If you want to shop til you drop there's no better place than Melbourne!
Last week Style Blog managed to escape the dreaded ash cloud from the Chilean volcano and made it over to Melbourne for a spot of retail therapy!
When you visit Victoria's capital city during winter, you certainly need to wrap up warmly. The icy southern wind is a bone chiller! Take a tip from stylish Melburnians who know a thing or two about the art of layering and the importance of a having a great, winter coat!
The first stop for us was of course the recently opened Zara store on Bourke Street Mall. Originally from Spain, chain store Zara has taken over the world. Zara has stores in many countries and now Australia has one in Sydney and one in Melbourne. Apparently, the Zara store in Melbourne is currently the most successful Zara store ever!
Zara offers well-made high street fashion at a really affordable price.
You have to have a bit of a chuckle to yourself when it's 9am in the morning and you're queuing to get into a chain store! Only a set number of people are allowed into the store at one time and security guards roam around like bouncers. With the loud house music pumping, we felt like we were in some kind of crazy nightclub!
The queues to the changing rooms were ridiculously long and the method of shopping here is to simply just grab and buy! Zara's not just for women. There's also Zara man and Zara kids.
Zara is all about colour, colour, colour! Right now it's summer time in Europe and everyone is wearing loads of fabulous colour. It's so refreshing to see! Just like us Kiwis, Melburnians love to wear loads of black. It must be the climate!
Melbourne's CBD shopping area is based around a shopper's paradise: Bourke Street Mall.
David Jones (D.J's) is a must-go-to department store. It's great to have everything under one roof. The womenwear designer floor is always worth a look at as is the menswear department.
Most importantly, we love the shoe floor. It was sale time and a pair of high, strappy snakeskin Jimmy Choo's were on sale for $400!
When you are all shopped out, head for David Jones Food hall where you can a bite to eat washed down with a delicious glass of bubbly.
Another place you need to visit is GPO, the old General Post Office. It's a beautifully restored old heritage building and it's packed with great Aussie designers such as Lisa Ho, Akira and Zimmermann to name but a few.
Collins Street is where all the international Chanel, Gucci and Louis Vuitton designers have their boutiques. Here you will find etc..
Opposite Chanel is an amazing shoe; bag and accessory store: Miss Louise. It stocks incredible creations including Alexander McQueen, Balenciaga, Balmain and Yves Saint Laurent.
Little Collins Street is another great place to shop. You'll even find our very own Zambesi in amongst all the other seriously cool stores.
If you're not already exhausted from shopping, hop on a tram to South Yarra.
Toorak Road; the Prahran area incorporating Chapel Street and High Street are the places where the wealthy love to shop. Trelise Cooper is here, along with Scanlan and the Theodore (a Melbourne fashion institution), Collette Dinnigan and many more.
If you're into slightly cooler and more bohemian finds, check out Greville Street in South Yarra or go across town to quirky Brunswick Street in Fitzroy. This is the "alternative" area of the city where poets, musicians and artists love to congregate in the many uber-cool bars and cafes.
A cheap and cheerful place to eat around here is The Vegie Bar.
If giant shopping malls are your thing, you need to visit Chadstone, which they have dubbed: "The Fashion Capital". It really has everything you could ever want here.
After all this shopping, we certainly worked up an appetite! We
recommend dining at the seriously cool Izakaya Den on
Russell Street. Its amazing Japanese food with a twist.
Make sure you get in early though as they're always super busy!
Sometimes there's only so much shopping you can do before you start going insane! A great antidote for this is to check out a museum or an art gallery.
We enjoyed the unmissable Tutankhamen exhibition at the Melbourne Museum and also, the Viennese Art exhibition at the National Gallery of Victoria (NGV) with works by Gustave Klimt, Egon Schiele. There's really so much to do in Melbourne so make sure you plan your trip well and pack in as much as poss!
See you all next week!
xoxo Style Blog