The Best Shopping in Montreal
Collected by Isa Tousignant , AFAR Local Expert
Far from an excessively consumerist city, Montreal likes its goods select, well designed and generally not too showy. Bling has very little place here, where status tends to be demonstrated with understated finds rather than a season’s international It piece. That means that the best stores around carry small, recherché brands, with a focus on things made here or near. From clothes to design objects to homeware, here’s a list of shops that will inspire you to keep room in your luggage.
6906 Boul St-Laurent, Montréal, QC H2S 3C7, Canada
This enclave on upper Boulevard Saint-Laurent in Little Italy emanates style from the front window on, with a quirky and impeccable approach to layout. Its rich wooden tables and modernist shelves are rife with unique, collectible objects and...
5595 Boul St-Laurent, Montréal, QC H2T 1S9, Canada
Montreal’s premium source of industrial design objects, StyleLabo is an emporium located in Mile End where you’ll find rugged metal desks from the 1950s, flashing-bulb signs from defunct stores, and odds and ends like old street signs, wooden...
5253 Boul St-Laurent, Montréal, QC H2T 1S4, Canada
You know that person who’s so nonchalantly well-dressed she makes everyone in the room look like they’re either dressed on potato sacks or tarted up, Vegas-style? She shops at Les Étoffes. “Measured” is the name of the game in this unisex clothes...
4357 Boul St-Laurent, Montréal, QC H2W 1Z8, Canada
The sculptural window dressing might not make it clear right away that Ibiki is actually a clothes store and not a contemporary art gallery. The store has been known to shift identities to suit its owners’ whims, even down to its name: what used...
160 Rue Saint Viateur E #105, Montréal, QC H2T 1A8, Canada
Did you know this is a Montreal-based brand? This menswear maker, specializing in shirts and suits hip professionals actually like to wear, has conquered indie circles all over the world with its web store, but over the past couple of years it has...
4960 Rue Sherbrooke O, Westmount, QC H3Z 1H3, Canada
Created by the owners of internationally known luxury brand WANT Les essentiels de la vie, purveyors of fine leather bags and travel accessories, WANT Apothecary carries way more than their own designs. In this jewel of a store in Westmount you’ll...
350 Rue Saint-Paul O, Montréal, QC H2Y 2A6, Canada
With this clothes shop on the corner of Rue Saint-Paul and Rue Saint-Pierre, and Pépin Maison just down the block, Pépin is a bit of an Old Montreal empire, where you’ll find everything from the latest pair of shoes by Miista to a home-designed...
152 Avenue Laurier O, Montréal, QC H2T 2N7, Canada
Star-shaped cookie cutter? Check. Silicone bakeware? Got it. Miniature salad dressing whisk? No problem. Everything you could possibly want for your home kitchen, no matter how expert a cook you are, you’ll find at this beautifully appointed store...
5135 Boul St-Laurent, Montréal, QC H2T 1R9, Canada
This fun and friendly women’s clothing store in Mile End constantly refreshes its layout and window dressings, but maintains its specialty in easily-breezily wearable independent designer clothing at a very affordable price range. Alongside the...
Boul St-Laurent, Montréal, QC H2X 2V4, Canada
Establishing good taste on the lower Plateau since 1997, U&I was the first boutique in the city to sell accessible high fashion in a friendly atmosphere, and it still maintains pride of place among the new crop of designer stores it has...
418 Rue Saint-Sulpice, Montréal, QC H2Y 2V5, Canada
This is the storefront to the internationally known high fashion web empire that few people – even Montrealers – know is based Montreal. SSENSE has been selling brands like Erdem, 3.1 Philip Lim, Givenchy, Chloé, Yves Saint Laurent, Valentino and...
4855 Rue Sherbrooke, Westmount, QC H3Z 1G9, Canada
Despite moving down the street and making the transition from independently owned hardware store to a franchise of the Home Hardware chain, Hoggs has kept the spirit that distinguishes it alive and well. This is much more than a hardware store,...
1385 Avenue Greene, Westmount, QC H3Z 2A5, Canada
If you’re looking for that perfect pair of distressed jeans with a grey cotton Henley so soft it could give a baby’s bum a run for its money, this is the place to come. Add to that a pair of dashing dangle earrings and tweed-patterned Hunter rain...
4910 Rue Sherbrooke O, Westmount, QC H3Z 1H3, Canada
You’ll want to spend hours in this cheerful second-floor boutique, trying on everything in sight with the help of the knowledgeable staff. The unique collection of goodies includes Montreal fashion brands like Pajar alongside international...
4875A Rue Sherbrooke, Westmount, QC H3Z 1G9, Canada
The cute pun of the name (“chouchou” means “favorite” in French) will give you an idea on the appealing collection within this Rue Sherbrooke shoe store. They carry some standard brands, like Stuart Weitzman, but also a bunch of unusual ones that...
378 Avenue Victoria, Westmount, QC H3Z 2N4, Canada
This import store has reigned on Rue Sherbrooke for as along as I can remember. It’s an Ali Baba’s cave of Mexican and South American goodies, from throws to ponchos to sculptures and ornaments. It’s THE place to go for interesting holiday...
392 Avenue Victoria, Westmount, QC H3Z 2N4, Canada
The only outlet of this Spanish chain in the whole of Canada is nestled in a tiny space on pretty Rue Victoria, which makes its wares seem all the more precious. As the name suggests, this brand makes cute women’s flats in a variety of whimsical...
4410 Boul St-Laurent, Montréal, QC H2W 1Z5, Canada
The stretch of Boulevard Saint-Laurent between Rue Marianne and Avenue Mont-Royal is known as furniture alley, for all the furniture and home appointment stores that exist there. Latitude Nord was among the first to move to the area and remains...
3960 Rue Saint-Denis, Montréal, QC H2W 2M2, Canada
This polished boutique on Rue Saint Denis has graced the street with its particular French flair for over four decades now. A creamy white, beige and wood emporium of kitchenware and home essentials, it’s THE store to aim at for gift shopping....
211 Rue Bernard O, Montréal, QC H2T 2K5, Canada
Possibly the most important and influential publishers of graphic novels in the last 20 years, Drawn & Quarterly has a must-visit shop in the cool Mile End neighborhood. It sells work from the extensive D&Q catalog (which includes Joe...
174 Rue Bernard O, Montréal, QC H2T 2K2, Canada
The stylish specs you’ll see on every face in this neighborhood may well have come from this narrow eyewear boutique on Avenue Bernard, which specializes in vintage models in pristine condition. The collection is fashion forward in general, with...
5478 Boul St-Laurent, Montréal, QC H2T 1S1, Canada
This junk shop-cum-art gallery is a space in constant evolution, the only exception being the kindhearted owners, Billy Mavreas and Emily O’Brien, who are always at the helm. Every resident of Mile End stops by here at some point in their week,...
6851 Rue Saint-Dominique, Montréal, QC H2S 3B3, Canada
It may not have the design flair of the nearby Magasin Général Bélangermartin, but this home ware store on Rue Dante is beloved citywide for its amazing selection of appliances, cooking tools and all-around useful stuff. Whether you need a meat...
1307 Rue Sainte-Catherine O, Montréal, QC H3G 1P7, Canada
The duo of José Manuel St-Jacques and Simon Bélanger is made in heaven. They design graceful, luxurious clothes for the modern woman who aims at Marlene Dietrich elegance in her every gesture. From crisp white crêpe suits to flowing pleated lamé...
231 Rue Saint-Paul O #100, Montréal, QC H2Y 2A2, Canada
Montreal, QC, Canada
From their bijoux store on upper Saint-Laurent Boulevard in Mile End, these two designers create classic, feminine clothing with a focus on dresses, blouses, deconstructed blazers and sleek dress pants aimed at the dashing professional woman....
3526 Boul St-Laurent, Montréal, QC H2X 2V1, Canada
5425 Avenue Casgrain, Montréal, QC H2T 1X6, Canada
Montreal’s queen of LBDs (and little dresses of all patterns and colors, actually) sells her wares through various boutiques in Montreal and beyond, but also directly from her studio in a beautifully sunny Mile End loft (upon appointment). She...
170 Rue Saint-Paul O, Montréal, QC H2Y 1Z7, Canada
Montreal’s very own Prince of Darkness is best known for his mastery of soft, buttery black leather and his play with textures and details such as zippers and horse hair, but he’s expanded his recent collections into a less gothic and more widely...
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