Experiences In The D | The Blog for Visit Detroit
The Visit Detroit Blog is part of The Detroit Metro Convention & Visitors Bureau (DMCVB).
Shopping in Detroit | A Guide for Canadians
Whether you're a casual browser or a serious fashionista, the shopping in Detroit and its suburbs is top notch — particularly for Canadians coming across the border. Just a short trip for Winsdor- or Toronto-area residents, you'll get more bang for your buck and plenty of selection.
Bang for your Buck
Your Canadian dollar may go farther in Detroit than in other nearby U.S. states or even Ontario, based on taxes and duty.
- Michigan sales tax: 6 percent
- New York sales tax: up to 8.875 percent
- Ontario HST: 13 percent
And depending on how long you stay, you may qualify for duty exemptions.
- Stay 24 hours in Detroit: bring back up to CA$200 duty-free
- Stay 48 hours or more: bring back up to CA$800 duty-free
An Easy Drive to Deals
Detroit is easily accessible in just minutes from Ontario using the Ambassador Bridge or tunnel. Even from the greater Toronto area, Detroit is less than four hours by car. If you're coming from that direction, try the Blue Water Bridge for shorter wait times at the border (take the 403 to London, stay right onto the 402 across the bridge, then head west on I-94 to reach most of our recommended shopping options).
Shop the Mega Malls
Several mega shopping malls in the Detroit area provide more selection than you'll likely ever need, and each offers its own unique twist. Check out each mall's directory online to see what's in store.
- Somerset Collection in Troy: A hub of luxury shopping with stores such as Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom, Saks Fifth Avenue, Gucci, Luis Vuitton, Tiffany & Co. and Burberry, along with more mainstream options.
- The Mall at Partridge Creek in Clinton Township: One of the newer shopping options in metro Detroit, this mall is smaller than the others, but offers an open-air, dog-friendly experience that makes it a fun choice for warm weather. Stores include Carsons, Nordstrom, Apple, Janie and Jack and Banana Republic.
- Twelve Oaks Mall in Novi: One of the largest malls in the Midwest with stores such as Nordstrom, Macy's, bebe, Coach and Michael Kors.
- Great Lakes Crossing Outlets in Auburn Hills: Great Lakes Crossing takes the cake as the largest outlet center in Michigan, offering shoppers more than 180 retail and dining options – more than 50 you will find nowhere else in the state.
Tip: Check out Visit Detroit for shop-and-stay packages to turn your shopping spree into a mini vacation.
There are tons of new and long-standing shopping options in downtown Detroit. Check out urban fashion and slogan-printed clothing at Detroit is the New Black, or try on trendy eyewear at Warby Parker's Woodward Avenue store while you sip Vernor's Ginger Soda. Women can find vintage-inspired clothing, accessories and handbags at The Peacock Room, and City Bird in Midtown is a great spot to find cute-little-somethings (artsy housewares, paper goods, accessories and knick knacks). You can also check out Shinola watches and bicycles and Third Man Records, and don't forget something for your four-legged friend at Canine to Five.
Shop Metro Detroit's Boutique Scene
If you want to venture outside the city of Detroit, the surrounding neighborhoods have some fantastic, smaller downtown areas that are completely walkable — and each has its own unique boutiques. In Oakland County, try historic Rochester (Wanderlust for on-trend, bohemian fashion; Sole Sisters for footwear), upscale Birmingham (Teacups & Toys pet boutique or Lark & Co for unique home finds) or laid-back Royal Oak (Rail & Anchor for clever home items; LIFT Designer Toys & Gallery for kids' items). Or check out the ritzier shops in one of the Grosse Pointes (POSH by Village Palm for apparel and accessories; Shoe Tree for footwear) in Wayne County.
By: Heidi Tiano
Photo credit: Bill Bowen