This is Mumbai´s famous Thieves Market where bargain-hungry tourists rummage for Ming vases and Muranos at throwaway prices. The main avenue is Mutton Street, flanked by rows of little antique shops that look like musty attics and sell just about anything from old ship parts, grandfather clocks and gramophones, to crystal chandeliers and old English tea sets. Others offer authentic Victorian furniture, wonderful for browsers, antiquarians and restorers. You will find each and every type of article, such as antiques, hardware, tools, wooden carvings, statues, figures, silver coins, engines, you name it and they´ll probably have it and sell it a reasonable price. Although bargains are sometimes staggering, most of the shop owners are pretty street smart, and could easily take a self — styled aesthete for a ride, so brush up on your art before you go. This is the place where you get everything you would need — car horns, old paintings and even antique furniture. Today, you get valid bills with almost every purchase.
On Fridays, all the shops in Chor Bazaar are shut and other vendors sell their wares on the street. In this Friday market, your bargaining skills will be tested. You can get an article quoted at Rs200, for as less as Rs20 if you know how to bargain shamelessly. The Friday market is a tradition more than 100 years old. It is unlikely that shops in Chor Bazaar will compromise much on their initial quoted rate. At the most, they will reduce 15 to 20 per cent.
Undoubtedly one of the most charming places in Mumbai, Colaba Causeway could proudly be termed the `Culture Square´ of Mumbai. The look and mood are reflective of its cosmopolitan feel; a classic example of the cliched `East meets West´ or rather Mumbai-meets-Bombay. Shopping or simply browsing through the Causeway in the evening is a pleasure since the area is a delightful mosaic of colors at play under bright yellow lights. The pavements are lined with stalls that display the trendiest of trinkets and fashion accessories at good prices. Scarves and stoles are strewn resplendently all over and are available in a variety of fabrics and styles. The chic look can cost as less as Rs 50 (one-third of the shop prices). Another favorite among the young crowd are the shops that sell semi-precious stones along with wooden, glass and porcelain beads. The variety of shapes sizes and designs is mind-blowing. What makes it better is that you can combine them the way you want and get accessories personalized on the spot, thus making it popular among people who want to make their own fashion statement. A visit to Colaba would be incomplete without a quick deal at the bag stalls. Scattered all over, they are available in rare ethnic patterns and styles. Some of them are overwhelmingly intricate with sequins and mirror work. You can also find an unusual collection of purses made of jute, cane and even wood here. A great piece of work would cost you anywhere between Rs 60 and Rs 100 here. One cannot afford to neglect the vibrant mojri stalls round the corner. You can buy the most delicate and fine handwork for your footwear for a steal! These can be made to order too and would not cost more than Rs 300. It is also one of the few places in Mumbai to offer Kolhapuri chappals in varied hues and shades.
Among the most vibrant markets in the city that jostles with life and enthusiasm, is Crawford market situated on the North of Victoria terminus in South Mumbai. Crawford market is famous for its wholesale fruits, fresh vegetables and poultry market.
Built in 1871, Crawford market is also known as Jyotiba Phule Market and more than just a wholesale market dealing with food items. You can marvel the grand architecture of this covered market that has a striking colonial imprint to it. The market is nestled between the British fort and the local town. Depicting a fusion of both Flemish and Norman architecture, Crawford market has a bas relief portraying Indian peasants in wheat field just above the main entrance.
With an aura of Victorian London, Crawford market owes its name to Arthur Crawford, Bombay´s first Municipal Commissioner. The market exhibits mountains of fruit and fresh vegetables that are sold here at wholesale rates; you can also get fresh meat at the poultry section nearing to the Crawford market. There are certain stalls that sell smuggled cheese and chocolate. The market is in the center of a whole network of lanes where you can pick up almost anything..
Dadar Flower Market
The Dadar flower market also known as phool galli contains hundreds of flower shops, with bargain prices compared to the retail market. For instance, a decorative rose that retails for $0.18 to $0.23 is available here for $0.45 per dozen–less than $0.04 per flower. In addition to the crowds of merchants picking up goods for their retail outlets for resale purposes, many women come here to take advantage of the wonderful prices. So next time you want to send your better half a bouquet of red roses you know were to
Heera Panna Shopping Centre
The Heera Panna Shopping Centre, located at Haji Ali, is one of the oldest shopping centers in Mumbai. It came into existence much before the mall culture hit the city and even after that, the shopping centre consisting of 144 shops, is still thriving. Heera Panna is a blissful place for all shopping
freaks. Clothes, foot wear, accessories, music, jewellery, you name it, they have it and at great prices. This electronic haven is something you can´t get enough of, you will find the latest phone or gadget at unimaginably low prices..
It is not only a haven for small retail shops but also big brands, such as Titan, that have been in existence ever since the shopping centre first started. On the other hand, brands like Pepe, Spykar and Nokia have recently entered the place. The latest ones being Nike and Reebok.
No visit to Mumbai is complete without a foray into the bazaars of Kalbadevi, north of Crawford Market. This is the heart of ethnic Mumbai, known as The Native Town in British times. The narrow lanes of this predominantly Muslim area, hemmed in by laundry-draped chawls, are a seething mass of people who bring the local traffic to a standstill. It is here that you can buy anything from jewellery (Zaveri Bazaar), material (Mangaldas Market), household goods (Bhuleshwar Road), stationery (Abdul Rehman Street) or electrical items (Lohar Chawl).
Linking & Hill Road, Bandra
Many people come from all over Mumbai and outside to shop on Linking Road. One can find everything from international brands to clever fakes to cheap Chinese goods here. There is a mix of departmental stores, brand outlets, street side carts and regular shops that sell mainly clothes and accessories. One can also find many restaurants and cafes dotted along the miles long stretch of this road.
Though it´s official name has been Vitthalbhai Patel Marg for a very long time, everyone in Mumbai still prefers to call it Linking Road.
Hill Road is also famous for a variety of shops. Vendors sell unusual and quirky designs in footwear, 70s and 80s fashion (mostly western wear) bags, belts and so on at a very reasonable side. Once you have done shopping you can cool down with a chilled beer at Temptations opposite Globus.
Mere Weather Road
Dazzling and colourful carpets, traditional curios and antiquities can be purchased at ‘Mereweather Road´ just behind the famous Taj Mahal Hotel. Prices here are not particularly cheap, although in most cases, the quality of the goods for sale is excellent.
The Fashion Street, Colaba
Fashion Street (FS) is the name that you can hear from most of the college students in Mumbai as soon as the last bell rings. Indeed, it has become the stomping ground of the students and teenagers, who make the style statement in their classrooms and the realm of fashion. Located adjoining the Cross Maidan and opposite Azad Maidan in South Mumbai, Fashion Street is actually a market flooded with export surplus clothing. It is a group of more than 100 shops, where you can get chic clothes and fashion accessories at very cheap rates.
Most of the clothes land here because they get rejected by the quality conscious importers. It is possible that you may get a button missing or crooked collar, but on the whole, these clothes are stylish, cheap and of good quality. Mumbai, the Business Capital of India, is the prime exporter of readymade clothes to abroad. The clothes, which make the craze stuff in the leading stores of the US and Europe, can be obtained at Fashion Street, besides for a fraction of their price overseas.
Apart from clothing, here you can find shops selling shoe and costume jewelry too. Haggling is 'mantra' of shopping at Fashion Street, where shopkeepers generally quote higher prices. You can really enjoy buying cool stuff, while bargaining and cracking pretty good deals. Essentially ask half of the price, what has been asked by the proprietor, haggle a bit or move forward and eventually, you will get the selected things at the price quoted by you. On your visit to Mumbai (Bombay), definitely pay a visit at Fashion Street to get some really nice stuff.
Specialization is the keyword of the present times. To your surprise, our ancestors were not ignorant of this current fact when Zaveri Bazaar was established. The bazaar is virtually a market that understands and speaks the language of gold. You are guessing right. This is the bustling jewelry market of the Island City of India. Located at Bhuleshwar in South Bombay, Zaveri Bazaar is a muddle of narrow lanes, dotted with hundreds of jewelry shops that sell gems and jewels.
The glittering market has the headquarters of Tribhovandas Bhimji Zaveri, the biggest jewelry retailer of India. Here, you can find the latest designs of ornaments, made of every possible gem and precious metal. Undoubtedly, women would love to haunt this place without bothering about the jostle inside the market. Actually, Zaveri Bazaar gets the maximum credit of jewelry and gems' export from the country.
The extravaganza ranges from all kinds of gems and precious stones to each and every metal. If want to buy jewelry from here, confirm the rates from government approved shops prior getting into any deal. Profligacy could get you photo frames, clips, tea-sets, dinnerware, toys crafted out of expensive metals. Not interested in buying, you can always glimpse the exquisite ornaments showcased outside the shops. During the times of Diwali and Ramzan, Zaveri Bazaar is a place to see amidst gold illumination.
Shopping Malls - High Street Phoenix
The tall chimneys at the conveniently located High Street Phoenix mall give away the fact that this area used to be full of textile mills before it was redeveloped. The highlight of the mall is its swanky Skyzone shopping space, full of premium national and international stores. These are located along side cheaper retail outlets to suit all budgets. You'll also find a courtyard containing food shops, bowling alley, gaming arcade, and sports bar. After shopping in the evening, head to nearby Blue Frog to hear some excellent live music. Address: 462 Senapati Bapat Marg, Lower Parel, Mumbai. Opening Hours: 9.30 a.m. until 9.30 p.m. daily.
Shopping Malls - Atria Millenium Mall
Looking for luxury products and international designer brands? You'll find them at this mall. The five level Atria mall had a star-studded opening in mid 2006, and has remained popular as it's one of the few malls that are centrally located in Mumbai. The Eco Corner store is worth checking out for its unique range of environmentally friendly home and bath accessories, made by villagers. In addition to shops and a food court, this mall also has a 4-D cinema and large entertainment zone. Address: Dr. Annie Beasant Road, Worli, (next to the Planetarium, near Haji Ali). Opening Hours: 11 a.m. until 10 p.m. daily.
Shopping Malls - InOrbit Mall
Inorbit, with its 1.2 million square feet of space, is one of the largest malls in South East Asia. The ground floor is mostly occupied by major British department stores. There are also a number of Indian designer fashion outlets, and an Australian cookie bakery. The first floor is full of national and international clothing brands, a music store, and bookstore. The top floor has been exclusively devoted to food and entertainment, and includes a kids play area. The drawback? The mall is in the outer suburbs. Address: Link Road, Malad (outer western Mumbai). Opening Hours: 11 a.m. until 9.30 p.m. daily.
Shopping Malls - Oberoi Mall
The classy Oberoi Mall opened in mid 2008, and offers 500,000 square feet of shopping, dining and entertainment. It features a large central atrium with an uninterrupted view of every shop front within the mall. The attractions of this mall are the Lifestyle Home Center outlet, and the Central department store. Find cosmetics, perfumes, and accessories on the ground floor, and clothing and sportswear on the second floor. The mall's third level has a large food court and gaming area. Address: Oberoi Garden City, Off Western Express Highway, Goregoan East, Mumbai. Opening Hours: 10 a.m. until 10 p.m.
Shopping Malls - Infiniti Mall
This three level mall isn't as big as some, but it still has plenty of clothing, jewelry, electronics, and music stores. Anyone who loves books will appreciate the fantastic Landmark bookstore that can be found there. The mall also has a food court and children's entertainment area. Address: New Link Road, Andheri West, Mumbai. Opening Hours: 10 a.m. until 10 p.m.