When it comes to holiday shopping, Amsterdam has everything a girl could want…and never know she needed…on streets like Haarlemmerstraat near Central Station, Hazenstraat in the Jordaan, and Utrechtstraat, off Rembrandtplein. The Negen Straatjes (Nine Streets) are great for vintage clothing and one-of-a-kind treasures. Nieuwe Spiegelstraat is the street for door-to-door art and antique dealers. Well-funded fashionistas will find favor on P.C. Hoofstraat, Amsterdam’s answer to Rodeo Drive, lined with Tiffany, Cartier, Gucci, Louis Vuitton, Valentino and other designer shops.
Fill in the gaps on your holiday list on Leidsestraat, a pedestrian street intersected by a tram line, with boutiques, department stores and specialty shops. Popular draws include Sissy Boy, Replay, Abercrombie & Fitch, Metz & Co., Cora Kemperman, V & D, Eicholtz and a Henri Willig Cheese shop. Continue north beyond the Bloemenmarkt to Kalverstraat, where mainstays like the ubiquitous H&M, plus Diesel, Mango, Zara, Nike and Marks & Spencer aim to satisfy your every retail dream.
In South Amsterdam, Beethovenstraat has wide sidewalks and big shop windows on an elegant shopping street built in the 1930s. Come for clothes, wine, chocolates, cheese and a more contemporary ambiance than streets in the old City Center offer.
On these and other streets, here are a few of the city’s most unique boutiques:
Jordino: Spiked Chocolate
Chocolate can be a girl’s best friend, and Jordino pumps up the action by turning the beloved confection into spike heels. Since 1993, the family-owned shop has been crafting shoes you can eat from fine cocoa products. Alongside the pumps, 90 varieties of chocolates, some infused with liqueurs, plus cream truffles, decadent cakes and 24 kinds of macaroons will tempt your sweet tooth. For a personalized gift, send in a photo to appear on a delicacy commemorating a wedding, birth, anniversary or any other special occasion.
I Love Vintage: Chic Retro
If retro fashion is your bag, find ample selections from the roaring ’20s to the hip ’60s at this stylish shop on the Prinsengracht. New, vintage-inspired dresses, blouses, skirts, jackets, sweaters, boots, bags, lingerie and swimwear that replicate styles of the past are available in the store, as well as the online shop. The store’s ollections include yellow polka dot swimsuits, curve-hugging retro frocks, Twiggy skirts and ’50s pin-up couture.
Nana: Movin’ to the Beat
Girls (and their boyfriends) who just wanna have fun can find satisfaction at Nana on Warmoesstraat, in the Red Light District. Self-described as “the most vibrating shop,” the store sports a rainbow of colorful vibrators and other adult sex toys in an attention-grabbing window display. Bring home an OmiBod toy that will bring you to new heights as you move to the beat of your favorite iPod playlist.
The Condomerie: Colorful STD Protection
What better way to show you care than to tuck some colorful birth control/STD protection from the Condomerie into your boyfriend’s holiday stocking? Turn his dick into Santa, the devil, a black cactus, the Statue of Liberty, or opt for a Trial Pack that lets you experiment with condom brands, sizes and textures. Size does matter here, and you can order custom condoms based on measurements you submit of your guy’s erect penis (directions available online).