From the grand futurism of the Bullring to the industrial chic of the Custard Factory, Birmingham has a spectacular range of shopping destinations. Whether you’re looking for designer labels or quirky market finds, high street staples or unique jewellery, you’ll find it here. Explore our quick guide to find out where to head to tick off your shopping list - and rest assured there’ll be a Premier Inn hotel in Birmingham that’s ready and waiting for you to relax in when you’re all shopped out.
Shopping in Birmingham
You can shop til you drop in Birmingham without even setting foot in a mall. If you’re watching the pennies (or want some money left over for a post shopping cocktail or two), head to one of the city’s markets - it’ll help you experience some real local flavour, too.
At the Rag Market you can soak up some culture and grab a few bargains at the same time, because it’s not just a buzzing place to shop, but a real slice of Birmingham heritage. Next door to the glitzy Bullring and not far from our Birmingham City Centre (New Street Station) hotel, there are 350 stalls here selling their wares, with a good-size helping of banter from the vendors. Best known for its fabric off-cuts and haberdashery, alongside the beads and buttons you’ll find jewellery, clothing, stationery, make-up and even fancy dress and wigs. Even if there’s nothing you want, the fabric stalls are so gloriously colourful you’ll just have to take some photos.
For hipster bargains galore, head to the Oasis indoor market. The centre of the city’s alternative fashion scene, this historic outlet between the Square shopping centre and Corporation Street is four decades old - and a real nostalgia fest. It boasts one of the largest collections of alternative independent retailers in the UK, with traders selling everything from Goth clothing and quirky jewellery to burlesque accessories and club wear.
If it’s not a break without a bit of shopping, a trip to Birmingham will be right up your high street. The city’s transformation into a retail powerhouse began when the much-hated 1960s Bullring building was destroyed, making way for the bright new shopping mall of the same name that now stands in its place. Since then, Birmingham’s shopping credentials have been boosted even further with the opening of Grand Central (the newest mall on the city’s shopping map).
One of the largest shopping centres in the UK, the Bullring dominates the city centre with its iconic Selfridge building, inspired by a Paco Rabanne sequinned dress. Step inside and you’ll find its 160 stylish stores, 2000 leading brands and 37 eateries make it Birmingham’s go-to shopping destination.
Sitting directly above New Street Station, Grand Central is a busy shopping hub. With 60 premium shops, restaurants and cafés, as well as one of the largest John Lewis department stores in the country, this station shopping centre is a destination in itself.
Just a five-minute walk from the Bullring is a shopping centre with a real bohemian feel to it. Set in 15 acres of restored Victorian warehouses, the Custard Factory is Birmingham’s creative hub and provides a fusion of art, culture and independent shops with a focus on fashion, gifts and homeware. Bargain hunters will love the discount pop-up shops and vintage sales where you pay for clothes by the kilo at wholesale prices.
Want to indulge in a bit of retail therapy of the designer kind? Well, you’ve come to the right place! Birmingham has more than its fair share of designer shops and boutiques. And the best place to head for if you’re looking for labels? It has to be the Mailbox.
With designer fashions, aspirational homeware, chic bars and restaurants, sumptuous salons, and not to mention a spa, the Mailbox is perfect for label lovers who want a bit of rest and relaxation thrown in the bag, alongside that little something from Armani and Harvey Nichols.
From extravagant earrings to bespoke bracelets, almost half of the UK’s jewellery is handcrafted in Birmingham’s Jewellery Quarter. So whether you’re looking for a gift for that special someone or just treating yourself, you’ll find something to catch your eye here. Even if you’re not ring-shopping, the area’s still well worth a look. It’s full of history and charm, and when you’re tired of shopping you can enjoy a sit-down in one of the fashionable bars and cafes or just head back to the Premier Inn hotel near the Jewellery Quarter.
For second-hand clothes of the designer kind, St Mary’s Hospice Shop in Bournville is a charity shop like no other. With one-offs from Prada, Michael Kors and Ronit Zilkha, this ‘destination charity shop’ takes the cream of the clothes destined for other branches and sells them for £50 or less. Selling ladieswear only, the boutique has accessories, hats, jewellery and shoes, most of which are designer labels or high end high street brands. Shopping at this fashionista heaven is a pretty glam experience too - think chandelier lighting and personal shoppers who’ll find you that perfect little black dress.