Readers' Choice

Women's boutique
The Pink Hanger

Men's fashions
Paul Simon

Women's shoes

Men's shoes

Vintage clothing
Hong Kong Vintage

Maternity clothing
Beaux Belly

Evening gowns

Store to buy jeans

Hand Picked

Stylish gifts



Bike shop/repair
Black Sheep

Hardware Store
Blackhawk Hardware

Pet store
Pet Smart

Barnes & Noble

Fresh Market

Fresh fish
Fresh Market

Dean & DeLuca

Organic foods
Earth Fare

Polka Dot Bake Shop

Home accessories
Crate & Barrel

Place to buy jeans
Black & Blue

Cheryl Little opened Black & Blue with one goal: make it the denim destination in Charlotte. She's succeeded. From straight and skinny to boot cut, trouser, and wide leg, B&B is stocked with classic looks by designers like Tavernini, The Proportion of Blue, Anlo, Ksubi, Kasil, and Mink. Not only will you find a great pair of jeans, but B&B also sells men's and women's apparel and accessories. Plus, the price points are tough to beat (around $120 to $250 per pair of denim) making it hard to pass up that pair of Habitual trouser jeans you've been eyeing for the past two seasons.
720 Governor Morrison St., 704-366-9339

Place to buy yoga apparel
Breathing Room

Breathing Room is a relax-and-unwind yoga studio filled with the sweet scent of herbal teas. Yogis be forewarned, though: be prepared to leave with bundles of apparel. The studio is chock-full of cool yoga goodies (think spa products from Waleda and bliss plus books, blocks, and bags) not to mention the best selection of yoga apparel in Charlotte. And if the shopping tires you out, pull up a seat at the Pure Bar and recharge with one of BR's rejuvenating teas.
214 W. Tremont Ave., 704-335-3315

Place to buy couture … everything

Owner Laura Vinroot Poole enlisted former Barneys/Saks buyer Ruth Caldwell to overhaul Capitol's inventory. The minitransformation has been, well, amazing. Searching through the racks here feels like getting an intimate preview of Fashion Week: find pieces by Balenciaga, Erin Fetherston, The Row, Zac Posen, and Brian Reyes. Plus, accessorize with jewelry by Pomellato and Luc Kieffer, covetable handbags by Chloe, and shoes by Devi Kroell and Oscar de la Renta.
Phillips Place, 6815-C Phillips Place Ct., 704-552-8987

Place to buy high-end furniture
Design Within Reach

This edgy SouthPark storefront just feels cool—strewn with mod, retro pieces like LC4's cowhide chaise lounge and George Nelson's hipster chic Ball clock. Go super contemporary with a Frank Gehry chunky outdoor sofa or keep it simple with modular shelving by Opus. From accessories and lighting to ottomans and office storage, DWR makes adding high-end designer looks to the home easy.
4310 Sharon Rd., Suite 21

Place to buy your "it" bag

The year-plus wait for a coveted Birkin bag says it all. Hermès offers dozens of classic bags—from clutches to totes to satchels—with sleek lines and supple leather. The adorable Lindy 30 ($4,100) is compact and elegant while the retro Victoria II tote ($4,075) is great for travel. Whatever you choose, you'll be content knowing that women (and maybe men) will forever sneak peeks at your handbag—wondering, of course, just how much that bad boy cost you.
SouthPark, 704-365-6932

Three Little Birds

At this South End shop, you'll not only receive personal attention, but also a wide selection of elegant paper goods (fifty-two vendors, twenty-one of which are exclusive to the store). Adorable paisley notecards by Inviting Co., custom-designed invitations by in-house professional artists and designers, and classy notepads by Exquisite Paper are just a few of the paper options.
2115 Southend Dr., Suite 103

Place to buy women's shoes
Bob Ellis Shoes

A killer pair of shoes can make you feel like a queen, but we love Bob Ellis because the staff actually treats you like royalty long before you hand over your Visa. At the upscale SouthPark store, the customer service is just as primo as the selection of high-end designers: Manolo Blahnik, Jimmy Choo, Stuart Weitzman, Prada, and more. The customer service is so good here you might find yourself nabbing—without thinking about the hefty price tags—not only a pair of YSL flats but also a metallic Lanvin tote to boot.
SouthPark, 704-366-6686

Emerson Joseph

After dominating the art of “man-scaping” uptown men at the South Tryon location, this luxury men's grooming destination expanded the empire to include new Ballantyne Village and SouthPark locations, each one boasting flat-screen TVs, pool tables, and a strict no-chicks-allowed boys' club feel. The haircut and styling should be marked on every man's calendar (the included head-and-neck massage is, possibly, the best part). And with these new lounges it's never been easier to find out what it's like to get a truly good shave and cut.
Ballantyne Village, 14825 John J. Delaney Dr. 704-369-5181; 4300 Sharon Rd., 704-362-7297

Place to buy nightlife attire

Want to stand out in the crowd at M5? K.La has what you need: flirty linen tops by Lu Luvia, flapper dresses by bizz, and striking utilitarian-inspired pieces from Collective Clothing. Nearly every label bears the name of an up-and-coming designer, but best of all, you can score a trendy outfit, jewelry, and handbag for your big night out all for under $200.
6815-B Phillips Place Ct.

Pet boutique

In addition to offering the largest selection of holistic pet foods and pet products in Charlotte, customers receive owner Diana Daffin's undivided attention and formidable expertise on how to feed and pamper their pets, inside and out. And it's not just food: find handmade furniture by Amish artisans from reclaimed barn wood in Pennsylvania, decadently comfortable Double Donut nap beds by Bowsers, and luxury pet blankets by Jack Rocket Wear.
Toringdon Circle, 12206 Copper Way, 704-544-7551
Wedding registry
Crate & Barrel

From the convenient in-store kiosks and user-friendly Web site to the chic minimalist black-and-white gift boxes, we just can't get over how easy it is to register at this popular chain. Besides the slew of home accessories, place settings, electronic kitchen gizmos, and prepackaged goodies, items such as wine glasses and place mats are completely affordable. Brides: don't miss out on special Sunday shopping hours when you can sip champagne, test kitchen gadgets, and go crazy with the registry scanner.
4320 Sharon Rd., 704-362-4003
Bridal boutique
New York Bride

When it comes to a great gown-hunting experience, this two-story space in Atherton Lofts has it all: charming exposed brick walls, an abundance of flattering natural light, uninterrupted personal attention from sparkling sales associates, and, oh yeah, one more thing: they actually let you touch the dresses while you browse (gasp!). The well-edited range of designers includes Jim Hjelm, Jenny Lee, Cymbeline, and perennial (and celeb) favorite Monique Lhuillier.
2108 South Blvd., No. 104, 704-372-7441
Bed and bath linens

You know those days when all you want to do is stay in bed? Brace yourself: once you've hit this purveyor of all things fluffy, puffy, soft, and silky there's bound to be a lot more of them. Each pillow, comforter, and feather bed purchased here is made to order in DeWoolfson's North Carolina factory, with you calling the shots on exactly how heavy, light, firm, or soft each should be. Once the down is done, swath yourself in fine linens from SDH, NC Souther, Matouk, and Yves Delorme. Or spoil yourself in the bath as well with silk towels from Christy of England or organic, bamboo towels from Nandina.
Stonecrest, 7808-C Rea Rd., 704-541-9722

Hostess gifts
Origami Ink

Thinking about grabbing a bottle of wine or potted plant to take to that dinner party? There's no need to be so predictable—not when this new shop has a whole gallery of unique items that are inspired (heirloom photo albums) and artful (hand-blown glass art). Choose from high-end writing pens from Acme Studio that showcase designs from renowned artists, collections of R. Nichols quirky note cards that feature his signature, cartoonlike drawings, and organic-inspired sterling silver jewelry from Philippa Roberts.
4310 Sharon Rd., 704-442-7400

Baby and children's boutique

Oh, to be young again…so we could have our own custom-designed bedroom from this precious purveyor of kiddy-chic clothing, furniture, bedding, décor, and accessories. Adorably luxe cribs run the price gamut from $500 to $2,200, and it has the largest selection of chic Bugaboo strollers on this side of town. Original artwork from local artists, bedding from Elizabeth Allen, and nesting's own line of custom-made glider chairs with machine-washable slipcovers are just the beginning of what you can find here for the kiddies.
6401 Morrison Blvd., 704-366-3787
Place for basics
Her Therapy

When the time comes to stock up on your wardrobe staples—denim, tees, and versatile sundresses—look no further than this Ballantyne Village boutique. In addition to an entire wall of comfortable cult-fave Michael Stars shirts in every color imaginable, Her Therapy boasts a covetable collection of Trina Turk dresses, girly cardigans from Charlotte Tarantola, delicate, dangling earrings by Viv and Ingrid, and a cache of designer denim from Chip and Pepper, Antik, and Citizens of Humanity.
Ballantyne Village, 14815 John J. Delaney Dr., 704-341-9100

Place to splurge on your home
Luxe Home Couture

Sure, it's no small thing to spend $2,700 on an epic chandelier made of citron green twigs, but can you really assign a dollar amount to “wow” factor? Every pillow, platter, and picture frame in this East Boulevard store will have houseguests begging to know, “Where did you find that!” Like an antique Swedish secretary desk ($8,000), a richly textured Venizia throw from Anichini ($395), handmade Megan Park pillows ($158 and up), or a striking set of four gold-leaf-adorned tumblers by Kim Seybert ($148).
227 East Blvd., 704-370-2644 

Place to buy everyday jewelry

Imagine dozens of glass shelves, climbing majestically toward the ceiling, each one brimming with glistening rows of jewelry in nearly every shape, size, and style. It's no dream—it's the accessories section at Sloan. No matter what your heart desires—gold, silver, pearls, pendants, earthy beads, colored crystals, wide cuffs, delicate charms, dramatic chandeliers, or simple studs—you'll find it here. The prices of the glam pieces by designers such as Chan Luu, Jose Barerra, Jill Jacobson, and Charlotte locals Kym Motley, Kristin Morris, Sally Payne, and Nancy Day run the gamut from $20 to $500.
Shops at Twin Oaks, 1419 East Blvd., 704-338-1400

Place to get a cocktail dress
Coco Fleur

If you're looking for something special to wear this weekend, head to this south Charlotte shop. You won't find anything overly frilly or inappropriately youthful on these racks, but what you will find are clean silk silhouettes from Jenny Han, classic fitted sheaths and flowing halters from Black Halo, bright, vintage-inspired shifts from Eva Franco, and simple, flirty designs from Rebecca Taylor. For the gal with a seriously crammed social calendar, nab additional dressy looks from Nell Couture, BNX, Amanda Uprichard, and Akiko.
The Fountains, 8145 Ardrey Kell Rd., 704-321-2626
Place to buy home accessories

We all want our homes to give off an effortlessly stylish vibe, but who's got the time to cultivate it? Co-owners Erin Dougherty and interior designer Kristen Cox, that's who. The former has put together a store chock-full of home wares that'll give your home an instant, luxurious lift, while the latter offers in-home consulting to make sure you achieve aesthetic perfection. Start with sumptuous, luxurious pillows by Brooklyn designer Aviva Stanoff, an exclusive collection of botanical prints from artist Lauren Lachance, and handmade blown glass vases in vibrant cool hues by Glass Nuvo. Even Isabella's luxurious line of bath products from Soap and Paper Factory, packaged in bright floral wrapping, make a statement. 
715 Providence Rd., 704-377-4919

Place to buy running shoes
Run for Your Life

Sure, you can get sneakers at any big chain store. Or you can go where the serious booty-loop runners go for their race-winning kicks. At Run for Your Life, it's all about running. You don't just go in, try on a few pairs, and leave. The sales staff offers a personalized experience to understand where, how far, and how much you run to provide a shoe that fits not only your foot, but your route. Be prepared to take off your shoes and socks and have your walk and running style analyzed on a treadmill by Run's trained staff members so they can find you the perfect shoe out of their eight different brands.
2422 Park Rd., 704-358-0713   

Place to buy jewelry (and bring your guy)
Guliani's Fine Jewelry

The sparkle of jewels and gems gleaming through the corner windows of Guliani's Fine Jewelry in Blakeney lures you in, but its tailored selection and amiable staff keep you coming back. New to Charlotte this year, Guliani's is owned and operated by twenty-year-old certified gemologist Shanu Guliani, and is an expansion of her family's retail business in Florida. Guliani's carries a great line of rugged titanium pieces for men, who will accompany their ladies for the diamonds, pearls, and emeralds. Best of all, pull up a seat and stay awhile: Guliani and her crew will serve you and your man glasses of wine and champagne while browsing the goods.
Blakeney Village, 9816 Rea Rd., 704-542-2980

Gourmet cooking supply shop   
Gourmet on the Run

There's more to Mooresville than NASCAR. Family owned and full of products any kitchen would welcome, Gourmet on the Run has an eclectic variety of accessories (love the heavy-duty measuring cups and adorable polka dot martini glasses), appliances, party ware (grab the Village Dip Chiller), and ingredients for every type of chef. The recently remodeled in-store demo kitchen is home to cooking classes and wine tastings ($15-$40), on most Saturdays.
137 Marketplace Dr., 704-696-0030

Place to buy sunglasses   
Sally's Optical Secrets

If you take style cues from young Hollywood, you'll know the secret must-have item for any season is a fabulous pair of sunglasses. Sally Broadway has fulfilled this need for the past eight years with an exclusive mix of designer sunglasses and eyewear from Theo, Bevel Specs, Mosley Tribes, and Toki. But go high end (and ultracool) with a tortoise-shell pair by Tom Ford.
1419 East Blvd., 704-342-0123

Place to buy perfume no one else has
Jeffre Scott Apothecary

Jeffre Scott has stocked his eponymous Myers Park and Piper Glen boutiques with scents so intriguing that people will stop and ask you, “What is that gorgeous scent?” Tous Touch for women lingers with gentle hues of lotus, freesia, and lily, and the Tous for Men is equally erotic with notes of grapefruit, Szechuan pepper, and sage. Fragrance is Scott's undeniable forte so it's no surprise he's tapped into the celeb craze and introduced Charlotte to Hollywood's fave scents by Costume National, Tocca, and Mona Di Orio.
607 Providence Rd., 704-339-0010; 6432 Rea Rd., 704-544-0750

Maternity wear
Beaux Belly

No surprise here, this is still the place to find the most stylish collection of mommy-to-be wear in the Queen City. Designers like Olian, Juliet Dream, Maternal America, Ripe, Michael Stars, and Paige Premium Denim will make yours the best-dressed bump in town.
6401 Morrison Blvd., 704-334-1701

New women's boutique
The Pink Hanger

Cocktail dresses, painterly tops, tailored denim: owner Whitney Avishar stocked her new boutique with trendy staples like a 1960s-inspired black Karta cocktail dress with matching jewel adornment, a wide assortment of affordable casual wear, funky costume jewelry, and a broad range of accessories for every occasion. Designers include French Connection, Lewis Cho, Rebecca Beeson, and Dressed in Yellow, one of TPH's exclusive lines. The Cotswold shop's cozy pink walls and congenial customer service make it an enjoyable place to shop for the latest women's fashion. 
2935 Providence Rd., Suite 103, 704-366-7272

Men's boutique
Paul Simon

Paul Simon knows classic style. And the new SouthPark location specializes in just that—stylish men's formalwear, sportswear, shoes, and accessories that are so elegant yet comfortable that customers remain loyal year after year. Choose from brass, silver, or 14K gold cuff links, silk ties, and 100 percent silk printed pocket squares, or make a bold statement in a gray or navy plaid worsted-wool suit by Coppley. Better yet, splurge on a custom-made shirt by designers such as Zanella, Hugo Boss, and Hickey-Freeman.
4300 Sharon Rd., 704-366-4523

Garden nursery
Carolina Gardens

Sometimes you just want personal attention when you're desperately trying to figure out why your magnolia didn't survive the drought. And sometimes, those big box stores can't give you that. That's where Carolina Gardens comes into play. The unassuming nursery is full of everything from  shade-loving camellias and Encore azaleas to sun-thriving crape myrtles. Besides the vast selection of perennials and annuals, you'll also find hardscape materials, colorful birdhouses, and adorable outdoor accessories.
13690 Independence Blvd.
Indian Trail, 704-821-4490

Vintage clothing shop 
Hong Kong Vintage

This vintage reservoir in Plaza Midwood is where anyone from hipsters to hippies can find adorable tees (think a classic Barry Manilow circa 1978), fitted polyester dresses, bright, chunky jewelry, and a huge selection of second-hand denim and great, barely worn shoes. Plus, find home accessories that you can rest assured won't be found in anyone else's closet or living room.
2005 Central Ave., 704-334-0538

Categories: Feature, Food + Drink, Restaurants & Food