Regarding places to shop in Florida, the venue list borders on completely overwhelming. There are a few scenes however, that stand out. First time visitors will definitely want to consider bumping these Florida shopping experiences to the top of their travel itinerary.
Miami’s Lincoln Road
This South Beach shopping strip in Miami Beach is full of all the glitz and glamour you’d expect. We’re talking bling, bling, Baby! So pack your credit card in order to be completely prepared to stroll and search for that extra little bit of accessory frosting, a new Mac Book Pro and the skimpiest swimwear money can buy. They also have great ice cream shops, fashion boutiques and even a gourmet pet bakery for Fifi.
Orlando’s Mall at Millenia
This venue is impressive indeed. Sunshine Davis, founder of SunshineStateShopping.com, agrees and regularly brings her friends to the Millenia Mall when they first arrive in her neck of the woods. “I call it the temple of shopping,” Davis notes, “because it’s such an inspiring and upscale atmosphere, and is so different from the crowded theme park experiences that visitors associate with Orlando.” Davis says her favorite thing about Millenia is that it has something for everyone. One side of the mall is chock full of luxury brands like Cartier, Chanel, Tiffany, Gucci, Louis Vuitton, and Neiman Marcus. The ever-changing window displays are a great source of fashion inspiration. The other side of Millenia Mall holds a great choice of mall staples like an Apple Store, Zara, Urban Outfitters, Express, Ann Taylor, and Coach. This mall is the epicenter of fashion for Orlando, hosting Fashion Week, fashion shows, trunk shows, and other fun events all year round. It’s also a fabulous spot for celebrity spotting.
St. Augustine Outlets
If you’re booking a vacation getaway to the historic, Spanish-themed town of St. Augustine and want to include a little shopping, then consider a side trip to the St. Augustine Outlets. With brands such as Gucci, Coldwater Creek, Hugo Boss and more, your credit card will be smoking by mid afternoon at the latest. Stores like Talbots, Wilsons Leather, Perfumania, Nautica and Zales are also present. The St. Augustine Outlets serve the Jacksonville and Daytona Beach communities and are located conveniently off Interstate 95. More than 75 authentic brands are represented at the venue.
St. Armand’s Circle in Sarasota
While Sarasota and her islands are all about beach time and cultural experiences, the destination isn’t without a sensational shopping scene. St. Armand’s Circle, the premier shopping destination in the Sarasota area offers a full range of retail options for discriminating shoppers. When you’re ready for a bit of break, get off your feet with a relaxing lunch at the Columbia restaurant, known for its 1905 salad, award-winning Cubano and a noteworthy Spanish wine collection.
Fort Lauderdale’s Las Olas Boulevard
Compared by many to Beverly Hills’ Rodeo Drive, Fort Lauderdale’s Las Olas Boulevard is one of the must-experience shopping venues for visitors to the Sunshine State. With a high-end beachy vibe this is definitely a shopping strip for the grownups. Break up your trips to Chico’s and your favorite jewelry shop with a break at one of the boulevard’s premier restaurants or bars. This is fairly fancy scene, so be sure to bring plenty of cash.
While it’s safe to say that shopping fans will find plenty to be pleased about during any visit to the Sunshine State, these Florida shopping experiences represent some of the premier experiences in the area.
|Myscha Theriault is a syndicated columnist for McClatchy-Tribune, best-selling author, and professional blogger whose work has been featured by Forbes, MSN, the Los Angeles Times, Boston Herald, AOL, and others. Print interviews include Better Homes and Gardens, Women’s World, and All You Magazines. She is the founder of Trekhound.com, a web site for independent travelers. You can also catch up with her on Twitter.|
Originally Published on March 21st, 2012