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Stepping Out in (Elche) Style

I just l---uuuurv---vve shoes. Back in the good old days of pre-2000, I would have at least thirty pairs of shoes, and counting. Shoes for work, shoes for after work, shoes for the weekend, killer high-heeled stilettos … some were still in the pristine shoe-boxes, just waiting for some occasion to wear them.

Being slightly older now has curbed my love of shoes … ever so slightly. Didn’t get a chance to go shoe-shopping after Christmas—bummer. But, never fear...

Because we’re close to Elche, the home of shoes, shoes, shoes—there’s always a bargain to be had, at whatever time you visit. Why?

Elche is historically renowned in European and international shoe markets for the high quality and fine styles. We decided to have a trawl around two major outlets in Elche; the shoe capital of Spain.

First it was to a sizeable outlet for footwear to the east side of town of Elche. There was a museum dedicated to the making of shoes, part of the showcase of the same management, which was fascinating.

I didn’t realize that those multi-colored espadrilles that you wear in summer, the ones with rope soles—the soles of which are made from palm fronds. Elche … palm fronds! Ah-ha.

The museum was an interesting diversion to learn about the fascinating art of shoe-making.

But, it’s the retail outlet we’re after—what every woman, girl, even men and boys want to hear —very large factory store and plenty to choose from ... the prices were reasonable as well; stacks and stacks of shoes, thigh-high boots were very nice indeed (drool).

Next, we visited the largest shoe/footwear factory outlet in the whole of Europe; on the western side of Elche. They even have tour buses visiting the factory daily—can it be true? Just down the road quite close to us, what any girl/woman would give her eye-teeth for? It is like going into an Aladdin’s cave full of treasures.

They have premises covering 30,000 m2, of which 6,000 m2 are industrial premises and 2,200 m2 are for displaying their products: ladies shoes, stilettos, flats, boots, platformed espadrilles, sling backs, open-toe sandals, wedges, wedding-ensemble shoes in all colors…. and many more.

Bewildering array of color and styles. Of course men’s and children’s styles as well, in their huge space they call their showroom—friendly staff and different sections displaying different footwear as well as belts, bags and accessories. It would take me a month or two of Sundays to shop here … very reasonable prices as you can see ...

Even if you would prefer to purchase shoes/footwear from a normal shoe store, rather than from a factory outlet, there are many many stores in Elche that one can purchase very good pairs of shoes at more than reasonable prices. Even the Saturday and Monday market in Santa Pola have some cracking bargains.

Wow, all this window-shopping (will have to go again to BOTH outlets to see if they have more SALES) makes me yearn for coffee and cakes. Next up … clothes shopping, anybody?

For photos and a full write-up, visit my personal Web site (URL is located in my profile) and click the “Jacquis Musings” section.

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