As-Souq al-Wataniya is another one of Kuwait's ubiquitous shopping malls. The difference with this one is that it is filled with Indian merchants who sell incredibly cheap and low-quality goods. Perhaps the only thing that you might consider purchasing here is textiles, as there are a number of stores that sell Indian fabrics and garments, which are always favourite souvenirs. Apart from that, this is not somewhere that you should plan on going to unless you need to recharge your cellphone. In fact, this is the only shopping mall in Kuwait where I was consistently stared at, which leads me to believe that it is quite uncommon for anyone but Indians and South Asians to frequent the stores here. That is ultimately quite ironic, as the name of the mall means National Mall.
What to buy: As I said earlier, the only thing you might come here to buy are fabrics or Indian garments.
What to pay: The lowest cost of any mall in Kuwait
Saahel al-Bahrain is definitely not what you would consider to be a premiere clothing store, but the staff here is quite friendly and they are always ready to help you choose the best-fitting dishdasha (Kuwaiti mens' robe). I don't know if any of them speak English, but given that most of the staff is Indian, I would imagine that the answer is yes. The basement entrance makes the store look rather small, but it is actually a massive store with aisles and aisles of dishdashas, ghutras and shomaghs (headscarves), 9oqals (headbands) and other accoutrement of Gulf dress.
What to buy: I bought a black dishdasha here. It's simple, but well made and comfortable. Don't shy away from being measured by the salesmen. They take your basic measurements (height, chest, shoulders) and it makes a world of difference to ensuring that the dishdasha fits correctly.
What to pay: Prices here are quite reasonable and bargaining is acceptable. I was able to get my dishdasha for KD5.5, or about $20, which is quite good considering that cheaper quality ones are sold in the market for KD7.
Marina Crescent is a sort of annex to Marina Mall. It's connected to the shopping centre by a bridge over Arabian Gulf Street and is right up against the marina for which the mall is named. The vast majority of stores here are restaurants and cafés, but I believe that there are a few other retailers. During the winter months you're able to sit outside on the patios and enjoy the nice weather and the views of the boats and the Gulf. I've been told that that's fairly impossible during the summer, when temperatures reach 50C. All of the restaurants here are American or British, so don't expect anything more than token Middle Eastern accents. Nevertheless, this place is more about the views and the attempts at Lebanese-style café culture. Enjoy it while the weather is good.
What to buy: Any type of American food.
What to pay: Food here is more expensive than you can pay on average in the country, but is fairly reasonable for Western outlets (KD1.5 for cappuccino or a latte).
Marina Mall is so named because across from the Mall, connected to it by a bridge over Arabian Gulf Street, is a large marina that opens out into the Arab Gulf. The Mall is not nearly as large as The Avenues, but it does feature all the same high-end stores and boutiques that you will find at the latter. Marina Mall has Hugo Boss, Givenchy, Massimo Dutti, Diesel as well as Zara and H&M. The Mall also has a Kuwaiti style food court, which is a large open patio (open concept, but still in the air conditioning) where you can find Paul, Le Nôtre and other faux-French cafés. There's not much to say about the malls in Kuwait except that they are the country's equivalent of café culture in the Mediterranean; people watching is done indoors rather than outdoors. Marina Mall occasionally has "exhibitions" in the bridge that connects it to Marina Crescent and the Gulf. I purchased Lebanese perfume at one of these booths; you can often find unique gifts here that you wouldn't otherwise be able to purchase.
What to buy: Anything and everything
What to pay: Standard prices set by international retailers, less sales tax.
Souq Sharq, despite its name, is just another one of Kuwait's many, many malls. Unlike The Avenues and Marina Mall, Souq Sharq is not packed with designer stores. This is the place to find low and mid-range Western good, as well as a few higher end items (mainly watches, perfumes and glasses). Souq Sharq also has Sultan Centre, which is a large grocery store that sells all the same Western products as Wegmans in the US. Despite the fact that this is one of Kuwait's "lesser" malls, it is still worth a visit, just because of its location. The front of Souq Sharq includes a marina, and the back side of the structure features a beautiful view out to the Gulf, complete with a corniche and plenty of spots to sit and watch the waves on a spring afternoon. It is also right next to the new Fish Market, where you can watch the fishing vessels come in and unload their catches.
What to buy: Pretty much anything you want.
What to pay: Again, Kuwait has no tax, so prices are standard less whatever the tax rate is in your home country.
The Avenues is not a shop, but the largest shopping mall in Kuwait. This massive pilgrimage site for shopaholics is not yet complete and still has two more phases to be completed. There are few (if any) luxury good stores that are not in the Avenues, where you can purchase Cuban cigars, Louis Vuitton bags, Cartier watches and Prada shoes after finishing off a French meal. It's also possible to find cheaper goods too, as Zara and H&M have outlets in this mall. So does IKEA, although you're unlikely to look to buy Swedish furniture unless you are living in Kuwait.
What to buy: Pretty much anything.
What to pay: Prices are standard and set by the retailers - you may find it cheaper, though, since Kuwait has no taxes.
This is a basic rundown of the malls in Kuwait. Designer Shopping here is great.
Salhiya Complex (Very Expensive): Here you can find the following designer boutiques: Chopard, Cartier, Valentino, Sergio Rossi, Bulgari, Rolex, Tods, Chanel, Dior, Versace, Louis Viutton, Christofle, Van Clef, Korloff, Aigner, Givenchy, Fendi, Graff, DiGrisgono, Tiffany, Dupont, Tumi, Lacoste, Piaget, Max Mara, Marina Renaldi, Kenzo, Alberta Feretti and Jimmy Choo. There are also lots of shops with mixed european designers. One who stands out is Al-Ostoura, however there is a vast array of shops selling all sorts of upmarket goods such as designer clothes and acessories, leathers, silverwear, and jewelry. Generally it is nothing but t he best so be prepared to spend a small fortune here. Food wise it is attached to th JW MArriot so you have direct access to their restaurants. Also, there is a Starbucks as well as two coffee shop/snacky type places- one on the ground fllor and one on mezzanine 2. A new addition to the mall (across the street) houses a Caribu Cafe-good coffee, Jhonny Rockets, Lorenzo (a restaurant with a modern Italian style menu), and Hashi (a fushion type Japanese restaurant-quite good).
What to buy: Good luck shoppin and have fun in Kuwait!
Last but not least I must mention Mariam Complex (Salem AlMubarak St, Salmiya). It is a hole in the wall of a mall, but damn they got some good clothes. On the ground floor there is the Guess Store and some really nice clothes shops. One side of the basement is Al-Othman, the home of Mathew Williamson in Kuwait. They also carry fantastic evening dresses by Temperly, Escasda, and Ellie Saab. One word: WOW. The other half of the basement is taken up by a store called "The Basement" which basically carries designer childrenswear. Here you can Find Mona Lisa, Guess, D&G, Kenzo, and Elle. They also carry a grand of healthy childerens shoes: Naturino.
Thorya Mall (Salem Al-Mubarak St, Salmiya)is a tiny little luxury mall which houses the shops of Alberta Feretti, Chloe, Roberto Cavalli, and Cacherel, amonst others. If you are into luxury shopping its worth a visit, but if you are on a budget give it a miss.
Zahra (Salem Al-Mubarak St, Salmiya)is worth mention. Its been around longer than me. Back in the 80's it was the best place to shop. Here you will find the La Perla boutique (great PJs and bathing suits), Why & a Half, I PInco Pollini Boutique (designer childrenswear.) There is also a fantastic and unique selection of european designer clothes and shoes (Comfort Shoe is great.) Here you will also find some nice jewelry shops.
Al-Fanar mall (Salem Al-Mubarak St, Salmiya)has my favourite movie theatre The seats are stadium style so noone's beehive get in your view. They also have Zara, Mango, B & O, MAC, Godiva, Tiffany, Gucci, River Island, Claire's to name a few of the shops. There is a great mix of variety. There is great steak place called Entrecote too. Al-Fanar is a bright building which is very well kept. Here you can also find Lenotre and Dalyou restaurants. However I like to go for the steak and the movies.
Malls to skip over: Al-Bustan, Laila Gallery, Galleria 2000, Central Paza(All on Salem Al-Mubarak St, Salmiya).
What to buy:
Marina Mall-ah Marina Mall...where do I start. Big stores are Virgin, Zara (with great home section,) H & M, Boots, River Island, Massimo Dutti, Limited Too, Athlete's Foot, Polo, Jade, Nyosho, Echo, Body shop, Boss, FCUK, Deisal, Footlocker, Ecco shoes, Hallmark, Harley Davidson, Aldo, Persona, Vavavoom, MAC, The place is huge- I could go on all day. There are loads of restaurants in the mall- A fun YO Sushi, Starbucks, Waterlemon, Paul, Lenotre, a food court with fast foods, Cinnobun, Yummy yummi Moreli's Gelato (try the Ferrero Roche flavour.) Game whizz is fun if you have teenagers, its an arcade.
There is a walkway over the Sea Road that leads you to a section called the cresent, which has loads of restaurants including KRISPTY CREME! A couple of my favs are Asha (modern Indian), Totally Fish, asn Pan Quotiuent ( I call it PQ cause I can not say or spell it. All their food is organic and delicious! If you are visiting kuwait no visit is complete without stopping off at the Chocolate Bar for a shot of chocolate. (Located on Salem Al-Mubarak St, Salmiya)
Soug Sharq is a mellow place to go during the week but gets quite crowded on the weekends. Debanhams and Sultan Center are the anchor stores and are located at either ends of the mall. In between you will find lots of fun shopping for both adults and kids. River Island, Next, Boots, Milano, Hassan Optics, Athletes Foot, Nokia, Zara, Charles Jourdan, Oasis, Faith, Anotah, Fantasy (the only good toy shop in Kuwait), Kenneth Cole, IKKS, Sony, GNC, Mothercare, Steps (shoes), Body shop, Choice, Monsoon, Taher (womens underwear), International Optics, and Adams some of the name brand stores you'll find. Bredz (they have great salads and deserts) and Marina Cafe are two good restaurants if you feel like some food. You can also find all the usual food court stuff like McDonalds, Pizza Hut, Hardees, Marina Thai (not really Thai at all, nasty-tastes like low quality chinese,) and I think they just added TGIF. Starbucks and Haagan Daz are great for people watching. There is a movie theatre but it is not stadium style like most of the new ones in Kuwait so I dont recommend it. They also have an amusement arcade to keep the little ones busy. Souk Sharq is my all time favourite mall in Kuwait. There is something for everyone.
Villa Moda is a shoppers paradise. It is a huge big glass building which houses individual designer boutiques. The brands with boutiques are Fendi, Prada, Prada Sport, Etro, Ferragamo, Marni, Dolce & Gabanna, and Gucci. The is also a section called multibrand where you will find all sorts of interesting clothes to max out your cards. There is a great concept called jeans bar where you find the collest up to date saught after things like Victoria Beckham jeans, Rock & Republic, True Religion to name a few. I also saw a lot of funky looking Indian style stuff. Here there is also Juicy for ladies and girls. Villa Moda also has an amazing sale section. Its on the top floor. It is like you found the designer sale black hole. Throughout the year they do promotions up there too which really makes it a desinger treasure trove. If you like a bargain be prepared to spend hours up there.
It is a relatively new mall, it is a classy luxury mall with different kind of shops.
There are many clothes shops for men,women and kids.
There is a great home accessory shop ( huge two floors shop ).
There are many great cafes ( Water Lemon , my favourate. Huggen daz, ..)
and also a great restaurant called Burger boutique ( opens from 3:00pm and I really can't see why !? )
and there is a nail saloon, a spa. also there some shops for watches and arabian perfumes.
it has it's own parkinglot that is attached to the mall by glass corridors. and there's a hotel which is also attached to that mall by a glass bridge. ( Mariott )