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World Travel Guide > Guides > South America > Brazil > Sao Paulo

Sao Paulo Weather

29°C

Local time Sao Paulo

Currency

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Shopping in Sao Paulo

Shopping in São Paulo is chic and sophisticated with plenty of luxury shopping malls and trendy markets on the weekends.

Key areas

Deluxe international brands have confirmed Rua Oscar Freire as one of the 10 most expensive shopping streets in the world and its 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 jewellery, fabrics, and handicrafts.

Markets

Two fun weekend markets include the 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.

For fresh produce and snack stands, don't miss 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. Food stalls dole out mortadella sandwiches, cold beer and meat and cheese filled pastels (deep fried pie). It's open daily between 0600 and 1800 and may close earlier on Sundays.

Shopping centres

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 comparison 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, Avenida Dr. Chucri Zaidan 902, offering more than 600 shops and dozens of restaurants.

Opening hours

Typical hours for stores in São Paulo are Monday-Friday 0600-1800, Saturdays 0900-1300 and Sunday 0600-1600. Shopping Malls usually open every day 1000-2200 but times vary on Sundays.

Souvenirs

You can buy just about anything you want in the city from traditional Amazonian arts and crafts to exclusive designer fashions by Brazilian and European designers. Other worthwhile souvenirs include Brazilian football gear, colourful Havaianas flip flops and cachaça, a distilled spirit made from sugarcane.

Tax information

The standard rate of sales tax is 18%. There is no tax refund scheme in Brazil.

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Grand Hyatt

Only in the moderately priced bracket if booked in advance because this is a luxurious residence bearing the hallmarks of quality expected from a Grand Hyatt. Located in the Pinheiros financial district it has all the amenities you could wish for including high speed internet a choice of bars and restaurants 466 rooms and suites and an exemplary spa. The Wine Library bar offers guests a giddying choice of 2 500 bottles. Breakfast included.

Hotel Excelsior

This 198-room hotel in São Paulo with its mammoth convention centre flatters beyond its 4-star billing. The rooms behind Excelsior's art-deco frontage are plain and businesslike yet excellent value. Wi-Fi is free rooms come with LCD TVs and there is a bar and fitness centre onsite. The location is also close by downtown Praça da República with nearby cultural icons such as Teatro Municipal and Edificio Copan. Staff speak English and can help book tickets and tours. Breakfast included.

Hotel Unique

Like a stranded copper-green Noah's ark, renowned architect Ruy Ohtake's fantasy creation is the pinnacle of imaginative design. Every inch of this boutique São Paulo hotel near Ibarepuera Park is surreal. Rooms with arched wooden floors reflect the hotel's curvature, and furnishings are sci-fi chic. A blood-red swimming pool on the rooftop tops off this extraordinary architectural adventure.

Fasano

This hotel's ethos is opulent familiarity, hence why new arrivals are greeted by an inviting sunken lounge bar of plump leather sofas, with reception concealed within a Babylonian brickwork interior. The theme of easy decadence flows into the rooms with lots of wood and timeless leather furnishing. The Italian cuisine within the sparklingly lit Fasano Restaurant, under chef Salvatore Loi's direction, is one of São Paulo's finest. Naomi Campbell and Yoko Ono are among illustrious past clients.

L'Hotel Porto Bay São Paulo

Popular with business clientele yet conveniently enough located off Avenida Paulista to crack the leisure market. The 76 rooms of this Portuguese chain offer ample comfort for those on the move with iPod docking stations and Wi-Fi. With a beautiful falling staircase and striking artworks on the wall, this hotel oozes grandeur, yet comes at a reasonable price.

Staybridge Suites

This modern skyscraper offers good rates for travellers in the thriving commercial district of Itaim Bibi with fabulous vistas towards Moema district from the corporate top floor rooms. The Staybridge is also conveniently incorporated into an open mall with a cinema gym and restaurants so there's no need to risk life and limb crossing busy surrounding roads to go out.