Nairobi’s Best Souvenir and Antique Shops

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Nairobi is a great place to buy for souvenirs, relive your best memories, and learn about Kenyan cuisine, culture, and technology. Here are some of the best Souvenir and Antique Shops:


KAZURI BEAD FACTORY.

Mbagathi Ridge in Karen, Nairobi, is home to the Kazuri bead industry. The Swahili term "Kazuri" means "little and lovely." Tourists from Nairobi who are interested in ceramics, bead-making, and jewelry designs frequent this location. Customers are drawn to the calm peacefulness of the environment. The firm distributes its goods to a number of conveniently positioned shopping centers, allowing it to serve customers from all over the world. In Nairobi, these include the Westgate and Sarit shopping malls. Visitors can take a tour of the facility and learn about each phase of the bead-making process. The firm was established to give jobs for single moms and to improve their living conditions.

Bracelets made of beads with special significance to the Maasai community abound on the market. The various colors, according to the jewelers, represent a phenomenon. The crimson beads, for example, would represent power and blood. As a result, warriors use them exclusively. Women's fertility and prosperity are symbolized by the color green. Necklaces (the most prevalent), earrings, and chokers are all options for the beads. Direct purchase from the Maasai community is the most suitable method of obtaining the beads.


KITENGELA GLASS.
This is a reference to the artistic community that exists inside the tranquility of Nairobi. The glass industry is a high-end industry that caters to the wealthy. The primary goal was to increase the number of disabled artisans who left the facility, the majority of whom were employed there. Tourists spend hours upon hours touring this area, admiring the artisanal glass objects on display, which include beautiful animals, jugs, vases, and stained-glass windows, among other things. Gigantic oxen and glass murals are among the mystical sculptures that have been sold, according to sales reports.


TRIANGLE CURIOS MARKET.

The market is located in Nairobi's Westland neighborhood, directly across from the Sarit Centre roundabout. Kenyan handicrafts and souvenirs are abundant in the market, and they are reasonably priced. All tribal jewelry is offered here at a reasonable price. This market caters to art enthusiasts. The lovebirds are catered to here, with the most expensive gold necklaces, bridal rings, and every sophisticated type of jewelry for sale.


GOODIE’S AFRICAN INTERIOR AND GIFT SHOP.
Apart from necklaces and other jewelry, the Maasai utilize beads to craft bowls, plates, and other objects required to transport daily items. Certain establishments will create items to order, ranging from coasters to wine baskets. Because each piece is hand-beaded to construct the item, finishing a large bowl or decorative piece can take weeks. The Goodies' African Interiors & Gifts boutique is an excellent place to begin your shopping experience. If you have the time, you can get your beaded bowl custom-made, specifying the size, color, and kind of beads (ceramic, glass, or wood). Alternatively, choose from one of the bowls already on sale in the store. They range in price from approximately $5 for a small ashtray-size bowl to well over $100 for a fruit bowl. Because the bowls are unlined, they are not intended to store liquids or anything else that can stain or attach to the bead work.


HILTON NAIROBI HOTEL CURIO SHOP
Traditional sculptures, such as the ones depicting “The Great Five” (lion, buffalo, elephant, rhino, and leopard) are a good choice, no matter the size. Giraffes are an especially popular choice, but they tend to be very large (some up to 10 feet high), so you would have to plan the shipping well in advance. There are three types of woods traditionally used for wood carvings: mango trees, Neem trees and ebony. Ebony is rarer and more expensive, so if you’re on a budget, look for the other two options, which are lighter in both color and weight. Makonke carvings are considered the best and are made using mpingo or African Blackwood. They are usually in the form of animals or busts (human figures). Because of their price and quality, Makonke carvings are only sold at fine galleries and shops in the city.

 Start your search at the Collectors Den Store, located inside the shopping arcade at the Hilton Nairobi. The store specializes in hand-carved ebony and soapstone items, all made by indigenous people of Kenya. Otherwise, head to Jigsaw Designs, on the ground floor of the Sarit Centre, if you’re looking for large items. Jigsaw stocks carved items that go from small figurines, which would look good on a mantle, to four-poster beds and major objects of art made completely out of wood. Prices start at U$50 and up for the smaller items, so expect to spend some money there.


ADELPI LEATHER STORE.

The store is located in Nairobi's Yaya centre, which is in the tranquil Kilimani neighborhood. The store specializes in hand-woven baskets, which are known as "Kondos" in the area. These baskets are used to transport food and are available in a variety of sizes and prices. There are several types of materials that can be used in weaving. The most common include sisal fiber, leather trimmings, woven beads, and shells. Their kiondos include a cloth lining (which is not a feature of traditional kiondos), which makes them acceptable for use as purses and for carrying tiny objects without the fear of losing any of the items inside them. Kiondos can be purchased for as cheap as a few dollars at markets, but the ones sold at Adelphi are more expensive, costing up to $15.


Be sure to visit one store and get your loved one a gift or something for your best moments in Kenya.