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Shopping in Detroit

Stores have followed the residential exodus from the central city; there are few alternatives downtown, but the ones that are there are worth a visit. Eastern Market, on the edge of downtown, is a sensory experience with a large array of indoor shops and outdoor stalls. There are cheese, wine, spice, peanut, candy and other specialty-food shops, eclectic eateries and a wholesale centre for fresh produce and meats. For distinctive ceramic items such as vases and decorated tiles, try the gift shop of Pewabic Pottery, a ceramics studio that's been in business since 1903.

With a few notable exceptions, Detroit is a mall town. The Somerset Collection in Troy is the toniest and most elaborate, both in quality (lots of high-end retailers) and volume (it's actually two connected malls with hundreds of stores).

For something a little different, try downtown Royal Oak, 15 miles (24 km) north of downtown Detroit. This walkable town, which is quickly being transformed with high-priced loft and condo development, has added some national stores and restaurants to its roster of offbeat shops and eateries. However, the mix is still eclectic enough to warrant visitors' time and attention. Most shops are located on Fourth Street, South Main Street, 11 Mile Road and South Washington Street.

Other interesting shopping can be found in Ferndale, Royal Oak's funkier neighbour to the south, which many view as the new Royal Oak.

For a more upscale experience, try Birmingham, which is about 20 miles (30 km) north of downtown Detroit. It is notable for its art galleries, chic clothing shops and elegant home-decor stores.

Generally, shopping hours are: Monday-Saturday, 10 am-6 or 7 pm; Sunday, noon-6 pm. Larger malls and shopping centres are usually open Monday-Saturday until 9 pm, and on Sunday noon-6 pm.





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