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Heliopolis, Cairo, Egypt.
Mobaco: Quality Cotton Goods in Heliopolis
Shopping for quality cotton products in Cairo is not an easy affair; a fact which makes us all the more grateful for retailers like Mobaco. Located on the second floor of Citystars' phase one, Mobaco is a spacious shop that could take hours to thoroughly go through. Once inside, the men's collection is to your left and the women's collection can be found to your right.
The men's section carries an abundance of polo shirts (160LE), dress shirts, t-shirts and blazers (380LE). Also available are bathing suits starting at 124LE.
After quickly scanning the men's section, we realized the women's section was far more colourful and interesting. Mobaco's dresses are its best feature; available in all lengths and patterns, they are perfect summer companions.
An ankle-length button-up denim frock costs 245LE, while a simple ankle-length dress is priced at 650LE. A loose-fitting orange floral dress had a price tag of 440LE, and a grey button-up dress with yellow, white and green flowers sold for 329LE. For 530LE you can get a powder pink and white knee-length floral dress with spaghetti straps.
Polo shirts, both long-sleeved and short-sleeved, come in a wide selection of colours starting at 124LE. Mobaco also carries basic t-shirts in all sorts of colours for 260LE. Although the price might seem a bit high for a basic design, the quality of Mobaco’s items is unsurpassable.
Mobaco's cotton skirts also come in a range of styles and colours. A white knee-length cotton skirt is for 440LE; maxi skirts are also available in several colours starting at 200LE. Another collection of maxi skirts by New Man are priced at 299LE.
You can also find sheer tunics for 490LE, denim shorts (490LE) and bolero jackets (315LE). Skinny trousers also come in several colours, such as royal blue, green, red, caramel and white.
Linen suits are also on offer; starting at 169LE for the trousers and 279LE for the blazer. For 219LE you can get yourself a basic pullover, while cotton cardigans – light enough to wear on a hot summer’s day – come in a variety of colours and are priced at 145LE.
In terms of accessories, Mobaco carries summer totes for 240LE and a chic pleather camel handbag was a bit overpriced at 450LE. Although Mobaco's handbag collection is pretty limited, it doesn't hurt to have a look around.
Some of Mobaco's prices might be a bit high, but we wholeheartedly believe that the quality of their items can hardly be matched in Cairo.
Tasteful bargains are often difficult to find in Cairo shops; low prices tend to be reflected in the quality. Advertising a mammoth sale of their entire stock, we headed to Turkish clothing shop, Defacto, in Heliopolis’ Sun City mall for some welcome reductions. Founded in 2003, the brand has become increasingly popular and has begun to branch out to an international market.
The store is large and split almost in half to categorise the men and women’s sections. Bright red sale signs stand above hundreds of well organised racks, clearly stating the price range of the items below. Members of uniformed staff wander around tidying the rails and offer their assistance once in a while, but largely remained inconspicuous, leaving us to browse at leisure.
We were impressed by their selection of basics; plain t-shirts for men and women came in both round and v-necks, in a plethora of sizes and a rainbow of colours (58LE-78LE). Similarly, polo t-shirts were just as colourful, starting at 79LE for women and 148LE for men. A collection of essential strap tops with feminine lace detailing were 79LE whilst casual, long-sleeved tops for men were 99LE. Chequered shirts were present in both sections (129LE-148LE), as were smart-casual blazers (398LE-499LE).
Jeans, jeggings, leggings and chinos were aplenty; the men’s section was particularly well stocked with jeans, chinos (249LE) and smart-casual trousers (179LE-249LE) in just about every colour you could imagine. We also spotted a pair of jolly striped shorts for 249LE along with some other, beach appropriate types.
The women’s section not only boasted denim jeans (179LE+) but a wide selection of leggings and jeggings (79LE-298LE) and numerous pairs of summery, floral print jeans (209LE). High-waisted skirts were also available in plain denim, stripes and bold colours (179LE), with longer length skirts retailing for 218LE.
Unfortunately the store was rife with poor quality novelty t-shirts (59LE-229LE), often sporting cartoon characters or senseless phrases. The blouses (199LE-249LE) were a little more fashionable, with some leopard print ones and some sporting studs in various colours. We also appreciated the presence of denim affect shirts (179LE) in the men's section, before realising that they too were branded with a ruinous logo on the chest.
Faring better, plain cardigans (199LE+) were available for men and women, women’s tracksuit bottoms were 129LE and men’s t-shirts with coloured pockets were reasonably priced at 118LE. There was a small collection of informal dresses (200LE+), as well as a limited maternity range, and a ‘last piece’ rail.
The accessory section was large for both genders, incorporating all the usual suspects; socks (25LE-59LE), smart as well as fashionable belts (79LE-129LE), light, colourful scarves (68LE-99LE), large, simple wallets and purses (63LE-119LE), big, novelty watches (278LE) and a range of glitzy bangles (69LE) and costume jewellery.
Defacto fare well with a range of reasonably priced basics in a large assortment of colours, however, they seem to have missed the mark when it comes to the more trendy, high-street designs. We'd reccommend this place for necessities as well as simple accessories.