Best Music Store: Music & Arts
Whatever you need, Music & Arts has it. Whether looking to rent an instrument, get one of yours tuned up or repaired or receive lessons, this is the place. For specialized instruments, check out the pro shop and there are always good finds in the clearance center. There are 15 locations of Music & Arts, including stores in Huntersville and Gastonia.
8046 Providence Road
Best Children’s Clothing: Once Upon A Child
Need a little extra cash for all of the clothes your kids have outgrown? Are you looking for that something special, but don’t want to pay retail? Once Upon A Child is the place to go as it buys and sells gently used toys, shoes and clothing, saving you money. It’s not only environmentally friendly, it’s friendly on your wallet, too.
Best Bookstore: Park Road Books
One of the cornerstones of Park Road Shopping Center since 1977, it is now the only full-service, independently owned bookstore in Charlotte. The store has signed copies of your favorite book, you can register your book club or browse the shelves where the helpful staff will help you find the perfect book. Also check out the frequent book signings.
4139 Park Road
Best Bridal Salon: New York Bride & Groom
From the most fabulous fashion-forward selections to the simple chic styles of today, New York Bride & Groom has the perfect dress for every taste. With 15,000 square feet and more than 1,000 gowns in stock coupled with the outstanding price points and a helpful staff why would you go anywhere else? They also have quite a few trunk shows worth your attention.
4618 South Blvd.
Best Cigar Store: Tinder Box of the Carolinas
The SouthPark store with the fabulous smokers lounge is the flagship location, but Tinder Box of the Carolinas continues to open new locations to match its popularity with cigar smokers. Since 1974, Tinder Box has offered the best selection, best prices and best specials. There are other stores, but you can only get the Tinder Box experience here.
SouthPark (4400 Sharon Road); Ballantyne (14825 Ballantyne Village Way); & Arboretum (3333 Pineville-Matthews Road)
Best Antiques: Sleepy Poet Antique Mall
There is no better way to live than the Sleepy Poet Antique Mall’s motto: No rhyme or reason, just cool stuff. There really is no telling what you’re going to find from the store’s eclectic and cool selections of unique and one-of-a-kind antique furniture, classic home décor, costume jewelry, vintage vinyl records, vintage clothing and mid-century modern finds. Try the new Gastonia location for even more deals.
4450 South Blvd.
Best Home Décor: Good’s Home Furnishings
There is everything under the sun at Good’s Home Furnishings. The home décor superstore has everything you could imagine in living room, dining room and kitchen settings, bedrooms, home office conversions, kids bedrooms, lighting and accessories, all-weather outdoor patio furniture and odds and ends. Don’t forget to check the huge clearance sections.
11735 Carolina Place Pkwy., Pineville
Best Jewelry Store: Diamonds Direct
The world-renowned direct diamond importer has changed the game by cutting out the middleman and offering unbeatable prices on everything, including wedding bands, designers, fine jewelry, diamonds, wedding bands and more. Also, there is the 110% lifetime trade-in upgrade, free cleaning and polishing and the best customer service in Charlotte.
4521 Sharon Road
Best Mattress Store: No Bull Mattress & More
No Bull Mattress & More is exactly what it sounds like – there is no bull, no haggling, no deceptive ads or phony markups, no pressure and no sales tactics. Expect to find a great mattress at a great price like the $390 king bamboo-infused memory foam model currently on sale. Check out their other locations in Matthews, Gastonia and the UNCC area.
2928 Monroe Road & 7143 South Blvd.
Best Consignment Store: Nouveaux Couture Consignment
Looking for Louis Vuitton, Chanel, Gucci, Prada, Tory Burch or other high-end designer goods? Find them at Nouveaux Couture Consignment at up to 70% off retail. This upscale consignment store deals with only top brand name like-new designer handbags, accessories and clothing. And, all consignments are always a 50-50 split.
14835 Ballantyne Village Way
Best Toy Store: Lego Store
One step inside the Lego Store at SouthPark takes you back to your childhood, but Legos have come a long way since then. You can purchase complete sets of the newest creations or make your own with popular create-a-person standalone center or customize your own sets with the wall of Legos. Also, find cool accessories and other gift ideas.
4400 Sharon Road
Best Women’s Boutique: Mainstream Boutique
Mainstream started in a small bedroom of founder Marie DeNicola, but has blossomed into an empire with boutiques in over 20 states. Mac and Me is Mainstream’s featured brand, inspired by DeNicola, and her only daughter, Mikayla “Mac” DeNicola Ketterling. The boutique is open every day of the week.
7314 Waverly Walk Ave.
Click here to see the other categories.