The ultimate Gold Coast shopping guide
The Gold Coast’s culinary, arts and music scenes are thriving but it’s the retail landscape that’s really helped transform the city into a world-class destination.
The new Gold Coast can now hold its own against its stylish southern sisters, Sydney and Melbourne, with a plethora of boutiques, re-imagined shopping centres, hip designer markets and premium global brands.
When you’re in need of a retail fix, we’ve put together the ultimate Gold Coast shopping tour – from Coolangatta to Biggera Waters – where shoppers can find everything from boardshorts to Balmain and bargain vintage finds.
As the French name suggests, this is a store for those who prefer minimalist chic to the boardshorts and bikinis traditionally found in Coolangatta.
Offering a slick edit of men’s and women’s labels like Equipment, Bec & Bridge, Dylan Kain, Nobody Denim, Camilla and Marc and Commoners, make Moelleux a must for investment pieces.
Where: The Strand at Coolangatta, 72 Marine Parade Coolangatta.
For a stylish take on Gold Coast beach culture, head to Salt Living. A curated mixture of sea essentials, homewares, clothing and accessories, this lifestyle store offers labels like Byron Bay’s St Agni, Sancia and Zulu & Zephyr.
Lust-have beach staple? The Beach People Round Towels.
Where: The Stand at Coolangatta, 72 Marine Parade Coolangatta.
Psst! Staying in Coolangatta? Here’s how to spend 48 hours wisely.
Surf culture is synonymous with the Gold Coast lifestyle and it doesn’t get bigger or better than the much-loved Kirra Surf.
Located in the Gold Coast’s surfing heartland, this is the largest surf store in the Southern Hemisphere and has an impressive selection of iconic brands like Volcom, Roxy, Billabong, Rusty, Rhythm and Von Zipper as well as emerging labels like Thrills and Rollas. They sell boards, skateboard decks and accessories, too.
Where: 8 Creek Street, Coolangatta.
An architecturally designed space, Cornerstone is home to Little Loves Studio, botanical gem The Borrowed Nursery, activewear store Prae, Quince Fromagerie – the CHEESE! – and Kind Curations, which boasts a slick edit of local and US labels like Stone Cold Fox and Christy Dawn.
Better yet, you can grab a coffee – or a cocktail – and some delicious fare at Stable Coffee and Kitchen and take a load off after your retail therapy. It also has ample parking and a grassed area if you have the kids in tow.
Where: 570 Gold Coast Highway, Tugun.
A little oasis tucked in an emerging industrial area, this independent boutique is a go-to for unique homewares, furniture, art, artwork, books, plants, gifts and clothing, including ethical fashion label, Oakie.
Parking is tricky so try Tea Tree Avenue or the small parking area on the opposite side of the road to Gather.
Where: 1/56 Currumbin Creek Road, Currumbin Waters.
The Young Ones
For stylish clothes, swimwear, accessories and toys for little people, this mother and daughter-owned store – a stone’s throw from Currumbin Beach – stocks labels like Feather Drum, Baby Bird, Monouche, Children of the Tribe and Summer and Storm. Their selection of books is also hard to resist.
Where: 5/972 Pacific Parade, Currumbin.
White Bohemian Store
There’s no denying Palm Beach has undergone a major metamorphosis in recent times with new bars, shops and restaurants opening up what seems like every week.
Tucked away beside a convenience store and takeaway shops, you’ll find this family-owned store, a haven for free-spirited babes. Shop cult Byron Bay labels Spell, Arnhem, Fallen Broken Street and Auguste as well as successful Gold Coast brand, Kivari, and emerging favourite, Cabo Gypsy.
Where: 6/1160 Gold Coast Highway, Palm Beach.
The Village Markets
From its humble beginnings in 2008, TVM – as the locals know it – has become one of Australia’s most-loved boutique designer markets. Held on the first and third Sunday of the month, TVM offers an impressive mix of homewares, fashion, art, ceramics, candles, linen, footwear, accessories and swimwear from emerging designers and artisans along with live music and delightful food truck fare.
Established brands like Peony Swimwear, Zulu and Zephyr and Kivari started out at TVM, and founders Marissa Bowden and Sarah Schoeller were recently finalists in the Cosmopolitan Women of the Year Awards for helping 2000 small businesses get their start.
Where: Burleigh Heads State School, Lower Gold Coast Highway, Burleigh Heads.
James Street Strip
Across the road from the iconic Burleigh point is one of the Coast’s best shopping precincts. After a dip at the beach, cruise over to James Street for independent boutiques selling fashion, accessories, homewares and art plus plenty of cafes and juice bars when you need to refuel.
Try Sean Scott Boutique for local brand-turned-international success story, Valley Eyewear, Assembly label or one of photographer Sean Scott’s iconic framed images. Bikini and Me is a great spot for swimwear or head to the Rhythm store for fashion-forward surf wear.
For homewares, don’t miss Village Stores or Maison & Maison for globally sourced gems. When the sun goes down, Justin Lane is just around the corner for a glass of rosé on the rooftop. Or, pop across the road for a cocktail and a bug roll at Rick Shores. Delightful.
Where: James Street, Burleigh Heads.
The Freedom State
Hidden in the Old Burleigh Theatre Arcade, this boutique is a must for lovers of bohemian luxe.
Owner Mandy Bell is passionate about supporting Aussie brands as well as some international favourites. You’ll find pieces from Byron Bay label, Spell, Temple of the Sun jewellery, Kivari, Amuse Society and their own exclusive brand, The Freedom State.
Where: Shop 4, Old Burleigh Theatre Arcade. 64 Goodwin Terrace, Burleigh Heads.
Robina Town Centre
This Gold Coast favourite is a shopaholic’s dream with more than 400 shops and restaurants to tempt you.
With Australian department stores David Jones and Myer surrounded by all your favourite Australian and international brands, plus cinemas, restaurants and a bowling alley, you can easily spend the whole day at Robina Town Centre.
Foodies will be in their element at The Kitchens, a $160 million industrial-style urban marketplace.
There’s plenty of parking and Robina Station is located 800m from the centre with trains running to Brisbane’s CBD.
Where: Robina Town Centre Drive, Robina.
This Gold Coast retail icon recently underwent a $670 million redevelopment and is now a world-class shopping hub.
Located next to The Star Gold Coast and across the road from the ocean, you will find a mix of global brands including Louis Vuitton, Prada, Christian Louboutin and Chanel, international chains like H&M and Zara plus Australian labels Zimmermann, Scanlan Theodore, Aje, Alpha 60 and Dion Lee.
The dining is just as good as the shopping with a bunch of restaurants to suit every taste and budget.
Pacific Fair is just a short walk from G:Link light rail Broadbeach South Station, and they also offer a free shopping shuttle service, which operates daily. Head to their website for pick up locations and times.
Where: Hooker Blvd, Broadbeach.
It’s ground zero for most first-time visitors to the Gold Coast and Surfers Paradise is still a good place for a spot of retail therapy if you know where to look.
It’s a duty-free haven but you can also find stores like Billabong, Roxy, Surf Dive N Ski, and the UGG store. There’s also luxury boutiques and a plethora of kitsch souvenir shops for a fun reminder of your Gold Coast holiday.
Where: Cavill Ave, The Paradise Centre, Chevron Renaissance Shopping Centre.
Surfers Paradise Beachfront Markets
A colourful and relaxed way to spend an afternoon, the popular Surfers Paradise Beachfront Markets are held every Wednesday, Friday and Sunday night from 4pm until 9pm.
A hit with domestic and international tourists, expect 100-plus stalls selling [mostly] locally made or produced pieces including jewellery, fashion and souvenirs.
Where: The Esplanade, Surfers Paradise.
Psst! Not into shopping? We’ve got plenty of things for you to do while all that browsing and trying-on is going on.
Boasting million-dollar views, this waterfront shopping, dining and lifestyle destination oozes class.
For Lover, Equipment, Rag & Bone and IRO, hit up Janine Edwards or stop by the award-winning Calleija Jewellers for something ultra special (a rare yellow diamond, perhaps?). For something for the kids, Seed is a firm favourite of local mamas.
Once you’re given the plastic a workout, settle into one of the marina’s waterfront restaurants and bars.
Where: 74 Sea World Drive, Main Beach.
Harbour Town Outlet Shopping Centre
For those with Champagne tastes on modest budgets, Harbour Town has you covered. This open-air outlet centre houses a growing list of brands like Coach, Oroton, Adidas, Converse and UGG all offering 30% to 70% off the recommended retail price.
You don’t even need to worry about wheels to get there. Jump on the free Outlet Shopping Shuttle, which runs from Tuesday through to Saturday from four locations across the coast.
Once there, head to the Tourism Lounge to pick up a complimentary Tourism Club Card offering additional discounts. It would be rude not to, right?
Where: 147-189 Brisbane Road, Biggera Waters.
What’s your favourite Gold Coast shopping spot? Share with us below.
*This post was first published in 2014 and updated in March 2018.