It is an experience just to walk into Hot Wax Records, a tiny hole-in-the-wall shop, and stroll through the decades of vintage rock paraphernalia adorning every flat surface. The selection of used and unusual vinyl records, cassette tapes, CDs, and even 8-track cassettes is incredible. It is difficult to distinguish between veteran customers and staff, as both share a great enthusiasm for the music and know exactly where to find the rarest recordings.
La Chic Ladies Wear is aptly named. Located at Bankers Hall, it offers upscale women's fashions and exclusive designer labels. It is haute couture at its finest. La Chic Ladies Wear caters to the business executive woman who doesn't mind spending money on quality clothing. But be prepared. A Donna Karan blazer can set you back by a huge margin and so will a red cocktail dress. It offers exclusive designers from Italy and Switzerland like Renzo and Akris so most of these fashions are not available anywhere else in the province. Call for more details.
In sharp contrast to the high rises all around, The Beehive soap and candle store is in a tiny cottage-like building with an immaculate yard and rustic wood sign in front. This traditional style extends inside the store, where hundreds of naturally-made soaps and candles in a myriad of shapes and sizes line the walls. Produced without the harmful compounds found in most commercial soaps, these claim to have less impact upon your skin, while still maintaining the same cleaning power. There is also an assortment of cute little handmade gifts and knickknacks.
If you are searching for a unique gift or new addition to one of your collections, look no further than Inside Avenue Antiques in Calgary. The massive establishment offers a wonderland of antiques for shoppers to explore. Dozens of different antique vendors have set up shop within the space, which means that you won't have to trek across town to find a particular item, because with this many vendors, you are bound to find something you love within this huge antiques complex. The well-organized space also features collectible vendors that sell a wide range of items, from antique spoons to first volume tomes. Be sure to set aside a couple of hours to better explore the nooks and crannies of this wonderful space.
This shop has been serving Calgarians for close to 50 years and is now a city landmark. Even the rich and powerful drop by the last time singer/actor/diva Cher was in town she picked up a couple of military flight jackets. This is one of the most authentic military surplus stores in North America with a staff conversant in military memorabilia. Crown offers everything from waterproof matches to footwear and binoculars, and most items are very reasonably priced. Even if you don't buy anything, it makes for great browsing.
This antique mall is located in the town of Airdrie, which is just 15 minutes from the north of Calgary accessible via the former Highway 2, Queen Elizabeth II Highway. This mall, called Where on Earth Did You Get That, is home to over 50 antique dealers, with a variety of useful, pre-loved, recyclable antiques from the mid-1900s to the early 19th Century. Though it can easily be taken for a museum, visitors are surprised at the abundance of antiques, from silver, china, vintage jewelery, old gramophones, antique furniture, paintings, and period gasoline station equipment.
The Bow Valley Square in the city's downtown core is known for its mix of offices, personal services and shopping areas. The Bow Valley Square sees a lot of walking-friendly traffic and activity come lunchtime, when office workers pan out through the extensive Plus 15 walkways that connect the Bow Valley Square to other buildings in the core. With more than 50 retail offerings, health and financial services, and even a lunchtime hour theater—the Lunchbox Theatre— the Bow Valley Square is a lively hub of activity in any season of the year.
Owner Donna Riopel operates this fabulous second-hand shopping gem with the purpose of providing great brand name items at a much lower cost than you would pay for new. Located close to the trendy Kensington Road area, it caters to the more fashion-conscious customer and is jammed full of clothes, shoes and jewelry. You can also bring in your old clothing accessories and buy new items with the credit. The store is situated just off Memorial Drive NorthWest and there is free meter parking in the alley to the rear on Sundays.
Beret-wearing Richard Harvey may be Calgary's favorite oenophile and he is the mind behind the wine lists of many of the city's finer restaurants. His downtown wine shop boasts a wide selection of upscale wines including many obscure varieties and offerings from little-known vineyards. The stock features mostly high end wines, with few bottles available at reasonable prices. There is also a small selection of fine spirits, whiskeys and micro-brewed beer. The biggest asset of the shop, however, may be the knowledgeable staff who are happy to guide you through their favorites.