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Giza, Cairo, Egypt.
Adidas: Sportswear Shopping in Haram
Haram Street in Giza is famous for two things; seedy nightclubs and the Pyramids. However, there is a small section, two-thirds of the way down toward the Pyramids at the intersection with El Areesh Street that has become a centre of congregation for the area’s trendiest youths. There’s a Hardees, a KFC, a Cook Door, a shopping mall to hang outside of, and much more. Hidden away at a small stairway next to Hardees is an amalgamation of a shop that sports the names of Adidas, but also contains a small section of Timberland stock.
The majority of the Adidas shoes available are more sportswear-appropriate; with little to no choice if you’re looking for casual footwear. They range in price at between 499LE to 799LE, but at the time of this reviewer’s visit, there were some items reduced by 20%. With regards to the rest of the stock, it again seems to cater much more to seekers of sportswear and not casual wear.
Plain cotton-polyester blend t-shirts are available in a range of colours for 250LE, while cotton long-sleeved and short-sleeved tops set you back between 299LE and 399LE, and come in several designs, including the colours and badges of some national football teams such as Brazil and Germany. The thing that stood out the most was a collection of old-school Adidas bags and holdalls. Unfortunately, like the rest of the stock, they are grossly overpriced, with the smallest bag priced at 299LE, and the biggest selling for 499LE.
The most peculiar pricing in the shop comes in the way of the official Al Ahly football shirt, which sells here for 269LE. The same replica shirt is sold in the official Al Ahly shop in Mohandiseen for 129LE, with the real version of the shirt selling for 250LE; a shocking disparity in price.
In regards to the Timberland collection, a large collection of jeans caters mostly to wearers of straight and loose fits, and range between 699LE and 799LE. When put into context, they aren’t that much more expensive than you’d find at Levi’s and considerably cheaper than you’d find at a designer shop like Calvin Klein; but it does seem an extortionate price to pay. If you are looking for long-term investment in a standard pair of jeans, then Timberland’s collection is worth a look; they feel sturdy and durable, and are available in larger sizes. A small range of slacks are also available for summer, and at 599LE they aren’t cheap. Like the jeans, they are of good quality, and come in beige, khaki, green and grey.
A range of chequered short-sleeved shirts are available for 499LE, and t-shirts sporting the Timberland name will set you back between 250LE and 350LE. The highlight of the Timberland section is the shoe collection, with most occasions covered for men’s footwear. You can grab yourself a pair of boat shoes for summer in brown, beige and dark, worn brown for 699LE.
As is common in retail in Cairo the staff is incredibly intrusive. They probably think they’re helping, but it’s absurdly discomforting. Where does this policy of shadowing come from?These brands will invariably retail at the same prices, but this branch’s small range is disconcerting. There are some standout items, but even the biggest spendthrifts will think carefully before parting with their money here.
Whilst shopping in Cairo can be a stressful experience due to consistently overcrowded malls, the newer, less busy areas of the city are welcoming some of the most popular names. Fast developing on New Cairo’s Road 90, the Concord Plaza Mall is home to a small Nike store; one of the leading names in sportswear.
Spread over two floors, the shop is orderly, with men’s wear on the ground floor, and women’s and kids sections upstairs. At the time of our visit, there was a sale on, with offers of up to 50% off . Neatly folded and hung, there appeared to be limited numbers of each item, making the displays seem a little sparse.
The men’s section was the most diverse, complete with several different styles of tracksuit bottoms and tops (400LE+), a few pairs of shorts and a range of colourful t-shirts and polo tops, largely adorned with the Nike logo spewed across the front. We also spotted an entire wall dedicated to a collection of footballs and basketballs, alongside football team caps (139LE), gloves, socks, and a very limited number of rucksacks (329LE) and sports bags. The trainer range was good but not overly impressive, with a large number of neon coloured football boots and running shoes taking the attention. Casual, navy plimsolls with a large white tick were also on display at 699LE.
Undeniably a little neglected when compared to the men’s section, the women’s section was a mish-mash of ill-fitting work out gear. Despite this overall impression, we did see a number of appealing, fleecy tracksuit bottoms, more suited to lounging than working out (300LE+). Plain, zip-up hoodies were reduced from 549LE to 439LE whilst plain t-shirts were priced at 160LE from 229LE. Lycra tracksuit bottoms were also available, but all seemed to be loose fitting round the calves, rather than the more fashionable, skinny cut. Gym fanatics would also be dismayed at the absence of any sports bras, shorts or tight fitting tops; the majority of t-shirts were loose fitting with novelty motifs across the front.
Limited largely to a running range, the trainers were the most exciting part of the collection, up-to-date with the latest neon designs. Although tame in comparison with the one's available at other stores, a black pair with bright pink ticks was on sale at 999LE, whilst the other designs begun at around 400LE. Beach flip flops were also on sale, available in bright colours, with rubber y-shaped straps.
The children’s range reflected the same motif t-shirts, tracksuits and jumpers, with a notable addition of packs of socks (150LE), and a smaller range of trainers.
Appearing as more of an outlet for last season’s dregs, with the exception of the footwear collections and basic sportswear, this Nike store is far from being a serious competitor to some of the larger stores close-by.