Stores, Malls or Markets in Moscow

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  • jlanza29's Profile Photo

    Pleasant to walk: Arbat Street

    by jlanza29 Written Nov 8, 2010

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    In all the tour books such as Frommers, Fodor's and Lonely Planet describe this street as a big tourist trap that sell overpriced items and tourist trap restaurants, but I happen to find this street nice to walk around and browse the souvenirs shops. We ended up buying some items, stores will bargain the items so make up your mind on what you want to pay for an item and bargain. Prices for postcards were 15 rubles and fridge magnets were about 80 to 100 rubles each. And for those looking for Hard Rock Cafe, it's on the west side of Arbat street.

    Shops and restaurants up and down Arbat St

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  • dlandt's Profile Photo

    Gastronom Kontinental: Western style grocery store chain

    by dlandt Updated Mar 17, 2009

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    This chain of grocery stores is similar to any you would find in North Amerika or Western Europa. Their standards of cleanliness and hygiene appear comparable and imported foods line the shelves. Products are neatly placed and categorized in standard fashion and they have modern scanners.

    What to buy: Fresh meat and vegetables, sundries, beer, soft drinks, spirits, coffee, tea, cereals, bread, deli goods, whatever you normally buy in a grocery store. They even have electronic bar code readers linked to a central database.

    What to pay: I paid what I think would be about 110% of what I normally pay in Chicago, less than Seattle, more than Warsaw, generally a little more than most other places.

    Gastronom

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  • Santini738's Profile Photo

    GUM

    by Santini738 Written Aug 23, 2007

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    State Universal Store or GUM is a common name for the main department store in many cities of the Soviet Union and some post-Soviet states. The most famous GUM is a large store in Kitai-gorod of Moscow, facing Red Square.It is actually a shopping mall. Prior to the 1920s the place was known as the Upper Trading Rows.

    With the façade extending for 242 meters along the eastern side of Red Square, the Upper Trading Rows were built between 1890 and 1893 by Alexander Pomerantsev (responsible for architecture) and Vladimir Shukhov (responsible for engineering). The trapezoidal building features an interesting combination of elements of Russian medieval architecture and a steel framework and glass roof, a similar style to the great Victorian train stations of London. Nearby, also facing Red Square, is a very similar building, formerly known as the Middle Trading Rows.
    Inside the GUM, elongated shop galleries are bridged with innovative metal-and-glass vaults, designed by Vladimir Shukhov.
    Inside the GUM, elongated shop galleries are bridged with innovative metal-and-glass vaults, designed by Vladimir Shukhov.

    The existing structure — defined by William Craft Brumfield as "a tribute both to Shukhov's design and to the technical proficiency of Russian architecture toward the end of the 19th century" — was built to replace the previous trading rows that had burnt down in 1825. The glass-roof designed makes the building unique. The roof, whose diameter is 14 meters, looks light, but it is a firm construction made of over 50,000 pods (about 819 tons) of metal. Illumination is provided by huge arched skylights of iron and glass, each weighing some 820 tons and containing in excess of 20,000 panes of glass. By the time of the Russian Revolution of 1917, the building contained some 1,200 stores. The facade is split into several horizontal tiers, lined with red Finnish granite, Tarusa marble, and limestone. Each arcade is on three levels, linked by walkways of reinforced concrete.

    What to buy: Everything :))

    GUM GUM inside GUM inside GUM inside
    Related to:
    • Architecture
    • Historical Travel

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  • mwe's Profile Photo

    GUM.: Moscow's famous department store.

    by mwe Written Feb 13, 2007

    The GUM department store takes up most of one side of Red Square, but you may not realise it, as it's simply a big building with no huge signs, neon lights, etc..
    It's a strange combination of big and low-key!

    What to buy: Check the GUM website (link below). Click the "English" icon when the page comes up if you can't speak, or read Russian.
    Their website plays stirring patriotic music, so if you have sound, turn your speakers up!

    GUM department store, disguised as a huge building

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  • jorgejuansanchez's Profile Photo

    Dom Knigi: books

    by jorgejuansanchez Written Dec 22, 2006

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    In the URSS times the House of Books (Dom Knigi) was number one in foreign language books. Now there are many other shops but this one is still the best.
    On the ground floor they have books in Russians and many souvenirs (matrioshl\kas, shapkas with the sign CCCP, etc), but on the first floor (second for the Russians) you have sectors with Spanish, English and French books at very good prices.

    What to buy: books

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  • jorgejuansanchez's Profile Photo

    Jean Jacques: Vin, epicerie, pain...

    by jorgejuansanchez Written Dec 22, 2006

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    This is a French store for the nostalgic of western European products where you can buy French cheese (Caprice des Dieux), good pates or Bordeaux wines at moderated good prices.
    They also sell Spanish wines. It is a place frequented by foreigners and Europeans alike.
    I go sometimes to buy some French delicatessen when I am tired to eat every day Russian kapusta.

    What to buy: Vin, epicerie, pain...

    Related to:
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    • Historical Travel

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  • jorgejuansanchez's Profile Photo

    Armenia: Armenian delicatessens

    by jorgejuansanchez Written Dec 22, 2006

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    This shop is very well known since the Soviet Union times.
    They sell all kind of Armenian and Georgian delicatessens, although I went yesterday and did not find Georgina wines because they are, for the time being, forbidden.
    I bought basturma, a sort of Armenian Jamon. They also sell cognac Ararat.
    Apart from food and wines, they offer music, videos and DVD related with Armenia.
    The old Christian chants from the XII century are a wonder. I have this tape at home.
    The shop is located in the corner with Pushkin Square.

    What to buy: Armenian delicatessens

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  • TheWanderingCamel's Profile Photo

    GUM: Have times changed!!!

    by TheWanderingCamel Updated Oct 8, 2006

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    Looking at it now, you would never believe how grim GUM (the State Department Store)once was. Dingy, dismal, drab with little on the shelves, unhelpful staff - not a place to linger in. It's actually not a single store at all, a shopping mall is a better description, a lovely glass-roofed Belle Epoque structure with hundreds of small shops on three floors. Now its arcades are lined with elegant shops selling top labels from Russia and abroad. Smart snack bars in the centre aisle serve cappucinos and delicious cakes and gay pink umbrellas shade the tables on the top levels. Kiosks sell souvenirs, and bright banners hang along the sides. The place is thronged with people, some indulging in serious retail therapy, others window shopping. About the only reminders of the old GUM are the icecream sellers - and the loos in the lowest level, where the old Russian way of stern ladies overseeing things (and dispensing loo paper) still holds sway.

    What to buy: You can buy just about anything in GUM, from a baboushka-shaped fridge magnet for a dollar to a Burberry raincoat or a Dior lipstick. The stuffed animal heads from the little shop at the southern end might cause some problems on the plane home and check with your country's customs if you're thinking of buying caviar - some of those that have signed the CITES Treaty for the protection of endangered species won't let you bring it home. If you are a shopaholic, this place will sorely tempt you.

    Shopping heaven

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  • tere1's Profile Photo

    "Matryoshkas"

    by tere1 Updated Sep 4, 2006

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    Russian nesting doll or matryoshka as it is sounded in Russian - is probably, the most popular Russian national souvenir. No one leaves Russia without having bought matryoskas!

    Here is a bit of the history of the "matryoshkas" :

    The first Russian nesting doll (matryoshka) was born in 1890 in the workshop "Children's Education" situated in Abramtsevo estate new Moscow.

    Russian wooden dolls within smaller dolls were called matryoshka. In old Russian among peasants the name Matryona or Matriosha was a very popular female name. Scholars says this name has a Latin root "mater" and means "Mother". This name was associated with the image of of a mother of a big peasant family who was very healthy and had a portly figure.

    Subsequently, it became a symbolic name and was used specially to image brightly painted wooden figurines made in a such way that they could taken apart to reveal smaller dolls fitting inside one another.

    painting the dolls Matryoshkas Matryoshkas

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  • aukahkay's Profile Photo

    Okhotny Ryad: Upmarket underground shopping mall near Red Square

    by aukahkay Written Jul 7, 2006

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Okhotny Ryad is an underground shopping mall on the north side of the Red Square in front of the State History Museum. Built in 1990, this departmental store is 3 levels under ground level. The most striking feature is a huge glass dome with the map of the world.

    What to buy: The imported branded designer labels are expensive. There is a huge food court at the basement level with a wide variety of food and drinks. I would recommend chilling out at this food court after touring the Kremlin

    The glass dome of Okhotny Ryad Okhotny Ryad Okhotny Ryad Okhotny Ryad
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  • xaver's Profile Photo

    Artshop: Matrioskas and flags

    by xaver Written May 6, 2006

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    Actulally the best place to get opriginal souvenirs is the Vernisazh market that takes place during week ends in the park Izmaylovsky.
    But if, like me, you cannot go during week end, a good alternative is Arbat street, the old Arbat is simply full of souvenirs shops and street vendors selling matrioskas, old URSS flags, hats and so on.
    In the street shopping is also a pleasure for the many street artists performing.
    The best shop I found in the street is: Artshop Arbat street 12 opened saily 9.30 untill 20.30.

    What to buy: Matrisokas, postcards, and many more local crafts.

    matrioskas
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  • TheWanderingCamel's Profile Photo

    Vernisazh market: Carpets and rugs

    by TheWanderingCamel Updated Mar 27, 2006

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Make your way right through to the back of the Vernisazh market and up the stairs to where you will find an amazing world of colour. Simple open-air stalls are hung with huge carpets from Dagestan, Azerbayjan, Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan. Others lie folded in high piles. Rugs, saddlebags, runners, kilims, and other pieces of every size and origin are there. Some dealers also have a few pieces of other ethnic textiles. We saw some very good, old carpets and were sorely tempted ( next time). The dealers are all from the Caucasus and Central Asia.

    What to buy: Shopping for carpets and rugs probably isn't something most visitors expect to do in Moscow, but this place is a real find for anyone who is interested, and the prices are very good. A huge carpet might pose a problem, though shipping can be arranged, but it is surprising to see just how neatly a small rug will fold and fit into a suitcase.

    What to pay: That depends entirely on the individual piece, but prices compared vary favourably with those we have seen, and paid, in Iran, Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan.

    Magic Carpets

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  • rw-bigfoot's Profile Photo

    Check internet for Russian gifts

    by rw-bigfoot Updated Oct 22, 2005

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    After returning home with Russian made gifts, I found that I hadn't purchased enough of the little nesting doll magnets that I bought for about 1.00us dollar in Voronezh. So I went to ebay and didn't find any but did find other exact items that I seen at gift shops in Russia. I did a google search for russian nesting doll magnets and found a great internet shop that had the exact items at almost the exact price just a few cents higher at Uniqueboxshop.com If I had know this I would have done all my shopping on line and not worried about shopping and packing items to bring back! They even had little wooden boxes that I wanted but knew would break on the return trip! So check out the internet if you forgot a gift for someone and want to shop for everything all in one place !

    What to pay: Almost the exact amount payed in Russia without having to shop for it or worry about carrying it packing it and breaking it on the trip home!

    Russian Nesting Doll Magnet cost about 1.00us

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  • sue_stone's Profile Photo

    Okhotny Ryad Shopping Mall: Okhotny Ryad Shopping Mall

    by sue_stone Written Sep 18, 2005

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    On the other side of the State Historical Museum (away from Red Square) is the large underground Okhotny Ryad Shopping Mall.

    At ground level there are some domes, fountains and sculptures. Below ground there are 3 levels of shops, with the usual range of goods, plus an internet café and also a sizeable food hall.

    There are also further food outlets on the outside edge, with plenty of outdoors seating perfect for people watching in the summer.

    the hidden entrance to the mall
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  • xxgirasolexx's Profile Photo

    GUM!: Gosudarstveny universalny magazine

    by xxgirasolexx Written Jul 26, 2005

    Before the revolution, this was THE SHOPPING PLACE. My friends in Russia told me that people used to come all the way from Ukraine to buy salami here. Apparently there used to be more than 1,000 shops selling everything from luxury furs to potatoes. These days, this is where Louis Vuitton, Christian Dior, Lancome, Benetton, Estee Lauder, and Burberry hang out.

    What to buy: Luxury gift items can be found here

    Inside GUM!
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    • Luxury Travel
    • Business Travel

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