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Where to Shop in Chester - Retail Therapy in a Heritage Setting

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In the Middle Ages, people flocked to Chester’s busy markets to buy leather gloves, woolens, horses, and wine. It’s still a shoppers’ paradise, with big-name stores and quirky independent shops concentrated in a small central area. The eclectic Rows are among England’s finest sights, and have been the retail heart of the city for 700 years. A few miles north, Cheshire Oaks designer outlet village offers incredible bargains.

The Rows

 

Clustered in the city centre, the eye-catching black-and-white Rows are the perfect place to start a shopping spree. Steps lead up from street level to a covered walkway, from where you access a second “row” of shops. Individually owned stores and high-street staples all mingle on these sloping arcades. You’ll find classic fashion at Reiss and Whistles, and one-off gifts and jewelry in independent Harriet & Dee. Look out for sweet little cafés, hidden away between the shops or in the undercrofts.

 

  • Harriet & Dee, 11 Watergate Row, Chester CH1 2LB; Tel: +44 1244 322080; Website: Harriet & Dee

The city centre

 

Several of the central streets are pedestrianized, making for a spacious and peaceful shopping experience. Cobbled Watergate Street is known for specialist boutiques, gift shops, antiques, and art galleries. There’s a concentration of jewelry stores in Eastgate Street, as well as the landmark façade of Browns of Chester. Don’t miss the Chester Cheese Shop on Bridge Street, with over 200 flavors made from cow's, goat's, and sheep milk. Be sure to try crumbly, tangy Cheshire cheese, which was mentioned in the Domesday Book of 1086 AD.

 

  • Watergate Street Gallery, 60 Watergate Street, Chester CH1 2LA; Tel: +44 1244 345698; Website: Watergate Street Gallery
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  • Chester Cheese Shop, 116 Northgate Street, Chester CH1 2HT ; Tel: +44 1244 346240; Website: Chester Cheese Shop

 

Cheshire Oaks Designer Outlet

 

This sprawling, purpose-built designer outlet village lies just 6 miles north of Chester, easily accessible from the city centre. Here, you’ll find over 145 designer brands at prices discounted up to 60 percent. As well as high-end fashion and high-street shops, there's homeware, sporting goods, and luxurious beauty products on offer. Accessories include watches by TAG Heuer and English-crafted leather handbags from Mulberry. Onsite, there are Asian and continental restaurants and an excellent children's playground.

 

  • TAG Heuer, Unit 151, Cheshire Oaks Designer Outlet, Ellesmere Port CH65 9JJ; Tel: +44 151 348 5600; Website: TAG Heuer
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  • Mulberry, Unit 80, Cheshire Oaks Designer Outlet, Ellesmere Port CH65 9JJ; Tel: +44 151 348 5600; Website: Mulberry

 

Grosvenor Shopping Centre

 

Right in the heart of the city, this indoor shopping centre has over 70 stores and is open every day. Edwardian shop fronts lead to a stylish and contemporary mall containing some of the best stores in town. High-street fashion retailers include trendy Topshop and H&M, and there are quality health-and-beauty stores such as Jo Malone. Plus you'll find a wide variety of accessory and jewelry shops.

 

 

The Forum and Chester Market

 

Bargain hunters should head to the Forum Shopping Centre, for discounted goods in a precinct environment. From the Forum, you can access indoor Chester Market, tucked behind the town hall. Over 70 stalls sell everything from fresh fish or clothing, to crafts and haberdashery. Home-baked bread and cakes are tempting, while delis, cheesemongers, and farm produce shops can provide a good-value picnic lunch. Stall holders are all local, and it’s a friendly, down-to-earth place.

 

  • The Forum Shopping Centre, Northgate Street, Chester CH1 2BY; Tel: +44 1244 313824; Website: The Forum Shopping Centre
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  • Chester Market, 6 Princess Street, Chester CH1 2HH; Website: Chester Market