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Looking for the Authentic Curacao Atmosphere?

Otrobanda is at the other side of Punda, the Point, or the city. From Punda you have to cross the Sint Annabaai or Saint Anna Bay by walking accross the pontoon bridge or by using the Ferry to get to Otrobanda. This is where you will find the most authentic Curacao shops and people. The main street through Otrobanda is called De Breedestraat, or Broadway.

Breedestraat Otrabanda Willemstad, Curacao

The Breedestraat, Broadway, entering from the Punda side.

Often tourists hesitate to walk the Breedestraat, because it looks dodgy. But as soon as we moved to Curacao ourselves, we noticed an interesting thing: Places and people are not as they appear during your first impression. You may think from your perspective that you better avoid a certain place, but then you are going to miss some of the best experiences.

In the Breedestraat you will find very original shops, and of course also the typical Indian souvenir shops. One of the original shops you should visit is the shop called Beauty Art. It is like half a mile walk from the Sint Annabaai, or Saint Anna Bay. The owner is mr Khazam, whose anchestors originated from Lebanon. He sells all sorts of handmade souvenirs in his shop, like flipflops, wind chimes, hammocks, straw hats, mahogany art and much more. What I can recommend are the original Curacao wind chimes, easy to pack and bring to your home. They look nice on a porch or in your garden.

Beauty Art, Breedestraat Otrabanda, Curacao

Beauty Art, easy to miss, but you’ll find it on your left had side starting from the Sint Annabaai.

The shop looks like a mess, and there is no denying of that. But if you go in, mr. Khazam is a very welcoming person, speaks good English too. He is always very happy when tourists come in. He probably realizes most tourists prefer organized shops. His shop has been located in the Breedestraat since a long time.

Souvenir shop Cuuracao

Mr. Khazam in the middle of his merchandize. Be careful where you put your feet!

When we lived on Curacao years ago, I already bought myself a nice Montecristi toquilla straw hat from Ecuador from him. When I recently visited Curacao, I bought myself another one and again had a nice chat with mr Khazam. He can tell you many things about the old days, how the Breedestraat was the shopping heart of Willemstad. In a modest way he is a charming salesman, he points out all of his products but in a relaxed way. If you give him the time to do so, you will be able to look back on an authentic Curacao shopping experience.


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