Shopping in Seminyak is rife with possibilities, if you can just forgive the bumps and grinds of making your way to your destination by car, motorbike, or on foot -- a slightly more hazardous prospect. While Kuta remains the focal point for mid-range labels and surfing duds, the goods in Seminyak display local creativity and originality. The junky jewelry that was once commonplace has given way to high-end gems of immense creativity and originality at a fraction of the cost at home. Homewares are another great deal and Balinese home accessories are found in shops literally around the world from Harrods to Home Depot. Shops are typically open daily 9am to 9pm.
Seminyak has a new shopping mall at Seminyak Square, on Jalan Laksmana, that stocks a selection of the bigger brand names like Body & Soul, Periplus, Quiksilver, and the food shop Casa Gourmet.
Periplus -- The best place for maps, books, and magazines is Periplus. The number-one publisher of books on Asia has a chain of 15 bookshops around Bali. Handy stores are outside Bali Deli on Jalan Kunti; in Seminyak Square; next door to Made's Warung on Jalan Raya Seminyak; and in Kuta's Discovery Mall.
Getting the Goods Home -- From a small lamp to a large 6m (20 ft.) Buddha, the following shippers will arrange pick up, packing, and delivery of your goods: Limajari, Jl. Raya Kerobokan 100x (tel. 0361/730024; www.limajaricargo.com), and Rim Cargo, Jl. Laksmana 32 (tel. 0361/737670; www.rimcargo.com). Sourcing Bali, Jl. Gunung Salak 31A, Kerobokan (tel. 0361/744-8025; www.sourcing-bali.com; Mon-Fri 9am-5pm, Sat till 3pm), will take care of all of your shipping needs and they have "personal shopping helpers" who will assist with negotiations, product selections, order placement, and payment.
The Orchard Fine Furniture -- The Orchard, Jl. Oberoi 33X (tel. 0361/410397; www.ibaldesigns.com) is home to iBal Designs. This is a one stop shop for made to order or readymade colonial furnishings and home accessories of understated elegance.
Icon Asian Arts -- This innovative gallery of iconic Asian arts, thus the name (Jl. Oberoi 17; tel. 0361/733875; www.iconasianarts.com; daily 11am-7pm), is run by Bruno Piazza and his partner Susi Johnston, two seasoned figures in art, art history, Asian tribal art, textiles, design, and photography. They bring decades of experience, conscientious collection, and insight into the world of collecting Indonesian tribal art, ethnographica, excavated jewelry, animist art, tribal sculpture, and fine textiles. Their client list reads like the Forbes top 500 but they would never name drop -- it's not their style. The gallery, with rotating exhibits throughout the year, adheres to the creed: Discussion, Debate, Discovery, and Authenticity.
Jalan Raya Seminyak
Jalan Raya Seminyak starts at the junction of Jalan Raya Kerobokan and stretches the all the way down to Kuta where it turns into Jalan Legian. The street is littered with small boutiques, clothing and craft shops, and homeware shops.
If you are looking to furnish your home with treasure from Indonesia, head to Jalan Mertanadi, better known as Jail House Road. The road has large warehouse-size buildings interspersed with smaller specialist shops selling an assortment of items for the home. There is a billiard specialist, large teak furniture manufacturers, model ship makers, French repro furnishing companies, as well as Indonesian antique furnishings and artifacts.
This is the best shopping street in Bali. Shop after shop of designer goods, to suit all tastes and budgets, are crammed into one street that stretches from outside the Legian Hotel all the way up to Jalan Raya Kerobokan. Designers from round the world, who now call Bali home, have retail spaces and showrooms selling their wares for less than you will find in your own country.
Appropriately located on the corner of a busy thoroughfare, the Cornershop/tuckshop is the expat hangout for breakfast, lunch, and coffee and also a clothing shop with men's, women's, and kid's clothing by trendy Bali-based designers. Opposite the Cornershop is a tiny shoe box of a shop called I Love Bali -- filled with brightly colored casual beachwear. Next door is Buddha Wear for knitted jersey outfits in an assortment of colors. Up the steps from Buddha Wear, Sabia (tel. 0361/733995) has just the sort of things you need in Bali, St. Tropez, or St. Barts: nifty espadrilles, oversize woven straw beach bags, stylish floppy sun hats, and cool cotton kaftans. A few doors down is Joy Jewellery (tel. 0361/791-4893), by Dutch owner Jenny, a longtime Bali resident. She told me that Beyoncé had just placed a large order and she was rushing to get the delivery on time. Lots of celebrities find her silver and gold jewelry addictive, but mere mortals can purchase them too at about a quarter of what they would cost stateside.
For the latest in funky designs and an eclectic mix of accessories, nearby Prisoner of St. Petersburg and Rock n Royalty are hard to beat. While Hakari, over the road, is for those with a more subdued taste in clothes.
Further down the road, for fashionistas, are Lulu, Lily Jean, and Magali Pascal. Choose from elegant silk dresses, cut-off shorts, and funky accessories.
For Men -- Jl. Oberoi 1 (tel. 0361/738776) is a hideaway gem by the former head designer from Biasa, an old Bali institution, and a favorite of wealthy Italians in town. Classic linens and cottons fill the racks in subtle tones of taupe and gray. The pashmina scarves complete the Euro look in colors to die for and prices to match.
Much further down the road is Deefusion . In the corner of this furniture emporium is Nico Perez, another designer who dresses men effortlessly in linen. Choose from a selection of classic pastel and muted colored casual ware.
For Children -- Start at the Cornershop for funky T-shirts and separates then head to Clara Mia's for sweet, flowery dresses and shirts too cute for words. Kiki's Closet, with kitsch kids wear in bright colors with plenty of fun patterns including polka dots, animal prints, and stripes, is popular with Versace-dressed mothers. For those with more subdued taste, plenty of beautiful embroidered and batik clothing is at Kids A Go Go suitable for babies and young children.
Interiors -- The furniture emporium of Deefusion sells a selection of modern furnishings from well-known Filipino designers. The showroom will ship directly to your home from their factory in the Philippines.
Local products are about a tenth of the cost of the same for imported products. The produce market near Seminyak, on the corner of Jalan Raya Kerobokan and Jalan Gunung Tangkuban Perahu, has a wide range of seasonal fruits and vegetables as well as snacks -- especially peanuts -- available in a dozen different ways.
Bintang, Jl. Raya Seminyak 17 (tel. 0361/730552; 7:30am-11pm, Fri from 8am), has all the basics: noodles and rice, fresh fruit and vegetables, toiletries, a limited selection of wines, and imported cheese and dairy. There is also a film-processing counter, a small pharmacy, and a magazine and book stand. Upstairs is a stationery and household section that sells kitchen goods like light bulbs and plastic glasses.
Bali Deli, Jl. Kunti 117X (tel. 0361/738686; www.balideli.net; 8am-10pm), is astronomically expensive. A box of Cheerios goes for US$10. Still, it has a huge range of deli products including meat, fish, and a wonderful choice of cheeses and other dairy, plus fresh fruit, veggies, and baked goods. A courtyard restaurant has an international menu with surprisingly good sushi, salads, pastas, "design your own" sandwiches, desserts, fresh juices, and gourmet coffee.
With good fresh produce, a decent deli counter, and some imported items that won't totally break the bank, the new Casa Gourmet, Seminyak Square (tel. 0361/738026; www.casa-gourmet.blogspot.com; 8am-10pm), is giving Bali Deli a run for its money. The excellent ice cream stand will keep the kiddies entertained while you do the shopping.
Grocer & Grind, Jl. Kayu Jati 3X (tel. 0361/737321; www.grocerandgrind.com; 8am-10pm), is equally good for a gourmet fix. You'll find homemade cakes, quiches, take-away sandwiches, paninis, as well as house-smoked salamis and a deli section with meat and cheese.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.