a review by P RASMUSSEN
Shopping is a fabulous way to get around and experience Apia but it can often be trying especially in the heat. Here is some insiders advice on the best buys in town and all of them are within an easy - medium walking distance of the hotel. Order below is from 'must-see' onwards...
All and sundry at the Flea Market. Forget the ole 'My Dad Went to Samoa and Brought me This' range of souvenir T-shirts, the Flea Market has really clever and creative Tees for all the family. They also have locally made Samoan style clothing including very pretty girl's dresses, hand-crafted souvenirs, and the usual craft market fare.
Bling Bling at Janet's Handicrafts. Yes you can buy the Samoan version of Bling - shiny pacific-inspired jewellery, vibrant tropical accessories, colour-blinding clothing, even fabulous faux Chanel, LV and Burberry. Beautiful things with beautiful price tags but when it looks that good who cares.
Trendy gear at Lokostyle. Their airport shop is amazing and is a fulfilling way to spend your leftover tala on your way out, but they have an even bigger shop in town with gorgeous ladies and men's tropical fashion that would not look out of place in Milan. Their bag and carry case selection is CUTE beyond words.
Cheap novels at Samoa Stationery & Books. You can buy a brand spanking new Nora Roberts, James Patterson or a David Balducci novel for only $18 SAT ($10NZ). Plus they have some rare and popular literary and non-fictional books by Pacific writers or with Pacific inspired themes perfect for that Samoa holiday.
Faux flowers and Kids Stuff at Mercy's Kiddies. This shop is a treasure trove of US imported stock including kids clothes and toys at prices some half of what you would pay in NZ or Aus. Check out their faux tropical flowers that look so much like the real deal I was stopped at customs in NZ and inspected.
TOP TIP: There is this particularly fabulous stall in the middle of the flea market that sells the most beautiful table accessories. The lady who runs the stall creates them herself and I think she has the most magical eye for colour and pattern. :-)