Tired of spending your Saturdays wandering around Westfield? Jump on a plane and discover a realm of retail that will make holiday shopping your new favourite hobby.
Best for living out retail fantasies: New York City
A medley of consumer delights, the New York City shopping scene is full of endless possibilities. With the likes of world-famous department stores Macy’s and Bloomingdale’s used as a backdrop for many a blockbuster movie, tourists are simply in retail heaven from the designer stores on Manhattan’s 5th Avenue all the way to the flea markets for a bargain in Brooklyn. Looking for edgy, one-of-a-kind items on your New York holiday? Head to SoHo, one of the most popular shopping districts where you’ll discover hidden gems in exclusive boutiques as well as vintage antiques that you can’t get your hands on elsewhere. The shops in East Village, West Village and Times Square are also brilliant reasons why New York is one of the best destinations for holiday shopping. Be in the heart of the action with a stay at Paramount Hotel New York, a five-star location that promises a perfect base to embark on your retail adventures.
Best for markets and bargains: Hong Kong
Known as the Pearl of the Orient, Hong Kong is a foodie’s dream come true, a city-lover’s paradise and, of course, a holy grail for shopaholics. The hustle and bustle of Hong Kong is undoubtedly transpired into its shopping scene, with a plethora of lively markets found around every corner and larger-than-life department stores scattered throughout Causeway Bay. One of the city’s biggest attractions is Temple Street Night Market, an endless stretch of casual restaurants and lively market stalls selling everything under the sun. Authentic Chinese knick-knacks, not-so-authentic designer handbags, clothes, electrical items, souvenirs – you name it, Temple Street Night Market is where you’ll find it. Oh, and don’t forget to haggle! A vocal sparring match with the market stall vendor is half the excitement and will likely result in you getting a decent discount – but don’t push your luck. Some vendors won’t go below a certain price and might take offence if you pester them to go any lower. Besides being a superb destination for holiday shopping, Hong Kong is home to glorious hotels including Cordis Hong Kong which is surrounded by unique city shopping such as Mongkok Wet Market and the Flower Market.
Best for getting lost in a mall: Dubai
Dubai is the city where too much is never enough, where the sky isn’t the limit – it’s just the view. Everything in the glamour capital of the UAE is superlative and larger than life, even the shopping malls. Dubai is an on-trend city that has international trade at its core so expect nothing less than the world-famous Dubai Mall to stand proud as a retail pilgrimage for shopaholics visiting from every corner of the globe. The second largest mall in the world by total area and roughly the size of 50 football pitches, Dubai Mall goes way beyond your average Westfield with over 1,200 stores ranging from high-street favourites and designer classics, making it an ideal destination for holiday shopping. If you’re head over heels with the over-the-top nature, you’ll adore a stay at Atlantis, The Palm on your Dubai holiday. 64 times the size of Wembley stadium and home to 23 restaurants, an aquarium and a waterpark, trust me when I say this is the perfect place to unwind after a long day of credit card swiping.
Best for designer labels: Barcelona
Forget Gaudi – in Barcelona, it’s all about Gucci. The Spanish capital of all things glamour, this city has shopping for every budget, style and taste, but the place to be is undoubtedly the luxurious Passieg de Gracia. The highest grossing shopping street in Barcelona, this is an area that’s surrounded by not only designer store fronts but also world-class architecture including La Pedrera and Casa Batlló. Be spoiled for choice on your Barcelona holiday as you feast your eyes on Armani, Burberry, Jimmy Choo, Cartier, Dolce & Gabbana and so much more. Hotel Omm is a luxurious hotel in the centre of Passieg de Gracia; a stay here ensures peace, relaxation and close proximity to your brand-new wardrobe.
Best for A-List glamour: Los Angeles
Ever wondered where the likes of Kim Kardashian and Chrissy Teigen get their glad rags from? The palm tree-lined streets of Rodeo Drive and Beverly Hills is the glamourous side of town for a reason and it’s where you’ll find an extensive range of high-end stores to live out your California dreams to the fullest. From Tom Ford to Louis Vuitton, Los Angeles is designer heaven and the perfect destination for holiday shopping – oh, don’t forget to stop off at Chanel or Ray-Ban for a pair of cool shades because what’s strutting down Hollywood Boulevard without some fabulous sunglasses? If your arms are aching from the sheer weight of your shopping bags, a stay at W Los Angeles is just the ticket. Indulge in a relaxing treatment at the incredible spa and put on your new threads for a divine meal at NineThirty and I guarantee you’ll look and feel like a million dollars on your holiday to Los Angeles.