Shopping in Sao Paulo
Retail therapy in São Paulo is chic and sophisticated with luxury designer goods more in evidence than handicrafts. There’s a growing trend for shopping malls yet bric-a-brac outdoors markets appear during weekends.
Don’t be surprised to see a Lamborghini cruising by São Paulo’s über-exclusive designer shopping streets running south off Avenida Paulista. Deluxe international brands confirm Oscar Freire as one of the 10 most expensive shopping streets in the world; the opulence continues into Haddock Lobo and Bela Cintra streets. For an earthier experience less intimidating on one’s wallet, Rua 25 de Marco in Centro is a lively outdoors shopping area trading jewelry, fabrics, and handicrafts.
Also check out Rua José Paulino and Brás neighborhood for bargain clothing; Liberdade neigborhood for cosmetics and Asian products; Rua Santa Ifigênia for electronic equipment; Rua Cardeal Arcoverde, Pinheiros for antiques and Rua do Arouche, República for leather goods.
Two fun weekend markets include the oriental-themed handicrafts of Praça da Liberdade on Saturdays and Sundays and Praça Benedicto Calixto’s Saturday flea market in the Bohemian district of Vila Madalena. The latter has live samba music. There’s also an inviting produce market on Thursdays in front of Pacaembu football stadium.
Alternaticely, browse an array of fresh produce and savour the buzz inside the vibrant indoor market of Mercado Municipal. This baroque-style building was constructed in the early 1930s and is illuminated by some fifty coloured stained-glass windows. It houses the freshest of São Paulo’s natural ingredients on the lower floor: from cheeses and meats to spices and chillies. Crowded restaurants serve market delicacies on both floors. It's open daily between 6am and 6pm may close earlier Sundays.
Significant shopping malls include the long-established Iguatemi, Avenida Brig. Faria Lima 2232, and the more luxurious Cidade Jardim, Avenida Magalhães de Castro 12000, which includes diamond retailers Tiffany & Co. Both pale in significance compared to Daslu, Avenida Chedid Jafet 131: a haunt for nouveau riche and fashionistas’ enjoying designer Brazilian outlets such as Osklen. There’s also Morumbi/Market Place offering than 600 shops and dozens of restaurants.
Typical hours for stores in São Paulo are Monday-Saturday 0900-1800 and closed Sunday. Shopping Malls usually open every day 1000-2200 but times vary on Sundays.
You can buy just about anything you want in the city from traditional arts and crafts made by the indigenous people of the Amazon to exclusive designer fashions by European and home grown designers. In addition, homeware is amazing and why not bring back home a bottle of potent pinga or cachaça, a distilled sugarcane drink popular in Brazil.