If you want to treat yourself to an afternoon's shopping among craftsmanship and history, you really must experience Vicenza's Historical Shops in the old centre, all members of the Botteghe Storiche Cultural Association, which was set up with the aim of contributing to the cultural and economic development of the city by promoting manifestations that inform the Italian and international public of the historical heritage of Vicenza of which the 'botteghe' are an integral part.
Among the member stores, which are still a reference point for city life and upholders of the artisan and artistic traditions of the province as well as the history of Vicenza commerce, is the Osteria al Grottino in Piazza delle Erbe, the ideal place to enjoy a drink in the shadow of the Basilica Palladiana, or the Antica Bottega Artistica Dal Toso, just a stone's throw away from Porta S. Lucia, where the ancient art of copper-beating has been handed down for four generations.
Then there is the Cappelleria Palladio, in business since the beginning of the 1900s offering an incomparable selection of elegant and casual men's and ladies' hats and scarves, all rigorously handmade by skilful artisans. In an atmosphere steeped in antiquity is Rossi Illuminazione with over 40 years' experience in the world of lamps, lampshades and light fittings, and also Pozzan Colori, located close to Teatro Olimpico, which specializes in paints, enamels, paint brushes, easels and tools for painting. Not to forget the delightful Pendoleria Soprana, founded on a passion for ornamental clocks, particularly antique ones.