Shop With Less Drop: The World’s Best Designer Outlets

- Amy Chan, Director of Marketing at Kiwi Collection, Huffington Post blogger and 24 Hours Newspaper columnist

If you like landing a little Lanvin for less than regular price, this is your list. From San Francisco to Switzerland, we’ve culled the best designer outlets for acquiring luxury goods at a discounted price. Keep in mind Canadian and American outlet shoppers that you’re entitled to a 12% tax refund when returning home from Europe. Now start those shopping engines.

FoxTown Outlets Mendrisio, Switzerland
Located just 50 kilometers from Milan on the border of Italy and Switzerland and just a stone’s throw away from Lake Como. It includes 160 high-end designer stores, with brands like Valentino, Prada, Dior, Jil Sander, Missoni, Ferragamo and more. After a day of bargain exhaustion, celebrate your savings at Villa La Massa.

The Mall Outlet – Italy
The Mall has brands including Alexander McQueen, Tods, Salvatore Ferragamo, Gucci, Burberry and more.  This outlet has current items, from just a season or two past.  During my recent trip, I scored a classic Burberry trench for $400 (that’s 60% less than retail), and Tod’s patent loafers at 60% off. If you are staying in Florence, stay at Hotel Savoy, which is a five-minute walk to Sita station. The bus will take you to The Mall in 45 minutes and leaves at 1:30 and 3PM daily.

The “Space” Prada Outlet – Italy
Located on the outskirts of Florence in Tuscany, this outlet offers heavily discounted items on Prada and Miu Miu. There is a fantastic selection of leather bags, shoes and clothing that is from last season, discounted at 50% off or more. In fact, I purchased a bag here for $375 and saw the exact same bag at the store with a slight change in hardware, retailing for $1200. Also, if you’re from the U.S. or Canada, you also can get your tax refund of 12% upon returning home. You can always get the hotel to arrange for a personal driver who will take you to both outlets, wait for you to shop and take you back to your hotel for approximately $90 Euro each way.

Yeoju Premium Outlet – Korea
Yeoju’s 120 outlets shops include fashion and accessories houses like Issey Miyake, Coach and Escada,  beauty brands such as MAC Cosmetics and high-end home goods from Le Creuset. If you stay in Seoul, stay at the Banyan Tree Club & Spa. You can take a bus to the outlet which is a one hour bus ride or hire a private driver.

Woodbury Commons – New York
Located in Central Valley, New York, the mall now has approximately 220 stores. This outlet includes Chanel, but don’t get your hopes too high, as you won’t find any of the classics here. There are a few high-end labels such as Bottega Veneta, Zegna, John Varvatos and Chloe, but the rest is what you’d typically find in a U.S. outlet mall (Adidas, J.Crew, Lululemon, etc).

Jeremy’s – San Francisco
Who said shopping was a girl thing? With labels like Lora Piana and Brioni, this discounter has a selection of  designer goods for both male and female shoppers. The shop is more like a department store and has some of the chaotic characteristics of a Forever 21.  Rumor has it that if you search hard enough, you may score a pair of discounted Chanel or Louboutins. Stay at The St. Regis, which is centrally located in the San Francisco shopping district.

Joyce Outlet – Hong Kong
This two-level warehouse houses the leftover stock from all the Joyce boutiques. Don’t expect to find jaw-dropping discounts but the pricing strategy is quite clear-cut. All the items are tagged with four different prices:  the original retail price, and three dates beneath it. The longer the item lasts at the store, the cheaper it gets. Some brands that you can find include: Viktor & Rolf, Oscar de la Renta, Miu Miu and Lanvin. 
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