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Suzy Gershman's Born to Shop Italy: The Ultimate Guide for Travelers Who Love to Shop Paperback – January 7, 2010

18 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

" Breezy, passionate, opinionated, andwonderfully detailed."
National Geographic Traveler

"Gershman's may be the best guide for novice and pro shoppers alike."
The Washington Post

For over twenty years, Suzy Gershman has been leading savvy shoppers to the world's best finds.

Inside you'll find:

  • The best of the shopping scenes, from trendsettingboutiques in Milan and Rome to the nation's top factory outlets—plus colorful markets, unique crafts, and more

  • Excellent values, from designer shoes and handbags to Venetian glass and lace

  • Great gift ideas, even for a friend who has everything—plus the best gifts for less than $10

For a global shopping experience, check out Suzy Gershman's Where to Buy the Best of Everything.

About the Author

Suzy Gershman is a journalist, author, and global-shopping goddess who has worked in the fashion and fi ber industries for more than 25 years. Her essays on retailing have been used by the Harvard School of Business; her reportage on travel and retail has appeared in Travel + Leisure, Travel Holiday, Travel Weekly, and most of the major women's magazines. Suzy is also the author of C'est La Vie (Penguin Paperback), the story of her first year as a widow living in Paris, and Where to Buy the Best of Everything: The Outspoken Guide for World Travelers & Online Shoppers. She and her two longhaired dachshunds, Toffee and Junior Mint, divide their time between San Antonio, Texas (Suzy's childhood home); a small house in Provence; and the airport.
Suzy also gives shopping tours. Visit www.suzygershman.com or write to suzygershman@gmail.com for details. Suzy's blog address is www.borntoshoplady.blogspot.com.

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Product Details

  • Series: Born To Shop (Book 25)
  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: *Frommers; 13 edition (January 7, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 047053768X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0470537688
  • Product Dimensions: 4.3 x 0.7 x 7.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 2.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,048,238 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Suzy Gershman is an author, journalist and shopping goddess who for the last 27 years has pioneered the Born to Shop series of travel guidebooks. Having just sold her house in Provence, she has returned to California and partnered with Amazon and Talking Frog Media to revise existing and write new Born to Shop titles.

The first new book, written with Sarah Lahey, is Born to Shop California Wine Country which will be available through amazon.com after September 1, 2010. Gershman and Lahey will follow up with books on Provence and the surrounding area (including Geneva and Barcelona), Asia (Tokyo, Kyoto, Bangkok, Manila, etc) and then the next edition of Born to Shop London, which will be ready pre-Olympics.

Gershman is currently living in Paso Robles, California, a small food and wine town she discovered while doing the research for Born to Shop California Wine Country. She is writing Merci, Madame -- something of a sequel to her memoire C'est la Vie, but a story about Gershman's house in Provence, the lifestyle in Provence and the Frenchman who asked for her hand in marriage.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

49 of 53 people found the following review helpful By stellina on February 22, 2007
Format: Paperback
Since I'm planning another trip to Italy this year, I got the current edition on a whim. I had bought an old version several years ago on a discount rack when I first started traveling to Europe and I found a fair bit of the information helpful, but this one is a disappointment in several ways. As others have pointed out, much of the information is quite obviously inaccurate or out of date. Furthermore, this is not much good as a shopping guide unless you have money to burn since it is heavily skewed toward the high-end designer market. The author throws in a few snippets from her younger associates about more affordable places to shop but that's not enough. Admittedly, Italy hasn't been a bargain hunter's paradise for many years, even before the currency conversion that has almost ruined shopping in Europe for us Americans, but there really are many affordable options for the average traveler. Just take a look on Virtual Tourist or some fo the other travel forums & you'll find a wealth of advice. From that & my own searches, I've found a pile of good shopping information. Now if I can do that on my own, surely Gershman and her team could have done a better job of research, especially if they have the nerve to charge money for it.

However, my real problem is with Gershman's attitude, which has clearly worsened between the date of my old edition and the present one. The woman is a snob, plain and simple. If you don't catch this from her over-emphasis on designer goods, you'll figure it out from all of her complaining about Italy being overrun with tourists (obviously forgetting that she is one herself)and the Italian merchants taking advantage of this by offering more & more junk.
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21 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Helen on July 27, 2005
Format: Paperback
Don't bother buying this book. First, none of the Born To Shop books get updated much between editions, so lots of information is out of date. Second, Suzy Gershman is totally out of touch with reality. I took a shopping tour to Italy with a company called Shop Around Tours and obviously a lot of us had this book. The tour leader warned us not to pay too much attention to it and she was right. BUT we went to Mantero, which is one of the places mentioned in the book, and it was great. Otherwise, the people that went off on their own following Suzy's wild goose chases were very disappointed. So the shopping in Italy was great, but this book was a waste of money.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 31, 2004
Format: Paperback
I agree with many of the other comments here. There are glaring errors all throughout this book, as well as the other Born To Shop books. If you have an older edition, there's no need to buy the new one, as there has been almost nothing updated. The Born To Shop books are a fun read, but do your own homework before following any of the suggestions. Sometimes I think Suzy Gershman really needs to get a clue!
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Sandy on March 30, 2005
Format: Paperback
Suzy Gershman needs to retire already. All of her books, including this one, are full of inaccuracies. Each edition is barely updated, so there's no need to buy the new version if you have an old one. It's time Frommers dropped Gershman and hired someone under the age of 70 to update these books that shops NOW and knows what they're talking about. These Born To Shop books are an amusing read but a complete waste of money if you're looking for current information.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful By ann dexter on January 14, 2004
Format: Paperback
This guide gives a lot of information but some glaring errors. The Etro factory is in Milan not in Como, Pavia is a city south of Milan and not in Tuscany etc. I also do not necessarily want to know about the authors hot flashes while trying on cashmere sweaters.
Ann Dexter, Rome
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By John M. Walker on September 14, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I found much of the ROME content of this book already outdated.
With the economy and rising Euro, I urge Suzy to look for more affordable stores... and more "cheap and cheerful" items to take home. For example, I enjoyed my visit to the UPIM. It's a great place for affordable costume jewelry, Italian soaps and cosmetics. I also liked the clothes... and the price... plus there's a nice UPIM at the train station. I also found a fun store called "LA LA" which sells cool jewelry for between 10-20 Euros. The Vatican post office is a treasure box for quality religious items. Affordable, Vatican sanctioned and Pope blessed.. Who could ask for more? Lastly, don't overlook the street vendors and newsstands. They're a great source for scarfs, calenders and cheap murano glass necklaces. By the way, I love Suzy... It's just cheaper now to buy your Prada and Tods at Neiman Marcus here in the states... Don't go to Rome thinking you're going to fill your closets.
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11 of 14 people found the following review helpful By irma_vep on April 1, 2004
Format: Paperback
...even if shopping is not your primary travel goal.
Suzy is a hoot -- she reminds me of a little less mean Joan Rivers. I love all her Born to Shop books, and must admit that I use them to guide me through any city she's written about, even if I don't plan to do crazy shopping while there. If you're a person who, like me, learns more about culture and civilization in bars and shops all over the world than from great museums, these are for you. I have never had an experience with bad or out-dated information in her books, and her recommendations have guided me to treasured purchases that remind me of my European rambles and bring a smile to my face whenever I wear them. Suzy has a great eye and a lot of inside information and tips that will help you make the most of your mad money, even if all you plan to bring home with you is gifts. I especially appreciate her inclusion of street markets, vintage shopping and flea markets; great for fashionistas who are not glossy fashion magazine zombies, and for those who are looking for passable knock-offs of designer goods. Suzy's books also include wonderful cheap, on-the-go eating ideas for your busy, busy days, and she includes these stops as she tells you how to plan your shopping route to maximize your time.
The Paris, London and Italy books are superb. These, and skinny Eyewitness Top 10 guide books are all I need!
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