The shopping experience of Willemstad on the Caribbean island of Curacao is world renowned among visitors to this exotic part of the world. The island itself is a shopping enthusiast’s paradise, but the capital of Willemstad boasts more than 200 shops lining the main streets. The main shopping district is that of the Punda, which extends for five blocks in the heart of the city. The normal shopping hours are from 8 in the morning to noon and from 2 to 6 in the afternoon from Monday to Saturday. Since this is a busy port when cruise ships visit, some of the stored have extended hours on such occasions, remaining open during the lunch hours.
If you are looking for exotic perfumes, then Willemstad will certainly satisfy your dreams in the great buys available in the stores. Buy souvenirs of Dutch Delft blue or those made from fine Italian silk. You will find inexpensive and genuine Swiss watches and cameras by Japanese and German manufacturers at unbelievably low prices. Rum and liquors made on the island are widely available, some of which has the unique blue color of Curacao alcoholic beverages.
Bamali is one store in the Punda where you can purchase designer clothing. Every garment sold here is designed and made by the owners of the store. This presents tourists with a unique opportunity to have something made especially for them, that is if you have enough time to spend on the island for your vacation. All the styles are largely of Indonesian design and range from casual to formal and elegant designs. Although this store does cater mainly to women, there are some styles of men’s clothing available. Even if you don’t want to buy clothing, there is a wide selection of hats and footwear.
Browse the works of art and jewelry made from black coral at the Bert Knubben Black Koral Art Studio – the only place on the island where it is legal to purchase this natural product. The items for sale here are one of the kind and are collector’s items. The store and the artisan are also widely known for the quality of work in every piece.
If you want to purchase jewelry while visiting Willemstad, you have to visit Gandelum Jewelers. Here you will find exquisitely designed pieces that often contain precious gems. The store is also the place to buy Prima Chase leather goods that have the map of the world embossed on them.
Since electronics are duty-free on Curacao, you can save yourself a lot of money by making your purchases in the capital. There are several stores that specialize in electronics of all kinds. You just have to make sure you have enough room in your luggage to bring them back home.
In addition to the shopping center of the city, to round out your shopping experience in Willemstad, you cannot miss the markets where the artisans show off their wares and expect you to bargain for the best price. The beaches and the warm weather may be the main drawing card for Curacao, but the shopping is absolutely divine.