Showroom at Shackleton Thomas - Photo by Andrew Harper

Grand Awards: Favorite Shops of 2017

By Andrew Harper

The Hideaway Report | January 4, 2017

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Special Recognition Award Winners

Mr. Harper's favorites from the past year of travel

A pair of wooden clogs in San Francisco; a bowl by Miranda Thomas from her workshop in Vermont; and a T-shirt from the Port Lockroy Museum in Antarctica. Shopping is an integral part of traveling, and those were three of the year’s most idiosyncratic and enjoyable purchases.


Chicago, Illinois

P.O.S.H. interior

This bright and elegant boutique in downtown Chicago specializes in vintage serving ware from upscale hotels, cruise ships and restaurants. On my latest visit, I discovered midcentury coffee cups produced for officers of the Italian Air Force and vintage silver-plate items from The Athenaeum hotel in London and the Rainbow Room in New York.

P.O.S.H. Chicago
613 N. State Street. Tel. (312) 280-1602

Millésimes à la Carte

Beaune, France

Tasting room and shop at Millésimes à la Carte Photo by Andrew Harper

The short taxi ride from the center of Beaune to this colorful wine shop is well worth the effort, because you can taste before you buy (or just taste). For 40 euro per person, we sampled six Burgundy grands crus, including sumptuous wines from Corton-Charlemagne and Echezeaux.

Millésimes à la Carte
1 Rue du Moulin Noize. Tel. (33) 3-80-20-68-68


San Francisco, California

Wooden clogs at Bryr © Leslie Santarina

While discovering San Francisco on foot, you may want to head to the sophisticated Bryr studio in the gentrifying Dogpatch District to purchase a unique pair of clogs. Each pair of these chic wooden-soled shoes fashioned from soft American leather and traditional wooden bases from Europe are available for purchase on-site or made to order according to desired size, heel height, style and color.

2331 3rd Street. Tel. (415) 374-7323

Port Lockroy Museum


Shop at the Port Lockroy Museum © UK Antarctic Heritage Trust

A surprising high point of our trip to Antarctica was our visit to Port Lockroy, a former military base that has been restored and now operates as a museum that faithfully shows what life was like in the original outpost. None of us went to the Great White Continent to shop, but we found a rich opportunity in the gift boutique. UK Antarctic Heritage Trust, which administers the museum, has put together a wide selection of goods that includes books, maps, T-shirts, pins and patches. The shop also serves as a post office — an official branch of the Royal Mail — so a postcard home with the Port Lockroy postmark can serve as a good souvenir.

Port Lockroy
Goudier Island, Antarctic Peninsula. Tel. (44) 1223-355-049


Bridgewater, Vermont

Collection of cups, bowls, plates and teapots at Shackleton Thomas

During our delightful meander through Vermont, we had a chance to stop into the workshop-showroom of ShackletonThomas, an outfit that in many ways epitomizes the vibrant artisanal culture of the state. Charles Shackleton came to the United States from Ireland in 1981 (he is related to Sir Ernest Shackleton, the legendary Antarctic explorer) to pursue his passion for furniture making. His wife, Miranda Thomas, is a gifted potter, whose works, displayed on Shackleton pieces, include elegantly shaped bowls, platters, teapots and more with designs that reflect natural forms and colors.

102 Mill Road. Tel. (802) 672-5175

Mountain Folkcraft

Hong Kong, China

Collection of woodcarvings, jewelry, and fabrics at Mountain Folkcraft

As Hong Kong’s traditional heritage disappears under the rush to modernity, this charming shop remains one of the best places to find wonderful examples of Chinese folk craft. Nestled in the bustling Central district, it carries fabrics, woodcarvings, ceramics, jewelry and much more. I have been shopping here for many years and am relieved to see that it is still thriving.

Mountain Folkcraft
12 Wo On Lane, Central. Tel. (852) 2523-2817

Andrew Harper's Grand Awards


 Sneak Peek

This article appeared in The Hideaway Report, a monthly newsletters exclusively for members.

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Andrew Harper Photo Our editors write under the Andrew Harper byline so they can travel the world anonymously to give you the unvarnished truth about luxury hotels. Hotels have no idea who they are, so they are treated exactly as you might be.


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