Online fashion retailer, Zalando, has published their results of a study into the world’s most elegant cities. Some boast the most chic shopping experiences, and others have rare crafts and designer garments, if you know where to go looking.
Some of us head abroad in search of sun, sea, and sand. Some of us go looking for adventure. And some of us go in search of the world’s finer things in life!
5. “Beauty of surface, of tone, of detail” — Venice
With its classic canals and gorgeous waterways, nothing says luxury quite like Venice. Built on a history of mask-crafting and glass-blowing for the Carnival of Venice, the city has evolved naturally from the sophisticated craft of unique masks to the stylish designs of fashion.
For designer boutiques, St Mark’s Square has everything you need on the streets of Calle delle Mercerie and Calle Larga XXII Marzo. There are plenty of little side streets to explore too, with independent sellers offering custom-made Venetian slippers and more.
With so much on offer, you might be wondering why Venice only came in at number 5 on Zalando’s list. Well, it has a lower number of fashion schools within the city, which was one of the survey’s scoring points.
Return flight: Business class return from £487.50*
Luxury accommodation: From £162pp per night for a 5* hotel
4. “For there is in London all that life can afford” — London
London is a truly unique city, with an unparalleled selection of quirky restaurants and bars. Look out over the cityscape from The Shard, or sip on award-winning cocktails at Dirty Martini — London’s eclectic mix has something for everyone. Beyond its array of entertainment, London is also home to some of the biggest-name designers in the fashion world, so the shopping here is next to none.
Taste the finer things in life across seven floors and 330 departments covering the best of the best in food, fashion, homeware, and more with a visit to the world-renowned Harrods. Then, head to Bond Street or Mayfair to continue browsing luxury goods to your heart’s content.
Return flight: N/A
Luxury accommodation: From £263pp per night for a 5* hotel
3. “It was called the city of lilies” — Florence
Along with its charms, Florence also has a trendy vibe blossoming. The city offers streets of shopping, beautiful museums, and bright architecture. The city is also credited to a number of famous designer names, like Gucci and Salvatore Ferragamo.
Florence is filled with local markets and family-taught leather craftsmen, which means it’s the perfect place to find a unique accessory. If you prefer your adornments to have a little more glitter than leather affords, head to Ponte Vecchio for jewellery sets with precious gemstones unlike anywhere else in the world.
If sight-seeing is a must for you, be sure to visit the rooftop bar of The Grand Hotel Baglioni or the Torre Guelfa Hotel for an incomparable view of the city.
Return flight: Business class return from £448.64*
Luxury accommodation: From £157pp per night for a 5* hotel
2. “The streets of Vienna are paved with culture” — Vienna
Austria’s capital city is filled with sight-seeing-worthy buildings too, with gorgeous palaces and historic sites. In the city centre, international brands are available for you to browse and purchase at Tuchlauben, a shopping area in the Goldenes Quartier. If you’re looking for a more local design, Neubaugasse and Kirchengasse have everything you need.
Many readers might class Vienna as the most elegant city of them all, but like Venice, the city lost a couple of points for a lack of fashion shows and fashion designers in this particular study. Still, for those of us more concerned with luxury brands and local designer pieces, Vienna is certainly a hit.
Of course, you can’t visit Vienna without visiting the famous Lindengasse fashion mile. This stretch has a number of small boutiques with independent brands on offer.
Return flight: Business class return from £350*
Luxury accommodation: From £126pp per night for a 5* hotel
1. The city of love — Paris
In a surprise to no one, the city of love takes the top spot in Zalando’s list of the most elegant cities in the world. The city holds one-of-a-kind boutiques in Champs-Élysées, which are pinned along place de la Concorde to the Arc de Triomphe. Don’t miss out on a trip to rue Saint-Honoré for classic and contemporary Parisian designers galore.
Paris is simply a city like no other, and it makes no effort to emulate any other — Paris is a city that envies no other, as other cities envy Paris.
Return flight: Business class return from £468*
Luxury accommodation: From £174pp per night for a 5* hotel
*Based on flights to and from the UK, correct at time of writing.
This article has been researched and created by retailers of mens derby shoes, Frank Wright Shoes.