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Shop Your Way Through Florida

Whether you are looking for the latest, the oldest or the freshest, Florida is a shopper’s paradise. From designer stores, specialty shops and Florida cuisine, to antiques, collectibles and even spa treatments, you will find what you are shopping for in the Sunshine State.

For a one-stop shopping experience, Florida’s malls carry everything from high fashion to specialty jewelry and designer chocolate, all with a distinctly Florida flair. Visit the Dolphin Mall - just five miles from the Miami International Airport - for the best in South Florida shopping. The newly renovated shopping center has been specifically designed to reflect Miami’s rich multicultural heritage with both high style street wear and casual garb for the sands of South Beach. Even the food court is reflective, designed as a hacienda, boasting cuisine from all over the world. Out-of-town visitors receive special shopping discounts, and there is an airport shuttle for those who are on a schedule. Visit www.shopdolphinmall.com for more details.

Not far up the coast, visit the Galleria Mall (www.galleriamall-fl.com) in Fort Lauderdale, and create an entirely new look from the hottest fashion styles. Develop your wardrobe at Burdines-Macy’s and Neiman Marcus, accessorize at Saks Fifth Avenue, and finish the ensemble with a pair of shades from Sunglass Hut If you’re visiting Tampa, stop by the International Plaza (www.shopinternationalplaza.com) and experience all the style of Central Florida. Keep yourself in the height of fashion with shops like Gucci, Christian Dior and Adrienne Vittaddini, or develop a carefree style for the beach at Hollister or Abercrombie & Fitch. A day of shopping can leave you famished, so before you leave, don’t forget to indulge yourself at The Blue Martini, a classy rooftop bar, or the decadent Cheesecake Factory.

If you prefer marketplaces to malls, Festival in Pompano Beach boasts 400,000 square feet of marketplace shopping with a Florida twist: air conditioning! With 800 shops, this market allows its visitors a shopping experience for every occasion. Spend all day searching for the best deal on everything from clothes and shoes to gifts, jewelry and home furnishings. For a more relaxing experience, indulge in a day of total luxury at the Tango Salon and Day Spa. Pamper yourself from head to toe, or simply replenish your stock of salon goodies. Shoppers can search for the freshest local produce in Festival’s farmers’ market, world famous for its New York pickles, exotic spices, flowers, candy and nuts. When you need to refuel, choose from a wide array of international cuisine, as well as tasty American dishes to give you enough energy for the next bargain hunt. For a list of shops at the Festival marketplace, visit www.festival.com.

For those who appreciate a good deal, Florida offers a wide variety of outlet malls where you can get that designer look without the designer price. St. Augustine Premium Outlets (http://www.premiumoutlets.com/outlets/outlet.asp?id=55) is home to 95 outlet stores, with impressive savings from J. Crew, Banana Republic, Coach and Tommy Bahama, just to name a few. Also worth a visit are the Silver Sands Factory Stores (www.silversandsoutlet.com) in Destin. This shopping center is the nation’s largest, featuring more than 100 name brand factory outlets and is literally across the street from the Gulf of Mexico.

Florida offers a variety of unique shopping experiences, designed to help you find that perfect souvenir that you know you won’t find anywhere else. Key West is the place to go for the most unique finds in the state. If you feel like shell-hunting, but are trying to avoid the heat, visit the Shell Warehouse for everything shell-related, from jewelry to chandeliers. Located on Whitehead Street in Key West, the unique shop has the look of an old clipper, with weathered walls covered with trophy fish. For a true specialty, visit the pride of Key West, Kino Sandals, where the Lopez family has been handcrafting sandals for 40 years. Best of all, each comfortable pair is less than $10, so you can walk the beaches without a care in the world. For complete rejuvenation that you can take home, don’t miss Key West Aloe (www.keywestaloe.com) on Front Street, where all the products are developed from local tropical ingredients, like key lime and pure aloe. Choose from an array of natural shampoos, lotions and sea salt rubs, and don’t forget the sunscreen.

In Florida, it is well understood that one person’s trash is another person’s treasure, and the Sunshine State’s antique and flea markets are perfect for those who appreciate a time-honored value. Truly an eclectic experience, Mirror Image Antiques in Havana, Florida is one of the South’s most unique specialty shops, featuring antiques from across America, England and France. The shop is home to various sports memorabilia, as well as historical books and vintage fishing tackle. If you’re in Bradenton, be sure to visit the Red Barn Flea Market, which boasts more than 600 booths, and has been a proud tradition since 1981. Here you will find everything from clothing, collectibles and antiques, to electronics, tools and pet supplies. (www.redbarnfleamarket.com) Also worth a visit is Renninger’s Antique Center in Mount Dora, which features 40,000 square feet of antique furniture, collectibles, jewelry, glass, china, dolls, paintings, clocks and hardware. More than 180 shops make up the antique center, and there are also a number of special events and extravaganzas to enjoy.

Whatever treasure it is that you are hunting for - new or old, unique, inexpensive, or both - Florida is the state for shopping. For further information on these and other Florida shopping centers, visit www.visitflorida.com/experience/shopping.

For information on travel to Florida or to order a copy of VISIT FLORIDA's free Vacation Guide visit VISIT FLORIDA's consumer web site, www.VISITFLORIDA.com, or call VISIT FLORIDA's toll-free consumer number at 1-888-7-FLAUSA (352872).

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