Toronto

Toronto prides itself on having some of the finest shopping in North America. Indeed, most of the world's name boutiques have branches here, especially in the Yorkville area, where you can find such luxury labels as Chanel, Prada, and Cartier. For those a little leaner of wallet, you can join in one of Torontonians' favorite pastimes: bargain hunting. Locals wear discount threads like badges of honor and stretch their dollar at Winners—where overstocked and liquidated designer pieces and last-season fashions are slashed to a fraction of their original retail prices.

Toronto has a large arts-and-crafts community, with numerous art galleries, custom jewelers, clothing designers, and artisans. Sophisticated glass sculpture and Inuit art are ideal as gifts or for your own home. A few record stores are still going strong despite the dominance of digital music. The survivors’ trump card has been focused inventory and knowledgeable staff—head to Rotate This for alterative and indie music or Atelier Grigorian for classical and jazz. Bookstores such as Indigo have lounge areas where you can sip a coffee from the in-store café while perusing books by Canadian authors such as Alice Munro, Ann-Marie MacDonald, and Rohinton Mistry; don’t miss favorite independent Book City.

When it comes to department stores, all roads lead to Holt Renfrew on Bloor Street West, the epicenter of Toronto's designer shopping. A mere block east is the more mid-price department store The Bay. A second Bay can be found across from Eaton Centre, a sprawling shopping complex with multilevel parking in the heart of the city.

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  • 1. Courage My Love

    Kensington Market | Clothing

    The best and longest-running vintage store in Kensington Market is crammed with the coolest retro stuff, from sunglasses to sundresses, plus...Read More

  • 2. Kid Icarus

    Kensington Market | Specialty Stores

    At this old-school printing company, you'll find a range of very cool retro designs including band posters (Devo!) and event commemorations...Read More

  • 3. Bungalow

    Kensington Market | Household Items/Furniture

    Teak tables, chairs, and cabinets give this vintage shop the feel of a strangely cavernous 1970s bungalow. Organized racks are filled with Hawaiian...Read More

  • 4. Tom's Place

    Kensington Market | Clothing

    Find bargains aplenty on brand-name suits like Calvin Klein, Armani, and DKNY. Tom Mihalik, the store's owner, keeps his prices low and carries...Read More

  • 5. This Ain't the Rosedale Library

    Kensington Market | Books/Stationery

    In addition to stocking nonmainstream magazines and books, the store also offers a wide range of progressive nonfiction and works by local authors. ...Read More

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