CHENNAI

Shopping

Shopping in Chennai


Shopping malls

  • Ampa Mall. A new shopping mall in Chennai with both western and Indian brands featuring in the shops. Most popular for its PVR Cinemas multiplex, Star Bazaar grocery store and one of the few McDonald's in the city. It also has a food court and a boutique hotel.
  • Chennai Citi Center10, Radhakrishnan Salai. Opened in March of 2006, it houses mostly men's western-wear brands like Adidas, Louis Philippe, Parx and Zodiac. Has a good food court, an Indian restaurant, INOX cinema and a supermarket.
  • Express AvenueRoyapettah High Rd.. It is the second largest shopping mall in South India and features unique stores like Hamley's, Global Desi and Peekaboo, designer wear like Guess and Diesel and high-street chains like Body Shop, Tie Rack, Esprit and Lush. It has a few fine-dining restaurants and also one of the largest food courts in India. Escape Cinemas, a 40000 sqft, 8 screen multiplex is located on the 3rd floor. Local youth usually abbreviate the name to EA, from the huge sign on the building entrance.
  • Ispahani CenterNungambakkam Road.. An early shopping centre - has a cafe, bar & shops.
  • Phoenix Market city. At Velachery with approximately 2.40 million square foot (including 0.45 million square foot of parking) of developable area. In addition to the usual Market City components, Market City Chennai is expected to include an IT park.
  • Prince PlazaPantheon Road, Egmore. It has been featured in many movies.
  • Shoppers' Stop2, Harrington Rd, Chetpet.. This is one of the largest department stores in Chennai, and you can buy everything from clothes to shoes to books here.
  • Spencer Plaza, 769, Anna Salai.. Spencer is a Chennai landmark that dates back to colonial times. The original was destroyed in a fire, and the current building dates back to 1983. The new Phase III section even has a mock Indo-Saracenic atrium in the style of the original. One of the earliest shopping malls in India, it has slightly lost its charm with the arrival of swanky new malls, but it is still an excellent place to buy handicrafts, ethnic wear, Indian jewellery and books (it houses the largest Landmark bookstore in Chennai). There is a reasonably good food court on the 2nd level of Phase I and Phase III.
  • Stores on Doors,  +91 44 65158534. Online shopping service. Good quality grocery and farm-fresh vegetables and fruits with free same day delivery.

Books

Chennai has a wide selection of rare books and maps in the many second-hand book stalls.

  • Alwar's Roadside bookshop. Opposite Kamadhenu theatre in Mylapore.
  • Bookfield (opposite the LIC building on Anna Salai, Mount Road). 
  • Higginbothams. Anna Salai.
  • Kennedys Book House. Anna Salai.
  • Vendors near the Central Station
  • Vendors on Mount Rd outside Devi Theatre and the GPO (General Post Office)

For more current publications:

  • GigglesConnemara Hotel Binny Rd. General books from a friendly shop keeper.
  • Landmark. Spencers Plaza, Anna Salai (Mount Rd) - Books, Toys, CD's, 4 locations:
    • Spencer Plaza, Anna Salai (Mount Road) - 37,000 sq. ft.
    • Apex Plaza, Nungambakkam High Road - 12,000 sq. ft. - The original store.
    • Chennai Citi Centre, Radhakrishnan Salai.
    • Ampa Mall, Injambakkam- newest location.
  • Odyssey. Behind Gandhi Nagar Bus Stand, Adyar and Express Avenue,Royapettah

Book Fair:

  • Chennai Book Fair (annual). 10th Jan to 22nd Jan 2014, YMCA Grounds, Anna Salai, Nandanam. Location and dates may vary annually. If you happen to be in Chennai in January, Chennai Book Fair is an event not to miss. Plan to visit on a weekday as they attract lesser crowds and you can browse through the collections peacefully. If you pick a weekend or holiday, try to visit in the morning instead of the evening. Look through all the shops but it is usually better to skip the marquee stalls and visit the smaller ones which have books stacked all around. You will be rewarded with some great finds as these shops have lesser known but excellent titles from all around the world. Carry cash as many of the smaller shops do not accept credit/debit cards and cash also helps to bargain down the price of the books to some extent. On average, paperback novels in bargain shops cost ₹100 to ₹200. A budget of ₹3000 (around $50) should be enough to purchase a good collection of books.

Clothes

  • Amaara (amaarashop), 27/14, C V Raman Road, Alwarpet,  +91 44 4500 0020, e-mail: . Boutique clothing from natural fabrics for women.
  • Brass Tacks+91 44 4208 1767. 77/13, Corporation Shopping Complex, C.P. Ramaswamy Rd, Alwarpet. Contemporary clothing from natural fibres for women.
  • FabIndia3 Woods Rd. The Ilford House location at is probably the best in terms of choices and selections. This is the place to go for all your natural-dyed, hand loomed and hand made textiles. The prices have been going up the last few years, but FabIndia is the only source for this sort of textile in Chennai at any retail outlet.
  • Handloom Exhibitions. Year-round there is always a handloom exhibition profiling the work of one state or the other. These temporary installations (you'll have to check the local papers to find out where they set up) generally have a good selection of interesting fabrics and textile products. And there is always the option to bargain, which makes it a better bet than oft-overpriced retail stores. The Royapettah YMCA (across from Royapettah Hospital) has a regular handloom exhibition.
  • Just Casuals,  +91 44 28273882. Nungambakkam, 1, Sterling Rd. A good place to head if you're in the mood for the Banana Republic/Abercrombie/Old Navy/Gap type stuff. They seem to get all the export rejects or overstocks. You'll find that all the brand tags are cut out due to some agreement with the manufacturer. The quality and prices are good, but unfortunately there's no bargaining possible.
  • Raymond shop162 Anna Salai (Opposite to Spencers). There are several outlets of Raymond shop around Chennai. Custom tailored shirts, suits and other wardrobe accessories for men.
  • Shanti Colony. Annanagar is a hub for "seconds" clothing as in the above description for "Just Casuals".

Crafts

  • AmethystSundar Mahal, Padmavathi Rd, Jeypore Colony, Gopalapuram.+91 44 2820 3582. They sell handicrafts.
  • Ashvita - Arts and Artifacts11 2nd St Radhakrishnan Salai, Mylapore.+91 44 2847 6063. Art, jewellery, photo prints.
  • Crafts and Weaves#1, 1st Main Road, CIT Colony, Mylapore.,  +91 44 2466 0232. Handicrafts.
  • Giri Stores. Adjacent to Kabaleeswarar Temple, (opposite the Radha Silk Emporium, Mylapore Tank). Hindu spiritual items like Rudraksha garlands, books, CDs & tapes for chanting, incense sticks, camphor and lamps.
  • Hidesign. Ispahani Centre, Nungambakkam High Rd & Phase 3, Spencers Plaza. Leather goods.
  • Jidoka Store1st Lane, Nungambakkam High Rd,  +91 44 2822 3516, +91 44 2822 3317. Handicrafts.
  • Manasthala12 Cenotaph Rd,  +91 44 2433 2842. Terracotta ceramics.
  • Poombukar108 Anna Salai, Plandmark (opposite the LIC building in Annasalai and next to Higgingbothams book store). They sell handicrafts.
  • Poppat JamalsMount Rd Anna Salai (opp. Spencers Plaza). Crockery.
  • Victoria Technical Institute180, (old No.765) Anna Salai (Close to Spencer Plaza),  +91-44-2852 3141. 10AM to 7:30PM. They have a huge display of handicraft items, paintings, wood carvings and metal work statues.₹20 to any amount.
  • Vimonisha Art Gallery12 Khadar Nawaz Khan Rd. Handicrafts.

Art galleries

  • Apparao Galleries7th St, Wallace Garden.,  +91 44 2827 226.
  • Chennai Studio222 Peters Rd,  +91 44 98405 43420. Royapettah.
  • Contemporary arts and crafts showroom41 CP Ramaswamy Rd+91 44 2499 7069, +91 44 2466 0159. Alwarpet
  • Lakshmi Ethiraj Art Gallery70 1st Main Rd,  +91 44 4359 223. CIT Nagar.
  • Prakrit Art GalleryDhandayuthapani Nagar, 2nd St, Kotturpuram.,  +91 44 42188989.
  • Raasi Art Gallery1 Anna Ave,  +91 44 2441 0389. Bakthavatsala Nagar, Adayar.

Sarees

  • Aavaranaa15, Ashoka Street, Alwarpet.,  +91 44 24988292.
  • Co-Optex, No.350, Pantheon Road, Egmore, Chennai - 600008. (Close by Govt Museum and Connemara library),  +91 44 28193175. State government operated store. Good place to buy authentic silk sarees and dhotis. They also sell other items like salwar sets, curtains, bedsheets, pillow covers etc.
  • Radha Silk Emporium (Rasi). Silk sarees, ethnic wear, arts & crafts in multiple locations.
    • 1 Sannadhi St, Mylapore,  +91 44 2494 1906
    • 827, Dhun Building, Mount Rd,  +91 44 2852 0251
    • 23 1st Main Rd, Nanganallur,  +91 44 2232 4176
  • Revathy StoresNo. 7/8, RK Mutt Rd (Luz Bazaar Building),  +91 44 24934328. Small store with a wide variety of Kalyani and Indian hand-loomed sarees.
  • Shilpi29 C.P. Ramaswamy Rd. Alwarpet.
  • Vardhrams and Son's Silks. Harington Rd, Chetpat.

Jewellery

  • Aarthi Thanga Maligai60 East Kalamandapam Rd. Royapuram. Gold for reasonable prices.
  • Aishwarya Jewellery. Mylapore Tank. Gold and silverware.
  • B.B Jewellery6/127 Arcot Rd. Porur. Specializing in gold.
  • Bapalal Jewellers. Kakani Towers, Cathedral Road. Diamond merchants.
  • Jaipur Gems50 Cathedral Rd. Exclusive designer StarFire Diamond jewellery, authentic Jadau jewellery.
  • Joyalukkas39 North Usman Rd. T'Nagar. India's largest exclusive jewellery mall, housing the worlds largest jewellery showroom of international retailer Joyalukkas amongst other world renowned retailers.
  • Jugalkishore Jewellers. CP Ramaswaamy Road, Alwarpet. Traditional and antique jewellery.
  • Kanishk. Usman Road, T'Nagar. Great value for money & wide range.
  • N. Gopaldas. Jewellers since 1929, New No. 59, Dr. Radhakrishnan Salai, Mylapore. For exclusive diamond jewellery.
  • Narayana Pearls. Good collection. Kasi Arcade, T.Nagar.
  • Rasvihar. 138 Luz Church Road, Mylapore, Chennai - 600 004. For exclusive contemporary jewellery.
  • Tanishq100 Ft Bypass Road, Near Velachery Lake, Velachery (close to Phoenix Market City mall). From the house of Titan. Gold, Diamond and Platinum jewelery. Trendy collections, transparent pricing and clear billing. Tanishq also operates other outlets in Adyar, Anna Nagar and T.Nagar
  • Vummidi Bangaru Jewellery. Nungambakkam, Features diamonds and gold. There is also a location T'Nagar.

Musical instruments

  • Lakshman shruthi. Vadapalani Signal, Vadapalani. Musical instruments, CDs.
  • Sapthaswara Musicals. Features Western and Indian musical instruments.
  • Shruthi Musicals10 Harleys Rd,  +91 44 2660 3630. Kilpauk.
  • Sruthilayais93 Royapettah High Rd. Mylapore,  +91 44 2499 4045,+91 44 2498 2625. Musical instruments.

In addition to these there are several exhibitions at Das Community Hall (Cathedral Rd), Shankara Hall (TTK Rd) where artisans display their work. Check the local newspapers for details and timings.

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