Seville's Main Shopping District
Tiendas del centro
main shopping area in the center are the two parallel streets
Sierpes and Tetuan. Here
you will find stores for just about everything: men's and
women's clothing, shoes, ceramics, sporting goods, jewelry,
posters and some of the general tourist stuff. The streets
begin (or end) at Plaza Nueva/Plaza San Francisco where
the "Ayuntamiento" (Town Hall) is located. From
this direction you can head down Avenida Constitución
to the cathedral. The other end of Sierpes and Tetuan leads
to La Campana and Plaza del Duque, where El Corte Inglés
is located. This shopping district also spills out into
the side streets going towards the Alfalfa and a few streets
towards the river. Sierpes and Tetuan are often the best
places to find clothing for such brands at such stores as
Zara. A large bookstore, appropriately named La Casa del
Libro, is located on Tetuan sells about anything you could
want including guidebooks, literature and fiction in English.
Passing La Campana you can also head up Calle Laraña
and find a few clothing and electronics stores.
Other Shopping Areas
Tiendas del centro
The central shopping district is of course not an exact area and you can spend a lot of time wandering around the side streets to find interesting shops. Some of the areas below are a little further away or just outside of the city, but worth mentioning for the commercial activity.
Avenida Constitucion - a number of shops mixed with cafes can be found along the now pedestrain avenue which runs from Plaza Nueva past the Cathedral.
Alameda - the streets of Amor de Dios and Trajano, as well as some side streets have several local shops, including some second hand stores.
Calle Feria - filled with local shops for every day needs, furniture and more. Also home to the Thursday morning "antiques" market, which is a mix of antiques and junk really.
Los Remedios - more upscales shops including plenty of clothing boutiques, gift stores and more. The Calle Asuncion as well as Republica Argentina are popular spots.
Luis Montoto - running from Puerta Carmona to Nervion, this large street has a wide variety of stores which is difficult to classify.
Nervion - centered around El Corte Ingles and Nervion Plaza, there are also many shops located on the streets around this area.
Triana - around the Triana market there are plenty of ceramics shops. Other stores can be found on calle San Jacinto and then over to Calle Pages del Corro.
Camas and Aljarafe - home to several larger free standing stores accesible by bus or car, such as Ikea, Leroy Merlin (large hardware store) Carrefour (grocery and department store), Decathalon (sporting goods), PC City (computers) and more.
El Corte Inglés and Department Stores
El Corte Inglés
El Corte Inglés gets a separate mention because of the central location and the fact that it has just about everything: clothes,
furniture, grocery store (with many hard to find food items),
travel agents, tobacco shop, jewelry, tourist items, leather,
hardware, perfume, toiletries, barber, cafe, optician...the
list goes on and on. There are three main locations where
you can find this department store: Plaza del Duque,
Plaza Magdalena and Nervión.
In the center there are two locations: Plaza del Duque you
will find the the main location including clothing, tourist
gifts, books, sporting goods, a grocery store, a gourmet
foods store, bakery, luggage, watches, jewelry, perfumes
and toiletries. Across the plaza is another El Corte Inglés
location with music, movies, cameras, computer equipment
and accessories, paper/office supplies, mobile phones, audio
and video (TV, VCR, DVD, stereo) and much more. Just down
the street there is yet another El Corte Inglés location
in the Plaza de la Magdalena where you will find kitchen
ware, computer equipment and accessories, appliances, mobile
phones, a supermarket, audio and video (TV, VCR, DVD, stereo)
and more. Across Plaza Magdalena is the home department
with beds and bedding, furniture, etc.. The location
in Nervión has all of the above under one roof and
is also next to a centro comercial, or mall. Basically
El Corte Inglés has it all between the three locations
and many locations overlap in their offerings. What the
store doesn't have are the best prices for everything, but
most things are reasonable. The big sales in most stores
generally occur in July and January.
As you work your way to the outskirts of Sevilla or just outside the larger department stores can be found. The French chain Carrefour offers a little of everything much like El Corte Ingles, although perhaps less in the high end range of items. Carrefour includes a large grocery store, clothing, toys, electronics, home accessories and more. Hipercor is the El Corte Ingles version of Carrefour, with a large supermarket and a general selection of what El Corte Ingles carries. And there is also a large El Corte Ingles itself. Finally, Alcampo and Eroski offer a similar selection of items.
El Corte Inglés
El Corte Inglés
There are very few reasons to want to see a mall in Seville
seeing as we are the kings of malls in the U.S. My reasons
for going here are: air-conditioning on those 45° days,
or a warm, dry place on those rainy winter days; seeing a
movie as the best theatre close to the center is in a mall
called Nervión Plaza, eating at La Casa de
Costillas when I'm missing the U.S., again in Nervión
Plaza. There are 3 malls which I know of, or at least
can recommend if you need to go:
Plaza de Armas
Located in the old Córdoba Train station across from
the bus station this is the smallest of the bunch but the
easiest to get to in the center. There is a McDonald's
and a movie theatre, as well as La Fabrica de Cerveza,
one of the only brew-pubs I know of in Seville. Foster's
Hollywood serves up American food in an Applebee's
atmosphere and there is a Mercadona, a large
supermarket, on the bottom floor. A number of chain restaurants,
including Mexican and Italian, are just outside in the plaza.
There are also a number of small
shops inside and it has the charm and history of the architecture
going for it. Just across the street is another movie theatre,
Avenida 5 Cines, with V.O. movies (subtitled
with the original language audio). The location is also close
to the river if you plan to hit the bars or Triana when the
heat dies down.
The second closest to the center, although expect a 15-20
minute walk depending on where you're coming from. From the
Puerta Carmona head straight and follow the remnants of the
roman aqueducts in the middle of the avenue. The mall is similar
to a mall in the U.S.: the indoor shops, a McDonald's
within an actual food court that of course includes video
games. The other main El Corte Inglés
location is here as well. In Nervión Plaza you'll find
TGI Fridays, which unfortunately replaced the Casa de Costillas (Ribs) some years ago. There are of course all of the shops and clothing stores you would expect in a mall, many of which can be found in the city center. Next there is Cines Nervión,
20 screen movie theatre and you can buy your tickets over
the internet with reserved seating for most shows. Late-afternoon
and early evening you can take your pick of illegal vendors
below selling a lot of crafts and trinkets from Latin America
as well as pirated CDs and DVDs. The only downside to Nervión
Plaza for me is personal: it's located next to Estadio Sanchez
Pizuan, home of Sevilla Fútbol Club and of course Betis'
biggest rival. Aside from keeping myself from vomiting while
passing the stadium I do like this mall.
Further out and requiring a bus ride is Los Arcos.
Like every other mall here it has a McDonalds,
a movie theatre and a food court. The inside is eerily similar
to a mall layout of 10 years ago in the US. Many department
stores as well as some smaller shops, and if you've been to
Nervión Plaza you've likely seen most of the same stores.
Hipercor, owned by El Corte Inglés,
is located in the mall. Hipercor is a little, or really a
lot, of everything: a large supermarket, plus hardware, electronics,
plants, household items and more. Almost all of the restaurants
located in Los Arcos are the same chains as in Nervión
Plaza. A few notable differences are a Disney Store as well as a Toys R Us location. While it's not an overly dangerous location, do keep an eye on your belongings
when outside of the mall.
Located on the other side of the river from the center
is Los Remedios. Upon arriving at the Plaza de Cuba you
can head down the first street to your left, Asuncion and
there are plenty of shops to choose from. Heading down any
of the main avenues you will run into a lot of Seville's
finer boutiques. If you are looking for later night shopping
thee is both and Opencor and VIPS
location right next to each other. Opencor has more food
plus a selection of a bit of everything. VIPS has more books
and press, with a little food plus a cafeteria which serves
up food late into the night. Both are now owned by the mega-giant
corporation of El Corte Inglés, and both are open
until about 1 or 2 in the morning. It's a good thing they're
here because otherwise Los Remedios is a neighborhood without
a soul. It's modern with larger, uglier buildings that have
no style and straight streets which form perfect square
blocks. It is also a richer neighborhood, as you can often
tell by the people walking around. My apologies to those
living there - I'm sure there are is some convenience to
this neighborhood, as well as great places to eat and surely
nicer apartments. As a visitor most of you will see it lacks
the charm of Triana and the center of the city.
Open Air Markets in Seville
One way to find interesting gifts or just about anything else
is to try one of the open-air markets around Seville. Some
are located in plazas many days a week, while others are once
a week events, generally on Sundays. Many informal (i.e.:
illegal) street vendors can be found around the main shopping
district - Calles Tetuan and Sierpes - as well as Nervión
Plaza. They sell everything from Latin American crafts, scarves,
necklaces and sunglasses to pirated music and movies. It is
not uncommon to see a mass exodus once the police arrive on
the scene. The following is a list of the markets, what they
sell, where they are located and on what days you will find
them open. Someday soon the guidebooks will catch on that
the Alameda market is no longer there, but they seem to have
enjoyed publishing this out of date information for several
years in a row now.
Guadalquivir River (Torneo)
Sadly the city center version of this market was closed in
late October 2005. It has now returned, but along the river
in the Torneo section of the city. Much less central and much
less easy to visit. Say you want
to buy a duck, but where to go? But really, this market has
more dogs, cats, parrots and parakeets than anything else.
You'll also find fish (the kind you take home in a bowl, not
the kind you eat), lizards, rabbits, gerbils, chinchillas
and a few other strange animals. You can also pick up bird
cages and lots of other pet care supplies. Most people are
here to look at and pet the dogs and cats, and it can be a
tight squeeze when going through the middle of the market.
Still want to know more? Take a photo
tour of the market when it was still in the Alfalfa.
Plaza del Cabildo
(Constitución) So many things to collect and so little
time. Here you will find mainly stamps and coins, but other
items such as pins, semi-precious stones, antique watches,
military medals and even phone cards (yes, they collect those,
too!). You can also enjoy the surroundings in the Plaza, which
is a site to see even when the market isn't there. Many of
the people selling coins and stamps have stores within the
plaza as well. Take a photo
tour of the market.
Charco de la Pava
Sadly this market was moved from the Alameda a few years ago
and is now far from the center. It has a little bit of everything,
and a lot of junk. Looking for a blue glass doorknob to match
the others in your apartment, or an old PC that doesn't work?
Well here you may find it. Also here: carved wooden masks
and figures from Africa, clothes, old videos and magazines,
tools, a few vegetable and olive vendors and pirated music
Art and Paintings
Plaza del Museo
Down the street from El Corte Inglés in the center
and next to the Museum of Bellas Artes you can find paintings
and sketches as well as a few other pieces from local artists.
They range in styles and scenes, from your typical Sevillano
patio realistically brought to life to an abstract of who
knows what. There are some really good works to see and on
a nice day it's like visiting a big outdoor gallery. Take
tour of the market.
One of the oldest markets in Seville has been setting up shop
in Calle Feria for hundreds of years. Plenty of antiques,
including a few pieces of furniture, ceramics, fixtures, paintings,
coins, glassware, accessories, old video game (home) systems,
computer parts, books, clothing, toys, posters. Plenty of
junk as well but less so than the flea market in Charco de
la Pava. Ever since the flea market moved further out of town
it appears a few vendors prefer to show up here with their
junk. Take a photo
tour of the market.
Plaza del Duque
Thursday, Friday and Saturday all day
Known to many as the "hippie market", it is located
in front of the main El Corte Inglés location in the
center. Here you can find belts, shirts, scarves, leather
goods, jewelry, wooden boxes, small sculptures, pipes and
a few other miscellaneous goods. Watch your own stuff as you
shop, or it may end up in the Alameda the next week as a "second-hand
good" if you're not careful.
Plaza de la Magdalena
Thursday, Friday and Saturday all day
More of an African fell here it's located in the plaza next
to the other El Corte Inglés location in the center.
Common goods from Africa are leather bags, belts, and drums
as well as some jewelry, scarves are other clothing. It is
smaller than the market in Plaza del Duque.
Antiques can be found in many shops throughout Seville. Although
the shopkeepers may not think so, many are fun to use as informal
museums. The type varies from a little of everything, to those
specializing in paintings or furniture. There are three areas
in Seville where you'll have the most luck:
In the main shopping district around Calle Sierpes and Tetuan
there are plenty of stores to choose from. Wandering down
some of the side streets from Sierpes towards the Alfalfa
you will find stores offering everything from furniture, ceramics,
paintings and tapestries.
The Alfalfa area also has a number of shops to choose from.
Calle Cabeza del Don Pedro has a good selection of shops with
antique furniture and art.
El Jueves is the oldest market in Seville on Calle Feria.
Every Thursday from early morning until about 2pm vendors
set-up shop. While many of the offerings are of lesser quality
and certainly not antiques, you can find a number of items
which fit the category and maybe even come away with a steal.
This is more of a flea market atmosphere than anything else.
are plenty of book stores to chose from in Seville, many
are smaller and specialize in older , collectable editions.
If you are looking for something in English there are a
few places I would recommend. First is the Casa
del Libro, a four-story building located on Calle
Tetuan. On the second floor (up the stairs and to your right)
they sell fiction, literature, guidebooks and Spanish class
textbooks, all for the English speaker. El Corte
Inglés also has a number of the same books
in the Plaza del Duque location, although with a more limited
selection. Finally, you can pick up a few odd (used) books
in a store in Barrio Santa Cruz just off Calle Mateos Gago
where Bar Las Columnas is located. Of course many tourist
shops carry photo and guide books in a variety of languages
for you to take back home. These same shops may also have
a few pieces of typical tourist literature in English such
as works by Cervantes, Ernest Hemingway or the ever popular
El Cid (author unknown).
on what you are looking for I would recommend two locations.
For the higher priced (and generally better quality)
ceramics you can find three very nice shops on Calle Sierpes:
Sevillarte, Cerámica Aracena
and Martian: Cerámica de
Sevilla. Coming from Plaza San Francisco all will
be on your left on Calle Sierpes. Sevillarte also has a
location in Barrio Santa Cruz between Calles Agua and Vida.
Across the river in Triana you can
find 8-10 stores which also sell ceramics, some with a much
larger selection than what you will find in the center.
Once you cross the Triana bridge take a right, walk about
100 yards and start looking to your left. Stores are here
as well as down a little side street. Many will offer much
better prices on the comparative pieces. The quality and
styles range here, and tend to differ from what you see
on Sierpes. You can pick up that cheaper, typical Spanish
ceramic gift or find something with a more original style
depending on the store. A few are larger, almost warehouse
type stores, while others have more of a gallery feel. You
can even get a glimpse of some of the artists working on
pieces in the shop.
Clothing and shoes
Ropa y zapatos
By far the best place to go is the main shopping district
of Sierpes and Tetuan. Especially on Calle Tetuan you will
find a number of boutiques and larger name-brand stores.
Zara is by far the most well-known of the
group, with two stores located within 100 yards of each
other. Cover the rest of Tetuan and you'll find just about
everything you need. A larger sports and apparel shop is
on Calle Sierpes towards the Plaza San Francisco. Around
Calle San Eloy you will find El Caballo,
which specializes in higher-end leather goods, such as shoes,
belts and wallets as well as formal wear. On both sides
of Calle Laraña you will also find some women's clothing
stores, as well as a few more just past La Plaza de la Encarnación.
El Corte Inglés has just about everything,
including Levi's and man other popular brands such as Polo
Ralph Lauren, Tommy Hilfiger, etc.
If there's one thing Spaniards can't get enough of it's
shoes. An easy way to spot a tourist is by looking at what's
on their feet. If you feel the need to upgrade for a night
out head towards Plaza El Salvador. Between the plaza and
the Alfalfa is what I've dubbed la calle de los zapatos,
or "The Street of Shoes". Located on a side
street to the left of the Iglesia Salvador, Calle Sagasta,
as it is better known, has a number of shoe stores of varying
quality. Prices range from 10-200€, depending on the
make and quality. On Sierpes and Tetuan as well as in El
Corte Inglés you can also find something to fit your
feet. For fans of the Camper brand there
is a Camper store on Calle Tetuan, but you will also find
several stores in the city which carry a selection of the
Small Appliances and Accessories
Aparatos electrónico, ordenadores
If you want it easy and are looking for electronics such
as stereos, televisions, computers, small appliances, digital
cameras or accessories your best bet will generally be the
El Corte Inglés locations in Plaza
del Duque (across from the the main store) or in Plaza Magdalena.
Both offer a mix, with some items overlapping. In general
you would head to the Plaza Magdalena location for small
appliances (including kitchen wares), stereos, televisions,
VCRs and DVD players. Also there are any of the cables and
accessories you'll need to hook them up. A smaller selection
of computers, digital cameras and PDAs are here as well.
For computers and digital cameras (and accessories) as well
as DVDs and CDs head to the location in el Duque (across
the plaza from the main location). They sell many of the
media cards used in digital cameras, MP3 players and PDAs.
El Corte Inglés tends to be expensive, although there
are sales from time to time which make things affordable.
Another location with a good selection is a store on Calle
Laraña, Phillips Ultra Radio, although
I am not thrilled with the folks working in the store. There
are also a number of smaller stores selling a limited selection
of appliances, televisions and the like. Some can be found
on side streets off Calle Laraña, including Santa
Maria Gracia and Lope de Vega. Others are throughout the
city and you'll have to look for them. Outside el Centro
you can find large selections of everything in the Sam's/Walmart
type stores of Carrefour or Hipercor
(owned by El Corte Inglés). If you are a fan of the
brand Sony then check out the Sony store
on calle Amador de los Rios, just outside of Puerta Carmona.
They sell everything - computers, televisions, VCRs, DVDs,
stereos - all of course by Sony.
Now if you are looking for cheaper computer equipment,
especially accessories, consumables, and hardware, I do
recommend heading out to some of the smaller shops. There
are a so many which have popped up and you can find one
about every 3-4 blocks if you look hard enough. Some are
individually owned while others are part of franchises and
offer catalogs. Many will beat El Corte Inglés in
pricing by frightening amounts: an example being a package
of DVD+R which cost 60 Euros in the large department store
versus 28 Euros in a small store. That's a 30 Euro or more
difference and enough to make you pretty damn mad at El
Corte Inglés. Beware that some places are not as
cheap, so walk around a bit, pop in the store and take a
look at the prices.
When it comes to affordable audio and video accessories
such as cables, I have two recommendations: R.C.O.
is in Triana on calle Pages del Corro. They have four storefronts
offering cables/electronic accessories, audio/video equipment,
computers and something else I can't remember. On calle
Amador de los Rios, again just outside of Puerta Carmona,
you will find Televoz which is my favorite
store when I need something I can't find anywhere else.
Take a number as there is generally a wait. But it's worth
it - they sell just about anything you can imagine in the
world of cables and hard to find accessories. Tell them
what you want and they will go in the back room and come
out (hopefully) with what you need.
The first thing many visitors ask when they pass a ferreteria
is, "Do they sell ferrets?". While a logical
conclusion in "Spanglish", these places are more
the typical mom and pop small hardware stores. There are
many smaller stores located almost every few blocks, and
the merchandise will vary depending on the store. Some will
have a specialty while others will have a little of everything.
A few offer camping gear while others may offer some cookware.
Many of them are the opposite of the Home Depot hardware
experience: most of the merchandise is located behind the
counter and you need to work with the shopkeeper to get
what you want. While you may end up waiting in line there
is a certain advantage to this over trying (usually unsuccessfully)
to find someone who can help you in Home Depot. The down
side is you may need some Spanish speaking skills and it
can be frustrating if you just want to grab what you need
off the rack and make your way to the cashier. If you need
a place which has everything you probably know what I am
going to recommend...El Corte Inglés!
In the Plaza Magdalena location on the second floor you
can find the hardware section. If you can get out of the
center than head to Leroy Merlin, which
is so similar to Home Depot that I thought I was back in
the states on my first visit. I think they organize the
rows of shelves exactly the same way. They have everything
you can imagine to remodel your house, garden, etc.
It's not uncommon to hear a song while visiting and want
to locate the disk. (Yes, people still purchase music from
time to time). While I'm not likely to be of help in telling
you who the artist is I can tell you where to go to find
the CD. As it stands there are two good options in the center.
I've already mentioned above that the Plaza del Duque location
for El Corte Inglés (across the
plaza from the main store) has a selection of CDs and DVDs.
You could also find CDs in the same plaza at Sevilla
Rock, but they have now closed for good.
Compás Sur in the Alfalfa on calle Cuesta
del Rosario has a very good selection of flamenco on CD.
On calle Amor de Dios there is a locally owned store, as
well as a few up the side street. Some also sell old vinyl
if you are into records. If you know what you want and can
locate it online on Amazon.com in the US
it is often cheaper to wait until you get back. As well,
Amazon in the UK also offers a wide selection and cheaper
shipping. All said above, you can also find incredibly low
prices on the street if you don't have a problem with buying
pirated versions. The sound quality may vary but often times
you can get the latest and greatest thing from a vendor
in an open air market (one of the flea markets) or on Tetuan
or near Nervión plaza.
The number of bands, as in marching or processional bands,
in Sevilla ensures a healthy business and choice for musicians.
Of course there are no guitars in these marching bands but
the tradition of flamenco takes care of your worries about
finding a guitar or accessories. We'll start with percussion
where you will find Tam Tam on calle Jesús
del Gran Poder to be a valuable resource. If they can't
cover you then check out Más Percussion
on calle Antonia Díaz. Casa Damas
on Asunción in Los Remedios offers a wide selection
of instruments. At the end of calle Zaragoza in el Arenal
you will find a store selling hand made acoustic guitars.
Near El Corte Inglés
on a corner of Plaza de la Gavidia there is also a shop
for those with a taste for the electric: guitar, bass, etc.
This is a large category as you'll find a lot of possible
gifts in stores that aren't considered your typical gift
store. Anywhere around the Cathedral you will find the normal
store and you might get taken for a few Euros if you're
not careful. They sell everything from key chains, t-shirts,
hats, ceramics, abanicos (fans), posters, post
cards and film. You'll also see a lot of stores throughout
Santa Cruz selling the same stuff. Take
note that a lot of the same merchandise can be purchased
in the main El Corte Inglés location
in Plaza del Duque, sometimes with similar or better prices.
Sierpes also has a few stores and on Calle Tetuan you'll
find La Rosa Negra, a store similar to
Spencer's in the U.S. with a few unusual items. I still
wouldn't call this a tourist gift store. One of the cheapest
places to get these types of items is often in a tienda
de veinte duros or todo a cien.
These are "dollar stores" which sell just
about anything. Some have a wider selection of the tourist
gifts, while some sell pretty useless junk. I must confess
I have a weak spot for these stores and have a hard time
not wandering in off the street. Friends and family are
often dragging me out of them.
Worth a mention is the arrival of Ikea
in Sevilla, or at least just outside of Sevilla in Castilleja.
It's now almost been a year since the grand opening and
buses in Plaza de Armas will get you there. Just be prepared
for complete chaos, especially if you make the trip on the
weekend. Most of you know what you get with Ikea - modern
furniture at bargain prices because you must spend hours
and hours putting it together with a hex wrench and perhaps
a screwdriver. The price is very good, but what you don't
pay for you lose in sweat and frustration. A large piece
of furniture will also set you back about 30 Euros or so
for home delivery.