Vendor's Mall: A Jumble of Goods
Vendor's Mall is a large wharehouse type building packed with stalls selling everything and anything you could want to buy. The stalls are packed tightly together so it's very hard at some spots to navigate through the maze of merchandise.
We often find that the best way to tackle shopping here is to come with an idea of what you want and tell the vendor specifics. If they don't have it at their stall; they often walk you to the vendor that carries what you are looking for. I also like that many of the vendors here will take you upstairs or across the street to one of the many print shops to get a custom tee shirts made for you. My wife and I always have taken advantage of this service during our three visits to St. John. The tee shirts are nice quality and there is a large selection of sizes, colors and designs to choose from.
Prices have gone up for these custom shirts over the years. Our last purchase was for 1 kids shirt, one men's shirt and two ladies with a price tag of $70. It is much cheaper than a resort or airport store but definitely pricier than the previous year.
The Boutique at Sandals: Beachwear, souvenirs and more
The Boutique at Sandals has every thing you might need while on a beach holiday from toilietries, medications, sunblock, bug repellent, bathingsuits, clothings, shoes, bags, magazines, local rum, candy, books and the usual array of souvenirs.
My wife loves to shop so I knew I was in trouble day one of the vacation.My wife is a saavy shopper; she knew there would be a sale later in the week according the the resort daily flyer so she scoped out what she wanted; waiting until their special sales during the week to snatch up her desired items at a reduced price. As Sandals Select Members we receive 10% off any purchase we make but having additional savings is always a bonus. We also received a coupon for 20% off as a bonus of being Butler Guests.
During the shoe sale she scooped up a pair of flip flops for herself and her friend Lydia that has interchangeable decorations for $42 a pair with a 15% off. During the bag sale she scored two beach bags at 25% off; one small one for $20 and an enormous one for $50. We picked up a shirt for little Robert which was the only non sale item at $21.99 for a small kids shirt. I also found a tee shirt I liked during their tee shirt sale and was $23; not bad.
Realize going in this is a resort; the prices will be very inflated for most items in particular toiletries and medicines. Bring your own sunblock and supplies so you won't get fleeced $10 for a toothbrush.
Airport Duty Free: Cheap Liquor and Last Minute Souvenirs
The Airport has duty free shops in case you have forgotten to pick up some jewelry, liquor, perfume or souvenirs for the folks at home. We picked up some Johnnie Walker Blue for a friend back home, some fridge magnets, a straw basket and a shot glass for one of Liz's friends. We also picked up a snack for the plane as I knew the food offering in business class ahead of time; and they were not that appetizing.
Red Lane Spa: Wonderful Spa Products
My wife and I love the spa products from Red Lane; in particular their suncare line. Our last visit we purchased some after sun lotion, body lotion and a papaya facial mist for my wife. The prices are comprable to any other store brand and have an incredible scent. Just this past year they have made the product line available for online purchase so we can have them sent to our house whenenever we run out of it.
The Liquor Store: Duty Free Liquor
The Liquor Store is just one of the many shops in St. John selling duty free liquor. The shop had a large selection of local Caribbean rum as well as international brands of liquor. Basically if you drink it they've got it here from inexpensive Vodka all the way up to pricey Scotch such as King George.
Knowing your prices is key to get a bargain as well as being able to haggle. The prices here in St. John were okay; we have found the best prices in the Caribbean so far to be St. Maarten.
What to buy: On our last visit we bought some local rum for a friend back home. English Harbour was our choice of rum and it was a good price at $7 for a nice sized bottle.
Sun Seakers: Swim and Beachwear
Sun Seakers is a large swim and resort wear store right in the heart of downtown St. John. My wife wanted to check out the store and its merchandise. The store is two levels with the regularly priced items on the main level and the sale/clearance items upstairs. They have a large selection of bathing suits, coverups, sundresses and flip flops. Some of my wife's favorite brands are displayed here and for reasonable prices to boot.
Nothing here caught my wife's eye though; she had very similar or exact swimsuits already but was glad to venture in for a look.
Diamonds International: Stop in and see Eddy
Diamonds International is a jewelry chain with locations throughout North America but focused primarily in the Caribbean. The store carries a variety of watches and jewelry for both men and women. This is the only Diamonds International store I like. Eddy here is a good friend of a friend and is very reptuable. He is fair with prices and shows the best merchandise for your price point. Definitely come see him when you are shopping in Antigua.
Abbott's Jewelry: Duty Free Shopping
Abbott's Jewelry is a good duty free shop right in the Heritage Quay shopping are; just a short five minute walk from the pier.
The shop has a variety of duty free items; jewelry, perfume, liquor, crystal and some fine china and porcelain items. During our visit I found a charming piece of LLadro that I fell in love with at first sight. I love LLadro and have several pieces at home that I adore. This piece in particular spoke to me. The figurine was of a Polynesian girl in a skirt, lei and holding several tropical flowers in her hands as she smelled their fragrance. It was very delicate and femine piece. The figurine was called Aroma of the Islands. I inquire to the price and was very surprise at the low figure but was told there was a sale on LLadro of 10% off. Still the price was very low and hard to pass up for such a lovely piece.
I informed a staff memeber I would like to purchase this piece and they hurried to the back to get the box. I inspected the box and the figurine to make sure both were intact and had all th official LLadro paperwork attached. All was in order so the purchase was made. We left satisfied with our purchase and I couldn't wait to take it home to my china cabinet.
**Upon returning home we looked up the figurine on the LLadro website. The figurine was listed as $660 and we paid $450. What a good bargain.**
Shipwreck is one of the many souvenir shops you'll find in St. John; in particular in Heritage Quay. The them of most of the souvenirs is Pirates; shirts, mugs, post cards, etc. There is also a large selection of just "Antigua" souvenirs.
My wife purchased some Christmas ornaments for her Motehr and mine; which were reasonably priced at $5 each.
Abbotts' Jewelry: Jewelry, Watches and More
Abbott's is a shop that carries just about anything you could be looking for: jewelry, crystal, porcelain, watches, perfume and other duty free items. My wife and I were shopping in the Heritage Quay area when we decided to stop in for a look.
My wife is a fan of Lladro and is always on the lookout for unique pieces to add to her collection. She found a beautiful Polynesian figure that she instantly loved. From the look on her face I knew this was a done deal. I inquired about the price and was surprised that the figure was so low. Apparently we came in at the right time; there was a 10% off sale on LLadro that week. So within ten minutes we were rung up, packed up and happy to have another addition for my wife's China cabinet at home.
Not the Duty-Free shops
We looked at a few of the duty-free shops but didn't buy anything in them. Instead we got some fun sun-dresses at one of the many vendor stalls nearby. They're located in a cluster of stalls where they do pounce upon you as you enter. Each vendor will want to sell you their wares and they all sell similar stuff.
Be brave and forge through!Related to:
- Arts and Culture
Nelson's Dockyard Gift Shop: Maps, Charts and Local Crafts
There is well stocked gift shop attached to the Dockyard Museum in the Naval Officer's House. I took some photos of items for sale, but am not sure whether the picture was of that store or of the other boutique type places that were there.
I also took a picture about the designing of a totem (photo 2) in this area.
What to buy: It carries old maps, plans and charts of Antigua as well as a quantity of local handicrafts.
Some of the items in stock are:-
* 18th century maps of Antigua
* The 1863 Admiralty chart of English Harbour
* Various prints of Antigua
* Hand carved fishes of Antigua
* Nautical and natural history books
* English Harbour printed china and mugs
* Special Tee-Shirts
* CardsRelated to:
- Arts and Culture
- Museum Visits
Caribbean Helicopters: Off the Shopping Track
Caribbean Helicopters has a little display at the heliport selling various items of clothing with their logo. This includes:
Contact them by mail at:
JH Box 170
What to buy: The only thing I bought was a DVD about MontserratRelated to:
- Adventure Travel
various: Shopping in Antigua
Visit the duty-free malls in St John's restored waterfront of Redcliffe Quay, which is excellent for local arts and crafts (palm-frond bowls, pottery, batik, woodcarvings), designer brands, fragrances (including frangipani perfume) and jewellery. More duty-free bargains such as island-aged rum, handicrafts and beachwear are available from Heritage Quay. It is only a short walk from the Quays to the centre of St Johns were there are numerous souvenier shops
What to buy: Take home passion-fruit soap, handmade jewellery, Antiguan rum and Susie's Hot Sauce.
Several outdoor market stalls: Shopping With a View!
On your way down to English Harbour, look out for the designated viewpoint set on top of a hill, just up a few steps. It may have a name but I don't recall it! It's got a great view down to the sea & then you can stop & buy a T shirt as a souvenir! We didn't intend to get one but the ladies were just so funny & friendly that we felt we should!
I think possibly the taxi drivers do some kind of a deal with these people as ours seemed quite keen for us to take a look! It was worth it for the laugh though!
What to buy: T shirts, local craft type souvenirs etc.
What to pay: Inexpensive - but haggle of course, they expect you to!Related to:
- Family Travel
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