It’s got the beaches, it’s got the restaurants, it’s got the nightlife and it’s got the weather. But that’s not all Sydney has to offer – it is also a premier shopping destination as well. The city’s retail sector has a diverse range of shops and emporia, with everything from international labels and classy home wares to local designers and unique trinkets. And with cheap flights to Sydney available across a range of airlines, it’s becoming easier than ever before to travel Down Under to check them out for yourself.
Bondi Beach is a mecca for the beautiful people – and the wannabe beautiful people – Tuchuzy offers the threads that will work for everyone. Mixing classic cut basics with more cutting edge designs, you can find big hitters like Chloe, Givenchy and Helmut Lang nestling alongside local designers just starting to make their mark.
Not one for those on a budget, but Attic offers some of the chicest clothing designs around. Celine, PAUW and James Perse all have collections in store. The clothes tend to err on the minimalist rather than the exuberant, but they are exquisitely made. Situated in the Woollahra district, Attic also has a sister store, Arida, in Potts Point that features more high-end designers, including Stella McCartney and Lanvin.
Orson and Blake
If its classy home wares you are after, a good place to start is Orson and Blake. They collect an eclectic array of items from across the globe – everything from African stools to Japanese fabrics and Scandinavian bowls. With two outlets, in Crows Nest and Supa Centre, it’s a difficult task not to be seduced by something in this treasure trove of a store.
Located in one of Sydney’s most iconic shopping locations, the Strand, Dinosaur Designs is a must-see for jewellery fans. Offering its own designs that take their inspiration for nature and the inimitable Australian landscape, the creative couple behind the shop have also branched out into furniture with unique chairs and tables cast in resin nestling in a space that feels part shop, part art gallery. Also, pop next door to The Corner Shop for hip clothes and bags from up and coming international and Australian designers.
Nestled in Elizabeth Bay, Blood Orange is a very chic experience. Exposed brick walls with discreet displays of cool basics and a smattering of top-end designs. Home to Parisian label du jour, APC as well as items from Alexander Wand and sandals from K Jacques, a jaunt to this leafy suburb is worth it for Blood Orange alone.
Ksubi is hip. Famed for its awesome denim collection, cool sunglasses and unique, edgy designs, it caters to a younger crowd drawn to its vibrant Rosebery store. Their extensive core collection is regularly augmented by its Kustom pieces, limited edition runs by local designers, so its always worth popping in to see what’s currently gracing the racks.
Red Eye Records
You’ve got your new outfit, perhaps something to decorate your home and a stunning piece of jewellery, so what next? What better way to end your Sydney shopping outing than a trip to an institution – Red Eye Records. A cornucopia of new CDs, old vinyl and band merchandise, if you can’t find something worth listening to here, it’s probably not worth listening to.
Whether you are looking for the perfect present for that special someone, browsing for inspiration or simply looking to indulge yourself, Sydney’s shopping scene has something for everyone.
John Peters is a globetrotting freelance writer.