Shopping malls in Cape Town are never more than a hop, skip and a jump away, and expats will find everything from African curios to fine wine to hand-crafted clothing and jewellery.
Opening hours vary from location to location, but most stores in shopping malls are open from 9am to 7pm, Monday through Saturday, and from 10am to 5pm on Sunday.
Location can also dictate the kind of stores that feature in each mall. For example, the V & A Waterfront and the Cape Quarter are plopped down in prime tourist territory, thus expats should expect luxury items with prices that match the money foreigners bring to spend. On the other hand, Canal Walk and the Garden Centre offer much more practical stores that align with local needs and budgets.
Shopping malls in Cape Town
V & A Waterfront (Mouille Point)
Much photographed, the V & A Waterfront has been developed in the old Cape Town harbour and is set against the wonderful backdrop of Table Mountain. There is a huge choice of shops including upmarket clothes shops, supermarkets (Pick 'n Pay and Woolworths) and bookshops. There are also lots of restaurants, a cinema, entertainment options such as the Two Oceans Aquarium, boat trips, bands and buskers.
Cavendish Square (Claremont)
Situated in Claremont in the Southern Suburbs, the upmarket Cavendish shopping centre is packed with a huge range of shops from supermarkets (Woolworths) to boutiques, bookshops and home décor shops. There is also a cinema.
Canal Walk (Century City)
Situated off the N1 in the Northern Suburbs Century City is has literally hundreds of shops including international brands, clothes shops, supermarkets, restaurants, fast food, toy shops and a cinema. The shopping here is slightly less upmarket than Cavendish or the V & A, but the choice at Cape Town's biggest shopping centre is vast.
Garden Centre (City Bowl)
On Mill Street in the leafy Gardens suburb, the Gardens Centre with its prominent tower block is good for convenience shopping with a large Pick 'n Pay and a tiny Woolworths Foodstore. There is also a fantastic German deli, an art gallery, a couple of hairdressers and a video shop, amoung others.
With over 80 stores, the Constantia Village is an ambient, opulent shopping experience set in the heart of the vineyard-peppered, old-world charm of Constantia. There are a number of great eateries, jewellery stores and fashion boutiques as well as a large supermarket.
Cape Quarter (Green Point)
The Cape Quarter was completely reconstructed ahead of the 2010 World Cup and now occupies an innovative shopping niche in Cape Town. Unique designer brands, upmarket artisans, fabulous florists and fantastic restaurants now fill in an impressive artificial courtyard and surrounds. The aesthetic is extraordinary, and the prices equally exorbitant.