We know how busy the end of an erasmus/exchange semester can be. Final exams, last papers to deliver, friends’ farewell parties and most of all, the urge to enjoy the city as much as possible before going back home… This definitely doesn’t leave you a lot of time to think about original Christmas present ideas for your family and friends, and this is why we listed out all the coolest and in-vogue places in town where you can find unique gifts.
Whether you are an international student or a Lisboeta who is tired of mainstream Christmas gifts (let’s try to avoid Ikea candles, Sephora bubble-bath or a Zara sweater this year…), you might get inspired by our innovative Santa-Claus suggestions. Here’s where to do your Christmas shopping in Lisbon:
Christmas markets are a great way to find gifts that are truly Christmas-spirited and that we would never think of buying under any other circumstances. Whether they are permanent fairs or temporary Christmas markets, the following addresses guarantee you to find unique, special and cute presents.
The most alternative shopping fare in Lisbon. Held every first weekend of the month at the Taberna das Almas, this trendy market gathers around 100 different rising brands in fashion, handicraftsman, jewellery, and proposes a lot of unique collection pieces and vintage items. This year, for Christmas, the Feira exceptionally opens on the 19 and 20 of December for a promising festive edition.
You might already know LX Factory, the former industrial-factory zone transformed into a hype shopping & leisure temple. There, every Sunday, the LX Market proposes high-quality second-hand pieces, from clothes and accessories to paintings, records, books, etc. On December 13 and 20, the LX Market will also have a Christmas-themed edition with special gifts and food and drinks stalls.
For all types of typical Portuguese goodies and specialties (gourmet products, jewellery, ceramics, vintage or handcraft items, etc…), don’t miss the local Christmas markets in town. The main ones are in the districts of Alfama and Principe Real.
Embaixada : This gorgeous palace located at the heart of the trendy Principe Real district is a must-see shopping spot. The whole building is a retail-store, and each one of its rooms constitutes a small designer shop. There, you can find a bit of everything, but mainly creative accessories, clothes and gadgets from the most hyped brands. From young-designer sunglasses and eco-friendly cosmetics, to tailored-shirts stores or handcrafted jewellery, you can be sure to find truly original Christmas gifts there. Plus, the architecture and decoration of the building itself are definitely worth a visit anyway.
Luvaria Ulisses : Open since 1925, this emblematic Chiado boutique sells unique high-quality, hand-made and locally-made gloves of exceptional design. Gloves are the perfect gift to show somebody that you care and are one of the most useful and Christmas-spirited presents ever, so you can’t go wrong with it. They have 7 different glove sizes and the choices of design are almost infinite, which guarantees you to get the perfect unique pair.
Loja das Conservas : Canning at its finest. This shop offers great canned Portuguese products, whose design is as exciting as the content itself. Offering one of the 300 different types of cans (sardines, tuna, mackerel,…) to your beloved ones is a cute way to join usefulness and creativity in an affordable gift.
Slou Lisbon : Because your father, brother, or boyfriend deserve the most fashionable t-shirts or the dopest sneakers! This menswear store carries the latest collections of trendy brands such as Comme des Garçons SHIRT, Raf Simons, Our Legacy, Nike Sportswear, Common Projects, Frank Leder, Barena, A Kind Of Guise, Gosha Rubchinskiy, Saturdays…
Bettina & Niccolò Corallo : Of course, chocolate in general is a safe bet when it comes to pleasing your family and friends. But chocolate from Bettina & Niccolò pushes the limits of gustative gifts… This small salon offers chocolate and coffee made from a family’s plantation in São Tomé e Príncipe, which ensures you great exotic aromas. Most of their products are made with a minimum of 75% of cocoa, and up to 100% for the real chocolate connoisseurs.
A Vida Portuguesa : Whether you are an Erasmus student or a Portuguese who enjoys typical local products, this famous store will provide you with tons of adorably distinguished gift ideas. Everything they sell is full of history, as all their products are authentic traditional creations from long-established national brands. Food, table accessories, kitchen tools, perfumes, books and all of their other gadgets are iconic merchandises that crossed generations in Portugal and are sold in their original packaging. Success guaranteed.
Typographia : When I say they sell the coolest printed T-shirts in town, I mean it. Their concept consists in gathering the most creative drawings/designs submitted to them by locals (you can submit your own on their website and their designer-team might select it for their collection), which totally reinvents the printed T-shirt. In addition, their T-shirts are made of fine, soft and comfy Portuguese Jersey with a great fit.
And well, if you aren’t from the adventurous type and still haven’t found some inspiration, you can still find something acceptable at Colombo…!