The city of Austin has been aptly named ‘The Silicon Hills’ due to a large concentration of hi-tech industries in the area which led to the dotcom boom. These companies found the city to be ideal for their purpose because of the easy availability of specialized manpower supplied by prestigious universities and colleges in the form of hundreds of engineering and computer science graduates. However, the popping of the dotcom bubble spurred the entrepreneurs into diversification which led to the establishment of a number of pharmaceutical and biotechnology firms. In addition to global enterprises, Austin’s economy is driven by a number of locally owned and independent commercial enterprises that have their own unique identity in the city.
Austin is a shopper’s paradise and some of the well-known shopping malls are listed as follows:
Allen Boots is the store to be visited if one wants to dress up like a cowboy or a cowgirl because it specializes in well known authentic western apparel brands like Tony Lama, Justin and Old Gringo.
The Austin Renaissance Market, located in an area normally referred to as ‘The Drag’ caters to the needs of college students, tourists, as well as locals as it offers all kinds of choices in the categories of jewelry, apparel, leather products, and home, made art and craft items.
The South Congress Avenue, also known as SoCo, is an upscale shopping area consisting of trendy boutiques, art galleries, new chic venues, and Bohemian shops which cater to celebrities as well as commoners. The area also features sushi joints, thrift stores, music clubs and coffee houses which are equipped to serve the high-end clientele.
The Yard Dog Folk Art is a shopping store that is ideal for art lovers and artists because a visit to this venue promises a lot of color and creativity through the work of local and national artists.
The store Women and Their Work Arts, as the name suggests, specializes in selling works of art made by women in a bid to encourage women artists. Encouragement is also provided in the fields of stage performances and literary talents.
The West Sixth Street is renowned not only for its shopping but also for entertainment and local festivals which are held there frequently. This shopping district reflects the true eclectic nature of the city as people from diverse backgrounds come here to shop for antiques, specialty items and artworks.
Apart from the shopping stores, Austin is also home to a number of specialty stores, some of which are listed as follows:
The Anderson Coffee Company was established in 1972 and since then it has been serving freshly brewed coffee, specialty coffee, funky coffee and tea novelties for those who revel the different flavors and are adventurous enough to try new varieties of these beverages.
The Clarksville Pottery and Galleries started as a small pottery studio and over a period of time expanded and grew to become one of the most sought after shopping destinations for people who wished to forage for jewelry, hand-blown glass, woodworks, watches and hand-thrown pottery.
The shop Breed and Co. is an all-purpose store which sell patio furniture, gardening accessories, gourmet food, kitchen gadgets, and chinaware.
The Austin Antique Mall is the venue for buying original antiques, collectibles, glassware and furniture.