Well, it's official. I have a new favorite city for shopping – Naples! I recently had a chance to visit southwest Florida for the first time, and I discovered that this beautiful region is truly a shopper's paradise. In Naples alone, there are five major shopping areas within minutes of each other, each with it's own unique attributes, plenty of ambience and tons of stores just waiting to be shopped. Here is your guide to shopping in Naples:
- 5th Avenue South - This gorgeous, outdoor shopping area is a slice of Old Florida that's full of unique boutiques and restaurants and sprinkled with some of your favorite national retailers like Chico's and White House Black Market.
- Third Street South - Located less than a mile away from 5th Avenue (although not quite walking distance) is a similar shopping area with even more boutiques to love, along with favorites like Tommy Bahama. These two shopping areas are heavy on the ambience and are the perfect "unique" shopping experience if you are in Naples on a beach vacation and looking for a place to take a relaxing stroll. (There are also tons of joggers in this area!)
- Waterside Shops - Waterside has all the usual retailers, but is far from being a "regular" mall. It is a unique blend of the usual retailers (like Nordstrom and LOFT) and the gorgeous, outdoor shopping that Florida is well known for in a lush, tropical setting.
- Coastland Center - On a budget? You'll want to head to Coastland Center, an indoor mall full of budget friendly shopping with all your favorites. You'll also want to hit up TJ Maxx/Marshall's across the street.
- Mercato - Mercato is a really cute outdoor area full of hard-to-find national retailers like Charming Charlie and Z. Gallerie, plus hip boutiques and local clothing stores.
Where to eat: If you want a slower pace and a unique, local dining experience, head to Fifth Avenue South or Third Street South. If you want something a little more hip but with plenty of tropical ambiance, head to Waterside Shops for Brio or BrickTop. Or hit up the great dining at Mercato, where you'll find Blue Martini and Capitol Grille.
Where to stay: I stayed at the Hilton Naples and highly recommend it for its outstanding customer service, close proximity to shopping and great restaurant.