While, at first sight, visitors might think that international and luxury brands dominate Luxembourg’s shopping scene, it’s well worth exploring the vibrant community of local shops. Here, Amy Sinner-Park, the owner of one of Luxembourg’s artisanal boutiques, shares her favourite places to spend time and money in the capital.
Once you step off the main shopping thoroughfares, you’ll discover the artisanal shops in Luxembourg City. Amy Sinner-Park, who runs The Modu Shop in the city, explains that it’s well worth eschewing the big chains for a smaller, more community-focussed shopping experience. “You’ll discover new brands, designs and craftsmanship that you wouldn’t necessarily find in the bigger retail chains, and the aesthetics look different than the big retail shops, as their independent spirit stands out,” she says. Here’s Sinner-Park’s guide to Luxembourg City’s best independent shops.
Located a stone’s throw from the Grand Ducal Palace, Luxembourg House is a unique concept store selling jewellery, fashion, scented candles, food, tableware and more, all made locally in Luxembourg. With the aim of helping visitors to the city discover incredible local products, Luxembourg House’s most popular collection is Signature Luxembourg, which includes silk scarfs, cups and bags. It’s all about the country’s visual identity, bridging modernity and tradition, and the national saying of “Let’s Make it Happen.” It’s the perfect place to buy gifts when you’re visiting the Grand Duchy – Sinner-Park particularly recommends it to travellers. “You’ll find Luxembourg souvenir products without all the kitsch you normally find when shopping for souvenirs.”
If you have a sweet tooth, you can’t miss stopping off at this shop, run by one of Luxembourg’s star chefs, Léa Linster. In 1989, she became the first (and to date, only) woman to win a gold medal at Bocuse d’Or – a competition often referred to as the culinary Olympics. Today, she regularly appears on German TV and is the figurehead of this fine tearoom. Next to the Grand Ducal Palace, the deli draws in customers with its incredible pastries and pâtés. According to Sinner-Park, it’s Linster’s madeleines that everybody is raving about: “They are the best I’ve ever had!” Unofficially, they go under the label as the best madeleines in the world; if you’re looking for a tasty souvenir from your time in the city, Boutique Léa Linster Delicatessen is the place to stop.
For Sinner-Park, a visit to The House of Villeroy and Boch is a must: “You’ll see beautiful craftsmanship at play.” Started by a father and his three sons in 1748, this ceramics company is considered by Luxembourgers to be an essential part of their local heritage. In this shop, located close to the central Place Guillaume II, you can purchase delicately decorated plates, cups and vases. Sinner-Park recommends searching through its collections for the perfect piece: “Its seasonal and Luxembourg-themed designs are great for when you want to gift a piece of Luxembourg heritage.”
Heading from Luxembourg City Center toward the Gare district, you can’t miss the art shop of Kritzel Fabrek by Jacques Schneider. In his shop, which also serves as his atelier, Schneider exhibits his photographs, which are enhanced with paint, but also black-and-white photographs of Luxembourg, art books, collages and much more. However, the star product is his ethical clothing collection. With characteristic prints in the Luxembourgish language, the shirts and hoodies emblazoned with ‘Leiwe Boy’ and ‘Fille Grand Ducale’ make a stylish and unique souvenir. Sinner-Park particularly enjoys shopping here; she calls Schneider “truly Luxembourg’s artist – all his work promotes his love for Luxembourg, the beauty of the land and the culture”.
Founded in 1922, Kaempff-Kohler is an institution and among the best family-owned shops in Luxembourg. Located at the central Place d’Armes, it’s a famed restaurant, gourmet caterer and delicatessen shop all rolled into one. If you’re looking for delicious souvenirs from Luxembourg (or even ingredients for a picnic while you’re in the city), head to Kaempff-Kohler, as it’s home to a large wine bar, an exceptional cheese selection and its legendary macarons. Sinner-Park’s top recommendation is the cheese, with many varieties made in Luxembourg on offer here.
It’s no longer a secret that Luxembourg produces high-quality wines; like most Luxembourgers, Sinner-Park is convinced that artisanal Luxembourg crémant (sparkling wine) “is one of the best things to bring to a dinner party!” To ensure you grab the best bottle, she says that you’ll want to go to Vinocity. Selling white, rosé and red wines by more than 300 local winemakers, the shop is managed by Domaines Vinmoselle, which encompasses small, traditional wineries from the Moselle region. Located in the residential district of Rollingergrund, Vinocity isn’t in an area that many visitors will stop by, but it’s well worth a visit, with the locality of the shop only adding to its charm.
Next to Place Guillaume II, Wanderscheid only opened its doors in November 2019, but it’s already become a local favourite for its delicious food, made solely in the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg. Managed by Veronica and Pit Wanderscheid, the shop aims to give visitors a magical experience of an old-style grocery shop. Sinner-Park says that it’s known for its “great selection of locally produced food products for anyone who wants to bring a taste of Luxembourg back home” and particularly recommends its Luxembourg coffee. “It was lovely!” You’ll also find shelves lined with Luxembourg honey, cheese and chocolates, so be sure to save room in your suitcase.
This list wouldn’t be complete without Sinner-Park’s shop. After moving from New York to Luxembourg, she decided to open a concept store where every purchase has a positive impact. The Modu Shop, located close to the quaint Place du Théâtre, has quickly become an institution in Luxembourg City. It hosts curated brands from all over the world, but the Luxembourg Market Bag is the shop’s bestseller. “The market bag is made in Bangladesh with a women’s project,” says Sinner-Park. “And I worked with the brands to customise unique souvenirs with Luxembourg written on them.” Sustainable and stylish, the bag is a perfect souvenir from the Grand Duchy.