Be cool, spend smart

Moscow, Russia

6 places

Lilia Brainis

Shopping in Moscow is not cheap. Let’s be honest: one can buy many things abroad for a much better price. However, if you decide to spend your money, do it wisely. We have chosen the shops that are worth leaving your rubles with them and, most importantly, that can give you a unique chance to meet the real fans of their profession, be it fashion, books or vinyl records.


Maxim, the owner of this book store, hates buzzing about the decreasing popularity of paperback books. He has been in the book business for years now and he has always been behind this counter. “My dream is supremacy of knowledge in the society of future, I want to set a thinking trend and I spare no efforts in encouraging people to read”, says Maxim. You can find here novelties of Russian and foreign book markets and antiquarian books ardently collected by Maxim. Numerous book presentations and interesting lectures are held and all the outstanding writers' and poets' birthdays are proudly celebrated here.

Chook and Geek

Ivan and Vasily used to study in the same university group. Two historians-philologists were really interested in graphic novels. Upon graduation both of them worked at the comics publishing house. But once the office routine made them left their job and they started steady life of unemployed people. They spent hours watching comic strips by Frank Miller and Alex Ross. But it's not so easy to survive in Moscow with no money as it isn't easy to find good comics here. So Ivan and Vasily got the business idea and that is how the first comics shop in the city was founded. You can not only buy popular editions, rare books or even comics by Russian artists in the "Chook and Geek" shop but also meet true fans of graphic novels and feel like "The Big Bang Theory" hero.

DiG Vinyl Shop

This genuinely cool vinyl store was founded by three young DJ-s: Ivan aka DJ Fat Slut, Grigory aka DJ Gringoo and Petr aka DJ Chivanat. They create music, hunt for rare records and help visitors in their store to find what they need. Every weekend they make concerts of young bands and DJs, lectures and movie screening, presentations and parties here in their store. This store was even once visited by Elijah Wood and Limp Bizkit. Except vinyl records of Russian and foreign sound-recording firms you can find here some rare books, comics and magazines of countercultural and musical orientation.

Moskva Bookstore

24/7 "Moskva" Bookstore is a book lovers paradise just a stone's throw from the Kremlin. People sleeping on the numerous couches and huge pillows are nothing to be surprised about. They are frequenters of the famous Russian State Library located just opposite the store. Because of the cozy cafe with free wi-fi the store has become a permanent habitat for Moscow intellectuals. There are more than 15 000 books on the 1 000 square meters area so bookstore workers move around on kick scooters. Numerous cultural events, meetings with authors, presentations and lectures are also held here.

Tsvetnoy Central Market

Tsvetnoy Central Market deserves attention literally starting from the entrance. The building created by the architect Yuri Grigoryan is unique for contemporary Moscow. It depends on the season which route to choose when in Tsvetnoy Central Market. In summer you go right up to the roof café with marvelous city view. In winter down to the basement where you will find a Christmas market with local designers stuff. The fifth floor is interesting with its farmers market and gastronomy points (one of them is really Soviet like with all those traditional salads and cutlets). The brand locating scheme is as follows: make up and mass-market goods are downstairs, luxurious brands and selective perfumes upstairs. The upper the floor the higher the prices. Acne, MM6 Maison Martin Margiela, Edun, All Saints, Maje, Sandro, Zadig & Voltair, Reiss, A.P.C., Cédric Charlier, Paul & Joe Sister, Vivienne Westwood are among the brands here. Not everybody keeps in mind a perfume and beauty corner on the third floor though it's the only place in Moscow where perfume maniacs can buy Mai Couture and April Aromatics products.


Vadim Dymov is a Russian businessman famous for starting up cultural and art oriented business projects. Among these the bookstore chain Respublika takes a very particular place. They say that sometimes even Vadim Dymov himself works incognito as a shop-assistant. It's not just another usual bookstore you might expect, but a whole universe of "big things with the accent on lovely small ones". Here you may find the three intellectual life foundations which are books, music records, movies in ideally balanced proportion. "Smart" bestsellers, architecture and art albums, comics, memoirs and biographical works are dressed with a lifestyle forming stuff. When in one of the Respublika shops, take a look at the information desk where you can always find useful tips about gigs and lectures happening around town. However gigs and lectures are frequent in Respublika stores as well.


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