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Valley Fair Mall: Best SJ Mall
Valley Fair is the biggest mall in San Jose and has a pretty wide selection of stores. It has recently been expanded and now houses over 100 stores in this two floor indoor complex. Some of the major stores include Macy's, Nordstroms, Pottery Barn and Crate & Barrel among others. In addition to clothes and accessories you'll find plenty of places to eat. See the complete list of shops and restaurants here.
When you're done shopping inside walk across the street to Santana Row for an outdoor shopping experience in this upscale shopping area.
From I-880: Follow signs for Stevens Creek Blvd. exit. Westfield Shoppingtown Valley Fair is on your right.
From I-280: Going North, take I-880 North. Follow signs for Stevens Creek Blvd. exit. Westfield Shoppingtown Valley Fair is on your right. Going South, take Winchester/Campbell exit. Turn left at signal at end of ramp. Left again onto Winchester, Turn right onto Stevens Creek Blvd. Westfield Shoppingtown Valley Fair is on your left From I-101: Take I-880 South, follow signs for Stevens Creek Blvd. exit. Westfield Shoppingtown Valley Fair is on your right. From Highway 85: Take Hwy 17 North, follow signs for Stevns Creek Blvd. exit. Westfield Shoppingtown Valley Fair is on your right.
The Valley Transportation Authority (VTA) has 4 routes that can take you to Westfield Shoppingtown Valley Fair. They are lines 23, 36, 60 and 87. Their phone number is (408)321-2300.
What to buy: Valley Fair has just about everything that you could possible want from clothese to shoes to accessories. You can even buy sporting goods, art, a Macintosh computer and geet your hair cut before having lunch.
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Nordstroms Rack: Discount Shopping
We frequent this store because it's close by. You do have to be in the mood to go to the racks and racks of clothes. It can be hit or miss -- but some days you can walk away with a new wardrobe. It can be a good place to people watch or kill time before you go some place. The a/c is funky here (sometimes it's really hot, but then the next time you visit it's extremely cold) -- I really wish their management would fix that.
What to buy: Some items are made for NR, but others do come from Nordstrom (which are harder to find). They sell shoes, women's/men's (obviously the women's section is larger), children's, accessories, and some housewares.
What to pay: Depends how much you want to buy
Other Shopping Areas: Tri city sports
This store is technically not in San Jose, but heck when I am there, I dont know where one city begins and the other one ends.
This is a MASSIVE sports store and patio center located in freemont. They have almost everything that you could think of to need for sports
Other Shopping Areas: Valley Fair
Well it's not a shop, It's a mall, A very big one at that. Many stores that arent in Hawaii such as J crew, Discovery store, Victorias secret, Bare escentuals, Limited too, and other department stores too. This is a very big mall.
What to buy: Bodouins bread from the food court. It's good to take home with you and you dont have to rush if you were planning to buy it at the SFO Airport.
What to pay: Any amount till you hit your credit limit!
Main Street Shopping in Willow Glen
Besides the newest Santana Row shopping pavillion, there lacks a certain "Main Street" feel to San Jose. One area that might suffice is the neighborhood main street shops in Willow Glen.
Willow Glen used to be its own town before San Jose incorporated the small neighborhood into its city limits in the 1950's. However, this has not resulted in Willow Glen residents losing their neighborhood identity. If there was ever a place where people happily proclaim that they are a resident, then Willow Glen is it.
There is still a small town feel when residents stroll along the street, browsing through the book, clothes, and furniture stores. Some "Glenites" even go so far as to patronize only stores on the street and protest when Long's Drugs Store opened up. Neighbors in Willow Glen are set on preserving its small town appeal and so, in a city that constantly encroaches on available land to produce cookie-cutter shoping centers, Willow Glen would be a nice stop on any shopper's agenda.
What to buy: There are many different types of shops and restaurants in Willow Glen. Clothes, furniture, antiques, beauty, and novelty shops abound. There is also a farmer's market each Saturday on the corner of Minnesota Avenue and Lincoln Avenue, every Saturday until 1 PM.
What to pay: Prices are a bit higher than the malls because the stores cater to a high-end clientele and they are mostly boutiques. It is still nice to browse though.
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