Thomas Goldsmiths is unique: it's one of the few jewelery retailers also involved in the design and manufacture of the pieces. The store, situated in the cathedral-quarter's Pump Street, carries the work of many of the top UK and Irish designers. It was established by two talented designers who both have an arts background. The works range from simple-but-beautiful bracelets to elegantly made diamond earrings. The shop has had great praise in the media for its carefully chosen stock and informal attitude. And the owners are very accessible when it comes to talking to customers. The place is also an occasional venue for workshops and displays.
A delightful and quietly relaxing bookshop located beside the city walls (where the Craft Village intersects with Magazine Street) dealing in second-hand and antiquarian books. The store contains a well-chosen mix of popular fiction (a lot of it Irish), history, biographies and popular art/music. Visitors will probably find much to interest them here: the categories are reasonably ordered, and the books are all in good condition for the asking prices. The proprietor, Art Byrne, is usually on hand to deal with all queries. A mail-order service is available also, but we aware of how much heavy tomes are to send by post.
Interfaced with the historic city walls, Foyleside is the biggest commercial mall in the north west. With over 40 high street stores including Boots, Marks & Spencer, Dunnes, Body Shop and Dixons, the center provides a good place to shop in a comfortable and spacious environment. Over 1400 parking spaces are provided as well as a bus-coach park. As an added bonus to the shopping facilities, a McDonald's is located on the top floor. The many incidental amenities include a bureau de change, two bank ATMs and a (UK) lottery ticket kiosk. Taxis can be booked on the ground-floor to come to the Foyle Street entrance. Restrooms and phones are located here too.
Ideally situated inside the city walls, this center contains a sensible and interesting fusion of high-street names, and local shops over three levels. Names include Mothercare, Dorothy Perkins, JJB Sports, Burton and Harry Corry. The mall is very worthwhile visiting for clothiers stores, specifically casual jeans-and-sweater outlets. Access entrances are on Ferryquay Street, Linenhall Street, with the main one at Shipquay Street. All in all, it's a spacious and comfortable environment in which to shop. (Public restrooms are on the second floor.) The Richmond leads directly into the larger, more modern in design, Foyleside Shopping Centre.
Tesco, one of the big British chain-supermarkets, introduced the concept of 24-hour shopping to the people of the north west. For insomniacs who like to shop for groceries at 3am this is ideal. But this anchor-store (in the Lisnagelvin Shopping Centre) is more than just a foodhall. It sells electronic goods, papers/books and videos. It has impressive home-kitchen and clothes sections. In the off-licence area the choice of wines is wide and fair-priced (though be aware that licensing laws mean closing at 10.30pm). Avoid the less-flexible and limited Tesco outlet in the city center. Call 0845 6779433 for details.
A really functional but also good-looking gift store, this is situated on Shipquay Street in the heart of the walled city. It sells good quality general gift ware and interesting Irish souvenirs. The items on offer include photo frames, Irish-cut Tyrone and Waterford crystal and fine sterling silver items. A comprehensive range of tasteful Celtic jewelery is available also. This is one of the best gift/souvenir shops in the area, appealing as it does to both locals and visitors.
This store, which manufactures and retails fine hand-cut crystal in many different designs, is located in the old-world Craft Village, just off Shipquay Street, in the heart of the city. It has an engraving service specializing in trophies and presentation pieces, with next-day turnaround available. A mail-order service is available worldwide to those overseas wishing to capture a special memory of Derry.
For over 50 years the Donegal Shop, has occupied this quaint semi-basement space on Shipquay Street within the city walls. Guaranteed to appeal to visitors looking for all things Irish, its stock includes hand-knits, tweeds, Celtic jewelery, pottery and gifts. The items here are of the highest well-crafted quality, and it's an ideal shop to purchase genuine Irish crafts and garments. Traditional Irish lace is stocked; and T-shirts and postcards with Irish images, designs and logos are also sold here. There's no blarney in this store, it is the real McCoy.
A women's boutique with grand taste, originality and individualistic flair, this is located on the busy Strand Road shopping thoroughfare. Its advantage is to offer high-quality clothing to the discerning shopper at good price tags. Top clothing designer names are in stock in a wide array of sizes. An excellent range of accessories is also in stock. Very much an Irish-style shop, Veronica's is the place to visit when shopping for that special dress that will stand out in America or Italy. The summer sales are particularly worth checking out.
City Man is an independently owned clothes store with a very good selection of brand-name clothes, like Remus, Levis and Ben Sherman. But for many customers its main plus is that it trades in Irish punts. In other words, the face-value prices are around 30% cheaper than shops that sell in sterling. Add to that deals such as a free shirt and tie with suits and you can see why this is an alternative to chain-stores. The store is roomy and bright with helpful, flexible and friendly staff.