With More than 160 stores, shops and restaurants and food stalls located in two major areas, the Premium Outlets and the Promenade, occupying 454,000 square feet and 220,000 square feet respectively. the drive from downtown los angeles to the premium outlets will take from 1 hour to 1 1/2 hours, depending on the traffic conditions. Among the retail outlets here are: t Banana Republic Factory Store, Barneys New York, Coach, Cole Haan, Giorgio Armani, J.Crew, Kenneth Cole, Lucky Brand, Last Call by Neiman Marcus, Nike, Polo Ralph Lauren, Saks Fifth Avenue Off 5th, Tommy Hilfiger, Tory Burch and more. So what are you waiting for?
Mon-Sat: 10am-9pm, Sun: 10am-8pm
What to buy: all the famous name brands which has deep discounts for off season or factory overruns.
Here is the closet outlet shopping center by the heart of Los Angeles. Located in Commerce, less than 10 miles from LA, The Citadel looks like a museum from the outside with the sandy Egyptian fortress facade. Inside is a shopper's heaven, featuring mostly apparel, but also speciatly shops selling everything from kitchen supplies to toys for the kids. What's wonderful here is that there is ample parking, less stress over lines of people by the cash registers and a wide selction of bargain-filled shops. Woo-hoo!
What to buy: designer shoes, jeans, pots, pans, teddy bears, books, belts, hot dogs, necklaces, hats, stationery, tennis balls, earrings, luggage, Swiss Army knives, cds, etc, etc tec
Located west of LA is the Camarillo shopping mall. It's huge and has a large number of your (well my) favourite brands incl North Face, New Balance and Vans. Lots and lots to keep boys and girls of all ages happy though it's a long trek to get here. The mall is broken into three areas and there's lots of walking needed to get you around all of the shops. We spent 4 hours here but could have easily managed 6.
What to pay: Being an outlet mall you're paying less than retail though likely it's not always the case. At the centre's management office you can buy a discount pass for $5 and that gets you extra savings at many of the shops. Our hotel, Magic Castle, arranged for us to get free discount vouchers.
Discount shopping is easily done in California - if you want good deals on Ralph Lauren, DKNY, Calvin Klein, Nine West, Liz Claiborne and many sports brands of shoes, socks and caps, head to the following stores and get great discounts for genuine designer items:
- Ross Dress for Less
- Burlington Coat Factory
All these stores get real designer clothes, end of season clothes, from major department stores - if you are a true bargain shopper, you will get to these stores and fill up your cart!! On Tuesdays at Ross, they have more discounts for seniors. Locals are well aware of these discount stores and frequent them. Ross opens early , around 9:30am and most others open around 11am. The lines can be long , so be prepared to spend time to check out. There is little sales asssistance help for sizes, but the deals you get are well worth it. I have been shopping at these stores for the last 10 years, and always go there when visiting California.
What to buy: Ralph Lauren tops - $14.99 and $19.99
DKNY tops - $19.99
New Balance shoes at Marshalls - $34.99 (same price last year and this year!)
Perfumes - Bvlgari for $29
Guess watches - $34.99
Guess bags - $24.99
Michael Kors tops and bags - around $30-$50
Pants for work - Ralph Lauren - $16.99 and $24.99
Shorts - Dockers - $14.99
London Fog trench coat - Burlington Coat factory -$59.99
What to pay: Under $30-$50 for most items - jeans, tops, shoes, bags. On discounted days you can pay $10 or $12 for red ticketed discount items. I bought brown stiped office work pants for $4.99 at Burlington Coat factory. At Marshalls, they get new deliveries on Thursdays and you can pick great items up for a bargain!
The Citadel Outlet Mall is just south of Los Angeles off the 5 freeway - you'll know it when you've arrived because what you see from the freeway is a huge building that looks rather like a Mesopotamian Castle or something - definitely the only one of its kind in Los Angeles! Back in the 1920s, it was a tire factory but, when it shut down, the city made a rare history-conscious move, the old building was preserved and turned into a nice outlet mall. There are several outlet shops here as well as some restaurants, including Ruby's, a pretty good burger joint/1940's-style diner.
What to buy: They have a good selection of outlet shops - Calvin Klein, Converse, Levi's, Guess? - and more.
What to pay: Being an outlet mall, prices are pretty reasonable.
I notice a lot of tourists want to shop at outlet malls when they come to Los Angeles. There is only one in town and the others are on the outskirts of Los Angeles. I think you will find the better deals at the various ones outside of LA.
In Los Angeles, the Citadel Outlets is located off the 5 Fwy at Atlantic Blvd. North. Some of the stores you will find are BCBG, Billabong, Calvin Klein, Guess, Kenneth Cole, Levi, Nine West and Tommy Hilfiger. NO Coach, Ralph Lauren or Nordstrom Rack. Website: http://www.citadeloutlets.com/index.cfm
The second closest outlet mall is in Ontario, CA. It's about 30-45 minutes east of Los Angeles and it's so-so. The Ontario Mills shopping center is located just north of the 10 Freeway, exit at Milliken and just west of the 15 Freeway. Website: http://www.ontariomills.com/static/node689.jsp
The better outlet malls are even further out. Going toward Palm Springs is the Desert Hills Premium Outlets in Cabazon. Located off the 10 Freeway exit at Fields Road and it's about 2 hours east of Los Angeles. Website: http://www.premiumoutlets.com/outlets/outlet.asp?id=6
In the other direction is the Camarillo Premium Outlets in Camarillo. Located off the 101 Freeway going towards Santa Barbara. It's about 1 hour north of Los Angeles. Exit at Carmen Drive or Las Posas Road. Website: http://www.premiumoutlets.com/outlets/outlet.asp?id=20
Tip - find an information booth and ask for any promotions they might be having or coupon booklet. If you have a Discovercard, you should mention this to them and they usually have discounts for Discovercard holders.
You really do need to allocate a whole day (or most of a day) to driving out to Carsbad on a shopping trip. These premium outlets contain over 90 stores, many of which are true factory outlets offering significant savings on products. This site includes stores like Gap, Banana Republic, Adidas, Calvin Klein etc. And there are a few places to rest and have lunch or dinner, before shopping some more!
What to buy: I always shop for my clothes in LA, especially at factory outlets. I love shopping at Gap and Banana Republic in particular. They have great casual and smart-casual clothes that you can mix and match.
What to pay: Less than normal retail stores. But do your homework and make sure you're receiving genuine discounts compared to retail outlets!
Take a stroll down Olvera street and let the brightly coloured market stalls take you right back to old Me-hi-co. Even without the stalls this place is typically Mexican, and not surprisingly it's the oldest original street in LA.
Stalls run all the way down the street and they sell everything you might expect - leather goods, brightly coloured shawls, Mexican style clothes - especially childrens clothes, guitars, wooden toys, blankets (again in bright colours), postcards, religious items.....whatever! I bought nothing, I just feasted my eyes and ears on the colours and sounds of another world.
I can't advise you on prices, as I didn't ask, but all the stalls were busy. It's a great place to come for souvenirs.
There are a couple of cafes/restaurants along the street, and I was enchanted by the Mexicans playing guitar and singing under a tree outside one of these. As I listened to them, I watched another Mexican family with young children grouped under another tree, with colourful pink bougainvillea hanging down over their heads.
What a delightful place.
Whoa, me love fun shoes!
Off Broadway in Hollywood is a very LARGE discount shoe store. It's a chain store with multiple locations therefore not exclusive to Hollywood. Good place to get marked down shoes.
What to buy: Shoes!
We all like deals. Here's a place to get fabulous discounts. Just off the Wilmington/Imperial Metro Blue Line Stop is a huge Factory 2 U store at the Kenneth Hahn Plaza. Factory 2 U is an ordinary national discount chain for mainly clothes and home accessories. This particular one is the biggest one that I've seen as far as the merchandise stock goes. For clothes, there is a good selection of decent and quality brand names. I managed to get good looking 8 items for about $25!!
The Hahn Plaza is only a 5 min walk from the Metro Blue Line stop. It is in the ghetto heart of Los Angeles in the Willowbrook area, near Watts. The area is generally seen as one with high criminal activity. As a kind of tourist of this area myself, I say that
I would have to give an extra heads up to be safe and to come here during daytime hours. There is a good amount of security by the Metro and at the Plaza so I still recommend to come here if you want to take advantage of good deals.
What to buy: Women's Clothes
home accessories (bed comforters, bath accessories, rugs, picture frames, etc)
What to pay: Very little!
I managed to get:
chenille gloves for -- 99 cents !
a long sweater coat for - $3 !
a long sleeve shirt (New York Comp brand) for - $1
a fashionable blazer (Charlotte Russe brand) for $10 (would have been doubled at the mall)
We loved El Pueblo State Historic Parc at the northside of Downtown LA. The Pueblo region is the site of the first Los Angeles settlement, dating to 1781. Probably the only historical place left in LA. Several sites of historical significance are contained therein, like the Plaza Church (from 1818) at the Main Street which is opposite to Old Plaza.
Converted to a colorful Mexican market place in 1930 by Mrs. Christine Sterling, it is also the setting for holiday celebrations and Mexican style dancing and music.
Visit the market and enjoy the vibe!
What to pay: Less than average.
shops are several - selling tshirts - 5 for $10 and alot of souvenirs... Jewelry store too is abundant in this area.
What to buy: clothing, jewelry, imitation bags from Louis Vuitton, Fendi, Dior, Prada...
What to pay: cash preferred for bargaining power
OK. I hate shopping in malls and don't care that much for shopping anyway, but if you're coming from outside the US, the outlet malls give you sometimes phenomenal values on junk (like Nike, Levi's etc) that costs more in your country. If this is your kind of thing, head out to Camarillo and go to the outlet malls and buy gifts of junk for your friends who will love you and be grateful.
LA's only outlet shops according to the website with al the usual concessions like Guess Tommy Hilfiger Calvin klein Levi's Reebok Puma...............
What to buy: Jeans , perfumes, Labels
What to pay: Discount up to 50%
Old town Pasadena has many antique shops. This particular one was typical where many vendors have stalls within a large area so there will be many different types of antiques and used stuff.