It’s no secret that Italy is known for its contribution to the fashion industry, as many of the world’s most famous designers and brands hail from our beloved country. I believe Italy’s fame in the industry is due to its history of tradition and love of beauty. Even today, you can walk the streets of Rome and find artisan shops specifically dedicated to timeless fashion pieces like dress shirts, leather shoes, bow ties, hats, and more. Fashion, shopping, and the art of dressing one’s self is not something to be taken lightly in a nation where beauty and enjoyment are among life’s most important things.
As a student living in Rome, I did not get to personally experience quite that level of old-school luxury; however, I did discover that shopping–for anybody–is high up on the list of perks that comes with living in a metropolitan city like Rome. There are many different streets and neighborhoods that offer world-famous brands and department stores, as well as local boutiques and more hip artsy shops. I learned that, when it comes to shopping in Rome, you will always be able to find what you’re looking for.
Here are my top 5 suggestions on where to shop in Rome:
1. Via del Corso
Via del Corso–one of the most famous streets in the city–is a mile-long road stretching all the way from Piazza Venezia to Piazza del Popolo. In a neighborhood full of winding, skinny side streets, Via del Corso is pretty remarkable for being so straight and wide. Shops line both sides of the street and range from famous affordable chains such as Zara, H&M, and Aldo to more pricey brands such as Ralph Lauren Polo and Diesel. There is a wide array of shops for cosmetics, clothing, accessories, shoes, and more. Sometimes the sidewalks can get so crowded with locals and tourists alike that people spill out onto the road, but that’s all part of the fun and adventure of a shopping spree in the Eternal City.
2. Via Cola di Rienzo
Located in the Prati district, not far from JCU, Via Cola di Rienzo is much like Via del Corso in that it has a similar selection of shops and many of the same brands. This district also hosts a few more high-end chains and department stores for locals in this upper class neighborhood. Taking a stroll down Via Cola di Rienzo is a more peaceful way to enjoy Roman shopping, and a nice change in scenery from the usual stroll through the historic center of Rome. Be sure to check out the Coin Excelsior department store!
3. Via dei Condotti
This luxurious street, just off of Via del Corso mentioned earlier, is full of high-end brands. Via dei Condotti is home to Dior, Gucci, Tiffany & Co, Dolce & Gabbana, and more. Even if you don’t anticipate actually being able to buy anything there, it is a wonderful street to take a stroll on–especially late at night, when the crowds have gone–and window-shop, daydream, and slowly enjoy one of Rome’s most beautiful districts.
4. Via Nazionale
Via Nazionale–a bustling main road stretching from Piazza della Repubblica all the way to Piazza Venezia–is one of Rome’s busiest streets. Although the avenue was not originally intended for shoppers, today it hosts a wide variety of affordable Italian brands and a few well-known chains. This street probably will not be in many guidebooks or on the list of ‘must-see’ spots in Rome, which makes it a great place to shop if you want a quieter shopping experience, or to check out a few stores while getting away from the main touristy spots.
5. Campo de’ Fiori area
If you’re looking for more artsy boutiques with one-of-a-kind pieces, your best bet would be to check out some of the little shops around Campo de’ Fiori and Piazza Navona. Here you will find many young and independent designer stores, so you will leave some more unique, original pieces.
Get out there and enjoy the wonderful shopping that Rome has to offer!
Alexa Vujaklija (Shearer)
Class of 2015
Grew up in the United States, Germany, the Republic of Georgia, Russia, and Bulgaria