop, Art Works, Flowers with Love and Schakolad Chocolate Factory. If you are looking to buy something for yourself, you are sure to find something unforgettable at this group of shops. METRO: Crystal City. (703-892-4680, 703-922-4636)
Tysons Corner Center
Hope you are wearing your tennis shoes because this center is one of the largest shopping malls in the United States. With more than 300 specialty shops and restaurants, shopping is an all day event. Located just 13 miles outside of Washington, D.C., the venue features an AMC movie theater in case you need a break in between shopping. Be sure to check out the center's website for information on sales and events happening during your visit. Don't feel like carrying all those packages home? The center offers same day delivery for $5. Local zip codes only. METRO: Tysons Corner (703-893-9400, 888-289-7667)
Fashion Centre at Pentagon City
Located in Arlington, Va., just outside the nation's capital, this shopping destination has more than 170 stores to tempt your wallet and bank account. You will find high-end stores mixed in with name-brand shops. Some stores include Apple, BOSS HUGO BOSS, kate spade new York, Michael Kors and Tumi. There are a number of eateries to grab a quick bite before heading out for more shopping. They have free Wi-Fi access so log on to avoid extra data use. Don't leave without taking a ride in the glass elevator which goes three stories high. METRO: Pentagon City. (703-415-2400)
Have some time before an event at the Verizon Center? Head to Gallery Place located next to the entertainment venue for a little retail therapy in the Chinatown neighborhood. Chose from stores like Ann Taylor, Aveda and Urban Outfitters or grab a bite at one of their many eateries like Sushi Go Round or Bar Louie. Want to have some fun? Head to Lucky Strike for a game of bowling or catch the latest movies at their 14-screen Regal movie theater. For those who are members of the Washington Sports Clubs, there is an on-site gym in case you want to burn some calories. METRO: Gallery Place/Chinatown. (202-778-3150)
National Harbor Shopping
If you are looking for a place that has great shopping options along with fun activities to do, National Harbor is your best bet. Located right beside the Potomac River, National Harbor features more than 150 retailers at the Tanger Outlets ranging from major name brands to specialty shops. All that walking makes you hungry so take your pick from over 30 dining options. Be sure to leave some time to take a ride on the Capital Wheel which gives you a bird's eye view of some of the district's most well-known buildings. ((301) 203-4170)
Built in 1873, this venue has served as a community hub for the Capitol Hill neighborhood and a destination for tourists from around the world. While the market is open during the week (except on Mondays), you will really want to come on the weekends where you can hear live music, get fresh produce from local farms and peruse over 100 exhibitors selling a wide variety of handmade merchandise including arts, crafts, jewelry and antiques. Be sure to sign up for their monthly newsletter to discover what will be going on when you visit. METRO: Eastern Market. (202-543-7293)
Luxury international fashion brands are worn by many power players in the nation's capital, yet people could not find these labels in downtown until recently. Thanks to CityCenterDC, a 10-acre, mixed-use development, folks can scoop up high-end shopping options like kate spade new York, Burberry, Zadig & Voltaire, Allen Edmonds, Loro Piana, TUMI, BOSS, Longchamp and Salvatore Ferragamo. All of this retail therapy will leave you hungry so stop into one of the center's restaurants: DBGB Kitchen and Bar by world-renowned chef Daniel Boulud, the Thai-themed Mango Tree restaurant or Raresweets. METRO: Metro Center (202-289-9000)
A train station may seem like an unlikely (and last minute) option to shopping but after undergoing an $160-million renovation, you will understand why this place made the list. One of the district's most popular tourist sites, Union Station not only hosts daily trains and buses but also over 100 specialty shops and restaurants, an outdoor market and a 9-screen movie theatre. A list of stores can be found on the station's website but include Jos. A. Bank Clothiers, H&M, MAC Cosmetics, and President Cigars. Opened in 1907, the station features touches of Roman architecture throughout the structure. METRO: Union Station. METRO: Union Station. (202-289-1908)
About Gina Gallucci White
Gina Gallucci White is an award winning freelance writer with articles appearing in such regional publications as Frederick Magazine, The Daily Record, Montgomery Magazine and The Gazette. She writes about a wide variety of subjects and holds a Bachelor's degree in journalism from West Virginia University. Gina has two kids, can tell the difference between Coke and Pepsi in a blind taste test and admits to knowing all the songs from Frozen.
Read more about Gina Gallucci White here.