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Berlin is a great place to shop, and we're definitely not talking malls and chains. The most famous and longest retail spine is the Kurfürstendamm in western Berlin, but it’s no secret that for the best buys you have to hit the imaginatively curated indie boutiques scattered around its distinctive neighborhoods. It is they who best reflect the city's zest for life, individual style and aspirations, and a bottomless entrepreneurial spirit. And isn’t it much more fun to flaunt some unique outfit or accessory you won’t find on the high street back home?
In fact, the only thing typical about the Berlin look is that there is no such thing. Basically anything goes, the more idiosyncratic the better. Berliners see nothing wrong with combining black leggings from a cheap chain store with a flared skirt from an up-and-coming local designer (Flagshipstore has a great selection) and a pair of 70s leather boots hunted down at a flea market like Flohmarkt am Mauerpark. Individuality triumphs over conformity any day, and that’s true for fashionistas of any age or gender,
But it’s not just fashion and accessories waiting to be stashed into your suitcase. Berlin is also big when it comes to design and already back in 2006 got the Unesco nod as a City of Design. There’s even an entire design district ready to inspire your decorating fancies. Of course you can also pick up legendary ‘made in Germany’ products like Meissen porcelain, stuffed animals by Steiff or a fountain pen by MontBlanc. Or if you want to enjoy the flavor of Berlin back home, stock up on gin by Berlin Brandstifter, chocolates by Erich Hamann or honey by Berliner Honig.