Bargains are rare, very rare in Paris. There are few places where it is more interesting to shop price-wise and even though you won’t likely make the best savings of your life, at least you will have a pleasure to remember that you bought that particular item in Paris and embraced Parisian style, which sentimentally may compensate disadvantage on the price.
I don’t recommend spending considerable amount of time looking for these places vs the rest of your travel itinerary. Rather, if you are around Notre Dame de Paris and/or Hotel De Ville (Town Hall), you may consider spending around 2 hours wandering around the trendy Le Marais district which is located behind Hotel De Ville. The area is filled with small and quite pricey boutiques. There are a few addresses though that make sense to remember and visit if you are around in an attempt to buy something Parisian. Take a note:
- Azzedine Alaia (Stock)
Very close to Hotel De Ville, at the start of Le Marais neighborhood, is perhaps the most famous of the outlets located in Paris, Alaia (Stock? It must be Stock as outlets in Paris usually have it attached to their name).
You do need to look for the exact address as it is rather impossible to find the place otherwise. The street has no evident Alaia indication and only an entrance to a sort of a dirty tunnel with a small Alaia sign on the bell. That mini tunnel leads to a sort of inner yard of the building which upon my last visit was filled with models (?) smoking in bath robes and some very pretentious looking smoking men who could be hairdressers or someone in fashion business. Don’t feel intimidated by that, enter that tunnel and look at your right for the glass door with a “Boutique” sign. The store closes for lunch break, so do mind the opening hours.
Entering the store is equally intimidating, mainly because it is so tiny I have probably never been to such a small store.
Upon my visit, there were around 3 giggling French persons inside all of whom seemed to be working there and only one fellow shopper. Felt already crowded, btw! There are practically two racks of clothes and few shoe boxes on the floor as well as doors leading to workshops or something- all looking quite curious though revealing a not that glamorous fashion house side.
Being in such a weird place, I would have expected prices to match the effort (of being there). Sadly, it was not the case. Most dresses were priced at around 1600 EUR. The cheapest was at 975 EUR which seemed to be presented as a super sale. Shoes with enormously high heals (not my style) were priced at 460 EUR, simple ballerinas 260 EUR. Jackets cost about 1600 EUR. In an outlet! I was shocked! If I would ever consider paying that much for a dress, I would not shop in that kind of a store for it.
I know brand lovers say it is an investment to buy Alaia piece- it better be for that price. I was not impressed though- not talking the garments, but rather the way the outlet is managed vs price.
Address: 18 Rue de la Verrerie, 75004 Paris
- Sandro Stock
Sandro is a very Parisian brand with very French style.
There seem to be a few Sandro stores at Le Marais. Look for this one.
Selection is quite alright, though being an outlet, obviously it is from the last seasons. Prices are not super, but you may expect 40% of original retail price on average.
Address: 26 Rue de Sévigné, 75004 Paris
- Zadig Stock
I love Zadig & Voltaire for my casual yet trendy wardrobe. There are multiple Zadig in Le Marais, but Zadig &Voltaire Stock is the one you must find.
They have a pretty wide selection of items, though naturally from past collections. 40% discount is the average, which is not ideal, but better than shopping full price.
Address: 22 Rue du Bourg Tibourg, 75004 Paris
- La Piscine Bazar
La Piscine seems to be a classic outlet, where you probably can hope to find a gem in between a lot of rubbish, but only if you are lucky and have a lot of patience to search.
There seem to be several La Piscine in Paris in general and at Le Marais. I passed by this one which was really big and had quite a few Margiela pieces. Said that, items were really old and even if priced attractively, nothing caught my attention.
Address: 22 Rue Sainte- Croix de la Bretonnerie, 75004 Paris
- Chloé outlet (no more)
Paris has been home to a famous Chloé outlet for years, with its own snobbish “invitation only”, or as they call it “vente privee” system.
Though technically not at Le Marais, it’s address was not that difficult to find, as it was just a short walk from this district, though towards much less trendy side of Paris.
Twin 7 was its name and of course I just had to visit the place!
First, I came there Monday. Bummer: not even a sign of the place! It looked like that! I came back Tuesday morning- again bummer- closed! I decided to retry in the afternoon and even though there was no sign of the store again, the door to the inner yard was open with people entering the place from the backdoor. I had a quick look and all seemed to be just a workshop or something, and not exactly a store. I asked about Chloé of course. Three Frenchmen from that place told me that there is no more Chloé here in Paris and outlet has been moved to London suburbs and somewhere in the US. No more Paris it seems. What a bummer!
Address I visited (don’t go there- nothing left!): 8, rue Jean-Pierre Timbaud – 75011 Paris
Et Voilá, nothing more interesting happening bargain wise in Paris! On the other hand, this gives you a chance to truly visit this remarkable city, even being a hard core shopping fan as I am I must admit there are better things to do than shopping in Paris!