Shopping Holidays

Mix up your annual holiday with a sweet shopping spree. We've scoured the planet for the best buys.

Leather in Buenos Aires

In the Argentine capital, it's all about leather. Pasión Argentina (00 54 11 4777 7550, or online). Ravignani supports indigenous communities in the north of the country by selling a mouth-watering collection of leather bags. Off Calle Florida, Bettina Rizzi at 547 Paraguay (00 54 11 4313 5307, or online here ) might look unprepossessing from the outside, but her made-to-measure leather jackets are famous (bring in a photograph of a style you like). Prices start at £285.

Pearls in Beijing

Geography means that pearls can be a good buy here - Condoleezza Rice buys hers at Sharon's Store (00 86 10 6717 1888) in Hongqiao Market.

Tailor it up in Bangkok

The Thai capital still has some of the best tailors in Asia. Sophia (00 66 2 268 0916) on Oriental Avenue can run up everything from silk evening dresses from £60 to fully lined trousers. Those in the know make sure their visit is long enough to have two fittings. For cheaper shopping, the new Siam Paragon is the largest shopping mall in Southeast Asia.

Rio Jewellery

Brazil's glitziest city is famous for its gemstones, and buying jewellery here is a much cheaper pastime than in Europe. Almost all the main showrooms are in Ipanema, two blocks away from the beach, around Rua Visconde de Pirajá. As well as the well-known H. Stern, you will also find the more contemporary Antonio Bernardo (00 55 21 2523 3192). Still on Rua Visconde de Pirajáa, you'll find Lenny (00 55 21 2523 3796). His bikinis are worn by all the best celebs.

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