While the name of this shop, C.U.C.I.N.A., may not seem unique. However, once you spell out what the acronym actually stands for, 'come una cucina ispira nuovi appetiti' (how a kitchen can inspire new appetites), it gives the store a whole new meaning. C.U.C.I.N.A. is your one-stop-shop for cookware and interesting gizmos and gadgets for the kitchen. It's the perfect place to pick up that unique gift for someone who loves spending time in the kitchen. They have rows of cookware and utensils dedicated to baking pastries, cooking Italian dishes and there's even a special aisle for wine enthusiasts. The flagship store is just a stone's throw away from Piazza di Spagna with other locations in Fleming, Prati and Parioli. BUS: 116, 80, 52, 53. METRO: Spagna, Flaminio.
Recommended for Best Shopping because: C.U.C.I.N.A is Rome's answer to all your cookware and homeware needs.
Maria's expert tip: This store will also ship outside of Italy including to the US and offers a wedding registry.
Big American-style department stores never really existed in Rome - until now. The Italian brand gallery, La Rinascente has moved location and this new, designer store is multi-level and will impress the fussiest of luxury shoppers. Located in the heart of Rome, between the Spanish Steps and Trevi Fountain on Via del Tritone, it features 6 floors (across 14,000 square meters) and sells clothing, shoes, accessories, beauty products and household items. Among many more, you'll find brands like Gucci, Fendi, Michael Kors, Swarovski, Tod's, Stone Island and Lacoste. The new flagship store has brought the first Alexander McQueen to Rome and sells quality, top of the line children's clothing and personal shopping service is available on request. There are a rooftop terrace and a gourmet food court too. METRO: Spagna, Barberini
Recommended for Best Shopping because: The new Rinascente is a well trusted Italian brand of department stores and centrally located, is perfect to meet your shopping needs.
Maria's expert tip: Visit at lunch time and enjoy the diverse offering at the 6th-floor designer food court.
Open in 1926, Davide Cenci is a high-end specialty clothing store where the most affluent of Romans shop. Here one can find a wide range of Italian brand names in cashmere, silk, men's tailored suits, sophisticated women's skirts and trousers. This classy outlet caters for men, women and children and stocks brands like Giorgio Armani, Versace, Burberry, Hogan, Lacoste and Tods. The store located in the heart of the Centro Storico also features leather boots and shoes and children's clothing. Walk in, even just to check out the stylish minimalist fit-out design. BUS: 116, 80, 492, 53, 52. METRO: Spagna.
Recommended for Best Shopping because: Davide Cenci is renowned for its style, class and quality designer brands.
Maria's expert tip: One can find some pretty good bargains here during Rome's summer sales in July and winter sales in January.
Tucked away on a discreet cobblestone street in the historical center right behind the Pantheon is one of the most sophisticated hat boutiques in all of Rome. The store, Borsalino has been around since 1857 and the stylish fedoras and Panama hats have been donned by stars such as Greta Garbo, Audrey Hepburn and even James Dean - just to name a few. Not only are these unique, dashing hats made with the most intricate of detail, but they are also still created with techniques and machines that are over 100 years old. A piece of shopping history in a modern day Rome. BUS: 116, 80, 492, 52, 53. METRO: Spagna, Flaminio
Recommended for Best Shopping because: Borsalino is one of few stores in Rome steeped in history and still producing quality Italian made goods.
Maria's expert tip: The hat store has two other locations in Rome: one near the Trevi fountain and the other at Piazza del Popolo.
When one thinks of high-end Italian fashion, the first thing that comes to mind is Dolce & Gabbana. The former couple got their start in fashion as assistants at a fashion atelier in Milan in the 80s. Soon after, their inspiration and experience drove them to open their first store in 1982. Since then, the designers have left their mark in the fashion world leading them to become of the most successful designers around the world. The Dolce & Gabbana store at Piazza di Spagna is flashy and full of colors and sequins. The exuberant Rome stores sell both men and women's clothing. BUS: 116, 80. METRO: Spagna.
Recommended for Best Shopping because: Dolce & Gabbana is the pinnacle of classy and quality Italian fashion and design.
Maria's expert tip: The high-end fashion store also sells sunglasses, shoes and purses.
With the success of modern technology and email, virtually no one writes letters anymore. However, if you're looking to take a little token of your vacation home with you or write a romantic letter to that special someone about your Roman Holiday, Il Papiro near the Pantheon is the place to go. The little shop sells elegant and unique stationery materials such as letterhead, postcards, delicate watermarked paper and more. Its exquisite writing materials and hand-decorated paper make this little specialty shop a favorite for tourists and locals alike. Shop for yourself or find the perfect gift for that person in your life who has everything.
Recommended for Best Shopping because: Il Papiro is the perfect find for those looking for unique mementos and gifts.
Maria's expert tip: The store also carries a superb collection of presses for paper embossing, ink stamps, wax seals and Murano glass pens.
Like La Rinascente, COIN is an upscale department store located in the Prati area right by the Vatican. The store is actually located on one of Rome's famous shopping streets in Rome on Via Cola di Rienzo. The store has several floors featuring homeware, bedding, men's and women's clothing, children's clothing, shoes and accessories and perfume and make-up. The store boasts a wide range of Italian and international high street designer brands. COIN has two other locations: one in the San Giovanni neighborhood and a smaller installment which is conveniently located within Rome's central train station, Termini. BUS: 492, 81. METRO: Ottaviano, Lepanto.
Recommended for Best Shopping because: Coin department store has all the family's shopping needs covered from clothing to shoes to homeware.
Maria's expert tip: The locations at Termini and Via Cola di Rienzo also feature the famous cosmetics brand MAC.
Known all over the world Italian brand, La Perla is a sexy but sophisticated lingerie shop for visitors to the Eternal City who are looking to pick up something romantic for their Roman Holiday. The upscale lingerie store sells top of the line bras, underwear, sleepwear and babydoll slips. In recent years they have also entered the perfume market and sell in-store only men's and women's fragrances. If you want to pamper yourself with something glamorous and flirty for the bedroom, make sure to stop at La Perla for some Dolce Vita intimate wear. BUS: 116, 80, 52, 53. METRO: Spagna.
Recommended for Best Shopping because: La Perla is your place in Rome for the top of the range of Italian made and designed intimate wear.
Maria's expert tip: The shop also features a swimwear collection launched in partnership with designer Jean Paul Gaultier.
Famed Italian turned global chain Eataly, touched down in Rome about a year ago. The giant gourmet food store opened up its Rome location in the former air terminal at Ostiense station right alongside Italy's newest and fastest (and private) railway Italo. The Italian culinary complex is the chains biggest store to date. It covers over 17,000 meters of space and is spread out over 4 floors. At the food market, one can shop from over 14,000 different 'Made in Italy' products to choose from and if you're here to eat, it features more than 23 restaurants and snack bars. There are tasting stands where one can sample some of the finest Roman and Italian delicacies while crossing off items on your shopping list. Eataly is like a foodie wonderland and certainly worth a visit during your trip.
Recommended for Best Shopping because: This is Rome's one-stop-shop for eating, buying and learning about Italian food.
Maria's expert tip: Eataly host a wide variety of food and learning initiatives. Visit the website prior to your visit to see if any food events or promotions are taking place.
A bit of a schlep from the center of Rome is one of the largest shopping malls in the Eternal City. Galleria Porta di Roma has over 220 stores and restaurants. It also has a mega multi-sala movie theater with 24 different screens. The mall which is spread out over several floors includes men's and women's clothing, children's wear, shoes and accessories, sporting good stores and Swedish furniture giant IKEA. Some of the most popular stores aside from IKEA include H&M, Bata (an Italian shoe store), COIN (a department store) Zara clothes and home store, Sandro Ferrone (a designer from Rome), Mediaworld and Sisley. The restaurants include everything from fast food such as McDonald's or a middle-eastern kebab to sit down restaurants such as Fratelli La Bufala pizzeria. BUS: 80, 38.
Recommended for Best Shopping because: With over 220 stores and restaurants, Galleria Porta di Roma has all your shopping needs covered.
Maria's expert tip: During the summer, the mall organizes all sorts of outdoor activities in the courtyard such as rock climbing and skateboarding for kids. In the winter, they set up an outdoor ice skating rink on the terrace.