There are often reasons why we visit certain cities. It could be its landmarks, its history or even the restaurants. But for some, it is the shops. As a designer handbag addict (sorry bank account) some cities stand out more than others when it comes to the deciding where to head to get my next fashion fix. Zalando, an online fashion retailer, conducted their own research and created a list of the most fashionable destinations in the world. Together with Frank Wright, experts in male fashion and retailers of leather boots, we look at what makes them top cities for fashionistas and how much it’ll cost you to visit.
5. Florence, Italy
Florence is one of our favourite cities in the world and over the past decade, it seems that it’s not just us that appreciate the Tuscan delight. It has fast become a popular city with more people discovering the wonderful art museums, colourful architecture and quaint shopping streets. The Italian city is home to big names such as Gucci and Salvatore Ferragamo as well as other big-name boutiques which can be found at Via Tornabuoni.
As well as the established world-famous designers, Florence is home to a number of local markets and tanneries, many of which are from a family of traders who have been creating high-quality leather goods for centuries. Find yourself an accessory that’s truly unique, we’d recommend a leather belt or pair of shoes. There’s also the unmissable Ponte Vecchio for jewellery lovers — discover pieces set with precious gemstones that you’d struggle to find anywhere else.
See panoramic views of the city from rooftop bars such as The Grand Hotel Baglioni and the Torre Guelfa Hotel. They are the perfect places to capture breathtaking shots of Florence from whilst you enjoy a drink and soak up the atmosphere.
Return flight: From £67*
Mid-range accommodation: £97-176
4. Venice, Italy
Famous for its picturesque waterways and scenic canals and the city where we got engaged, Venice gives oozes luxury and class. Traditionally, the local craftsmen specialised in creating the now world-famous, delicate masks that are worn for the Carnival of Venice and also for their glass-blowing techniques. However, the Italian city is now becoming a must visit location for fashion lovers with its prestigious showrooms and ateliers of big designers.
If you’re looking for designer boutiques, head towards St Mark’s Square, look out for the streets Calle delle Mercerie or Calle Larga XXII Marzo and shop to your heart’s content. Also, take the time to discover charming side streets where you can buy custom made Venetian slippers and other garments unique to the city. They are perfect gifts for friends and family or maybe a memento to remind you of your travels for yourself.
Venice ranked lesser than the other destinations according to Zalando due to its lower number of fashion schools in the city and their rankings. But, that’s not to say it’s not a fashion aficionado’s paradise.
Return flight: From £19*
Mid-range accommodation: £62-159
3. Vienna, Austria
The capital of Austria sits in the east of the country and is well-known for its elaborate palaces, historic buildings, composers as well as the film The Sound of Music of course. And, according to Zalando, it’s the 3rd most elegant city in the world. It lost some points due to their lower number of fashion weeks, expos and designers who have resided in the city.
You can find international luxury brands in the centre of the city, for example at Tuchlauben — a shopping area that is part of the Goldenes Quartier. For local designer garments, make your way towards Neubaugasse and Kirchengasse. Vienna is also home to the famous Lindengasse fashion mile, a street of small boutiques offering stylish fashion in the form of independent brands, making a lot of the items found here unique.
Return flight: From £53*
Mid-range accommodation: £57-93
2. London, England
Home to the Queen, some of the biggest designers in the world and our capital, it comes with little surprise that London has made the top cut.
If you’re looking for quirky bars and restaurants to enjoy, London has it all. From enjoying a panoramic view of the city at The Shard to heading to smaller cocktail bars such as the award-winning Dirty Martini in Islington, London has something for everyone.
And, when it comes to the finer things in life surely the first place that springs to mind is Chelsea (or is that because I am a recent Made In Chelsea TV show convert?) which is home to the iconic Harrods. Seven floors and 330 departments dedicated to the only-the-best products in food, fashion, homeware and more. For outdoor browsing, head over to Bond Street for exclusive brands, designer fashion or Mayfair for luxurious goods and super exclusive, world famous and mouth-watering restaurants.
Return flight: N/A
Mid-range accommodation: £100-200
1. Paris, France
Zalando ranked Paris as the number 1 fashionable destination due to its high perception from fashion journalists and the number of events, expos and more that the city has been host to, none more famous than Paris Fashion Week. Paris is lined with trendy neighbourhoods, including Montmartre, an area with a rich history and culture tucked away on a hill in the north of the city.
Considered to be the city of love, a walk along the Seine or a visit to The Louvre will leave you in no doubt that you are in Paris. If you’re looking for one-of-a-kind boutiques, head over to the famous Champs-Élysées which stretches from the place de la Concorde to the Arc de Triomphe. To get the full Parisian experience, head to rue Saint-Honoré which boasts the perfect balance of classic designers and Parisian concept stores, the ideal place to pick up something special for yourself.
Return flight: £54
Mid-range accommodation: £115-220
*Based on flights to and from the UK, the cheapest month and for the cheapest duration.
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Sources & Further Reading