Seville, City of purchases

Seville is a pleasant city to walk and enjoy its immense attractions. A unique historical and monumental heritage in the whole world, a spectacular climate, excellent gastronomy, the warmth of its people… In short, Seville is a city to live every day, catching on with joy that defines its inhabitants and makes it one of the favorite destinations around the world.

If you want to know the most genuine Seville in a special way, giving an answer to all those for whom shopping is an important part of your travel experience. This guide will bring you closer to the places where Sevillians buy from artisal products to the most innovative. We will visit the establishments of big brands and we will cross the markets of supplies with hearth and the most alternative areas.

Combining your shopping with visits to monuments, enjoying our cultural diary or taking some delicious tapas, is a real treat. Another very attractive option is to travel the city by bike or segway into the narrow streets of the center, parks and gardens.

This year, Seville offers another attractive activity, because on the occasion of the commemoration of the XXV Anniversary of the Universal Exhibition of 1992, the Advisory Council, in which the Legacy Association Expo Seville is represented, has scheduled a calendar of varied activities, such as a large exhibition, tourist routes, shows, meetings with former workers, etc. You can check everything at www.legadoexposevilla.org.

Seville offers its visitors great international fashion, accessories and decoration firms in its main commercial areas, whether in large stores and supermarkets or in small shops. But this city, for its millennial history and its artisan tradition, also gives you the possibility to find many products that you will only find here, as well as those that are part of our most innovative and trendy face. To those who are passionate about the image universe, we recommend  you to visit Santana Foto, a reference for analog photography throughout Europe.

The capital has been consecrated as a knot and center of many of the most fertile cultures of Europe, being able to presume from the antiquity and the Middle Ages of a commercial transfer of first order.

Its privileged position in the XVI century, when it was capital of the huge  Spanish Empire while the Port (and the Gate) of the Americas would indelibly mark the city. The so-called “New York” of that time, astonishment and wonder to own and strangers, brimming with precious goods that attracted a multitude of merchants and trades from all over. Thus, the discovery of America in 1492 and the Indian trade made Seville a universal metropolis. In Seville, an organization called La Casa de Contratación was created to keep accounts of products that left Spain to America or that arrived from there. All trade had to pass compulsorily by this organism. Items such as clothes, tools, weapons and jewelry, and other products such as cereals and wine, were transported from the port of Seville, to where agricultural products arrived at that time, especially in America, mainly tobacco, cacao and coffee.

A special mention deserves the first travel around the world, carried out by Fernando de Magallanes, an expedition that in August of 1519 left el Muelle de las Mulas -dock of the mules- in Seville, without being aware of the great feat that they were going to fulfill.

People, professionals or simply searchers of fortune of half the world ended up creating a way of being and living that arrives until today, granting a primordial paper to the amount businesses that have gathered and still congregate in the Old Town of Seville.

Sevillian Tradition

Seville is characterized by its artisan production mainly carried out by ceramics and pottery. The first labors date back to the Neolithic period, although it is in the Muslim stage when they acquire their own personality, later enriched by techniques and formulas of classic styles.

In this way, we can find from decorative motifs of Islamic origin to baroque tracts of s. XVIII, passing through classic Italian designs of the s. XVI.

The creation of artistic ceramics, begun in the Islamic era, is mainly located in Triana neighborhood and in some establishments on Sierpes Street. The Hispanic-Muslim potters contributed the glazing and its application to the architecture in facades, floors, baseboards and ceilings. Later, the Mudejar style adopted oriental techniques that formed the basis of the local style. Thereby, mosaics and tiles began to be made, predominantly hand painted works with popular motifs.

Surprisingly, nowadays many of these ornaments continue to be the main protagonists in an endless number of streets, buildings, “patios” and even “bodeguitas” or restaurants of our city. The richness of the Guadalquivir Valley in mud and clays also has its domestic and agrarian application, thanks to the production by potters of typical elements of our land, such as pitchers or jugs, initially more functional than decorative. Also noteworthy are the handmade pieces of La Cartuja, a firm founded in 1839 by Charles Pickman. To know more about our pottery and its neighborhood by excellence, we recommend you visit the Ceramic Center Triana.

Currently, Seville continues to maintain an extensive network of establishments where you can acquire a multitude of artisan products, made with the same care and dedication that centuries ago. Articles such as shawls, blankets, embroidery, lace, fans, musical instruments, haberdashery objects, flamenco costumes or accessories are good examples of the typical Seville craftsmanship.

Manila shawls are a garment widely used in Seville for special events. We can see them not only in the Fair or in the Maestranza, but also in many other social events. Foronda or Blasfor are some of the most important embroidery houses in the elaboration of manila shawls, true jewels for life.

Also the tradition of the use of the black blankets is maintained in Easter when the sevillan women dress in mourning the Holy Thursday and  Friday. White blankets, are very common in bullfights at Maestranza and weddings, worn by bridesmaids and many brides who replace the traditional veil by this garment.

Another of the traditional accessories most used is the fan. Many of the fans hand-painted are considered small works of art.

The flamenco dress, which is the only regional clothing subject to fashion, as well as its accessories (earrings, necklaces, bracelets, brooches, shawls, shoes, flowers or combs) deserve special mention. In addition to the Sevillians themselves, countless people come to our city to buy these costumes and wear in their own traditional festivals or buy some of the complements for special occasions.

Many visitors here acquire fashion bridal and fashion from Sevillian designers. The capital of Seville has become an important fashion center in recent years, with important national designers and numerous boutiques of local designers. Some of the best trendy shops are on the streets Cuna and Regina and its surroundings.

In Seville, craftsmanship is also closely linked to Holy Week, thanks to which are still maintained some craft trades. It is the case of the workshops of embroidery in gold, the goldwork, the cabinetmaking, the imagery or the cerería. Of note is the small size reproduction of the most venerated religious images.

Alongside these shops, the traditional street markets continue to be kept on certain days of the week.

On the other hand, the markets of supplies are authentic mirrors of the real life of the city and its citizens. There and also in the abacerias, convents and gourmet shops as well, is where you will find other typical products of Seville with which you will feel the essence of our soul in your palate. Convent sweets, cheeses, wines, sausages, bitter orange marmalades, etc. Also, and increasingly, are in Seville small shops of current design in which to find all kinds of products related to fashion, new trends or decoration, and which show the most current face of our city.