Europe shopping

Jul 11th, 2001, 02:04 PM
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Europe shopping

We are traveling to Belgium, Luxembourg, Dusseldorf and Holland. What and where are the best things to buy in each country? Where is the best place to buy chocolates? What is the best gift you brought from those places?
Thanks in advance
Jul 11th, 2001, 02:30 PM
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Belgium: chocolates (Leonid and Godiva, then a couple of shops along the way); collar with handmade lace trim (the handmade stuff is VERY expensive, hence just the trim); earrings (still have the ones I bought 32 years ago)
Holland: little carved wooden shoe with a hole drilled lengthwise for a scarf ring; wooden Christmas ornaments; embroidered ribbons. When I was a kid, my grandmother brought back dolls and my all time favorite: a traditional outfit, complete with cute hat, that was just the perfect size for a six year old.
Jul 11th, 2001, 10:24 PM
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I love Neuhaus chocolate -- truffles and pralines. Breaks the bank, though...

Lace trimmed handkerchiefs in Brugges -- the lace center there (go thru the museum too, it's small and the work is incredible -- if you do needlework, you will appreciate it so much more.) The hankies were about $30, I think, and the work is hand done (no machine stuff).

Ran the price gauntlet in Holland -- I brought back kitchy ceramic shoes with bulbs in them and "real" Delft.

Jul 13th, 2001, 08:09 AM
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To the top.
Jul 13th, 2001, 01:13 PM
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In Belgium: It's not all chocolates, beer and lace! Shopping in Antwerp is about as cutting edge for fashion, housewares and jewelry as you'll find anywhere in Europe. But if you do decide to go the chocolate and lace route, Neuhaus is the preferred brand among Belgians as gifts, along with "boutique" chocolate shops like Pierre Marcolini and Wittamer. Leonidas is a funny one--it's a chocolate brand many Belgiums prefer and buy for themselves, but it's not supposed to be offered as a gift, at least not to other Belgians. Just something to keep in mind. Godiva, in catering to its growing export market, has added a little more sugar to its products than competitor Neuhaus (maybe that's why I like Godiva better...). With lace, if it's cheap, it's more than likely made in China. Real Belgian lace will cost more and should have some kind of certificate of authenticity. Other gifts include gnomes (there are some really funky ones out there), Art Nouveau items, both original and repro (remember, Brussels was one of THE places for Art Nouveau; even those fancy Art Nouveau entrances to the Paris metro were designed by a Belgian), vintage posters and postcards (cheaper than their French counterparts) and antique porcelaine.
The Hunkemoller stores found in Holland and Belgium (also Berlin) sell great women's pajamas and underwear. Comfortable, stylish, moderately priced and long lasting.
In Germany, I would buy WMF brand cookware or German cutlery. Also bedlinens. I actually prefer German and Austrian bedlinens to their French competition. Thomas brand dinnerware is inexpensive and contemporary.
BTilke (Brussels)
Jul 13th, 2001, 02:17 PM
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Thank you for the information.
What is the best shopping area in Belguim ?
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