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Expert Tips

 

Take an Afternoon and Shop in Florence



 

Formerly the shopping capital of Italy, Florence has quietly been subdued by some of the bigger cities. However, you won’t find some of the same kind of items in Milan or Rome. Florence remains the best place to find hand-carved works and dried spices to take home with you.

 

It would be a shame not to discover some of the leather clothing Florence has been famous for centuries. Misuri offers beautiful leather for reasonable prices while still maintaining an emphasis on classic styles and the art of leather-making. You won’t find better experts to assist you with finding the right purse or jacket for you.

 

You’ll also want to visit Gucci, even if it is just for its historical significance in the city. Gucci carries some of the most beautiful clothing in Florence and tries to keep its Florence location alive. You can also visit the Gucci Museum if you’re a fashion lover and want a break from perusing the many shops. Most of all, you’ll want to see the Mercato Nuovo for bargains and a little bit of Florentine history–this market has been around since the Renaissance when Florence was known for providing the best leather goods in Europe.



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The Mercato Centrale has become a part of Florentine life since its construction in 1876. It's one of the best places to find local produce and the perfect location to search for gifts for friends and family back home. Between the gorgeous fruits and vegetables offered, there are candles and other homemade items that have been part of each family's heritage for decades. It's easy to find something for foodies and wine lovers--you can spend hours strolling through the aisles and eyeing all the different items available. When you visit the Mercato Centrale, you are truly experiencing the life of a Florentine.


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Finding a gift that all of your friends and family will love can take some time and effort, but when you visit Vestri chocolates, you know that you will find something delicious for everyone in your life. Vestri has taken Italy by storm--even though it is a relatively new business, it has won numerous competitions and has established itself as one of the best chocolate shops in the whole city of Florence. Whether you are in the mood for some unique flavors or you want to try some classic options instead, Vestri is the place to go for all of your chocolate needs.


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Finding the perfect pair of shoes can be a challenge, but less so when you are in Florence. One place you will definitely want to stop is Aquazzura–a new location that opened up and that houses some of the best shoes in Italy. Harkening back to Florence's old days as a fashion center, Aquazzura has shoes for all occasions, but truly defines style. If you are looking for a specially-designed pair of heels, you should consider stopping by and talking to the sales staff–they are some of the most knowledgeable people in the city and can recommend some classy kicks.


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It wouldn't be a trip to Tuscany without bringing some delicious foods back home, and Pegna has everything you need in order to transform your kitchen with spices and delicious treats. Open since 1860, Pegna has provided customers with the highest in quality of Italian basil, spices, and more to make your food taste like a nonna's. Pegna also has some incredible wines, and the staff is happy to help you choose something within your budget–you'll find a number of types of chianti ready for you and your friends to sample when you return home after your Italian adventure and enjoy some food.


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Mercato Nuovo
Photo courtesy of Italy Guides


 

Perhaps one of Florence's most iconic and oldest shopping places, the Mercato Nuovo has plenty for leather lovers and those looking to purchase some souvenirs for friends and family back home. You'll find rows and rows of purses and leather jackets available, but don't be afraid to barter and ask for a lower price–they will almost always accept it. It's also an easy walk from the Duomo and the Ponte Vecchio, so it shouldn't be difficult to find while you are spending the day sightseeing and looking for items to take back after your trip. You also can't miss Florence's good luck pig, Il Porcellino.


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LUISAVIAROMA
Photo courtesy of So Stylish So Sweet


 

The online fashion empire has taken to the streets of Florence in between the Duomo and the Piazza della Repubblica. Housing fashion for women, men, and children, you'll find some unique pieces for all occasions. Luisa Via Roma has a number of different items that have a European feel without breaking the bank. It's also a refreshing change from the many luxury shops in Florence where prices can be exorbitant. The shop is also a great place to step inside and enjoy a break from the hot weather. Even if you can't make it to the store, be sure to check out the options online.


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There is nothing more Florentine than Gucci. The founder was raised in the city, and Gucci products are no more at home than displayed at the local museum or in the shop in Florence's most fashionable district. While as expensive as you would imagine, Gucci also has some of the highest-quality leather and the most dedicated staff around. They're happy to help you find the perfect item to take back and remember your trip to Florence by. Also make sure to check out the museum not too far away from the Palazzo Vecchio–it houses clothing from the very beginning of the store until now.


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When you are looking for the perfect example of Florentine leather, you should make sure to peruse Misuri. The company has been around since the early 1900s, and some of the styles available are a combination of classics with a modern edge. You'll find a number of different items to purchase, including coin purses and purses. If you are really thinking about splurging, this can be the perfect place find the leather jacket of your dreams. They'll also make sure to customize the jackets to make you look great. Misuri also has the highest-quality leather you'll find in the city–it's also an amazing place for gifts.


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Bartolucci
Photo courtesy of Qype


 

Wood working as become a lost art, but you can still can find some incredible craftsmen at Bartolucci. Located about ten minutes away from the Duomo, you can find a number of unique pieces to take home with you or to give to your children. Bartolucci's still sees word working the same way it has been done for hundreds of years, and the company has become a well-known name throughout Tuscany. It's also one of the few places in Florence to by a puppet crafted in the likeness of Pinocchio. Whether you are looking for some toys or you just want to see some classic Italian word working, you'll find it here.


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Named as one of the "Top 10" shoe stores in Florence, it's no wonder that Goccia Shoes has developed such a high reputation for delivering quality products that last a lifetime. Using some of the best leather in Florence to create classic and unique designs, you'll find beautiful boots styled to fit the modern traveler while remaining within a reasonable price range. Whether you are looking for some sandals for the summer, or you would like to find some boots to keep you warm in the colder months, Goccia has a professional staff that speaks excellent English and that can help you with your needs.


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Meet Alexa Schnee

Currently residing in Florence, Alex is a travel writer and author. She is addicted to coffee, reading, and seeing new places. She has been to near fifteen different countries in Europe, all...  More About Alexa

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