For book lovers, there’s nothing better than soaking up some literary goodness in a bookstore equipped with thousands of books to choose from. Aside from libraries, bookshops are a great place to let your imagination take flight. Here are some beautiful and interesting bookstores around the world:
Shakespeare and Company, Paris
Although small, this bookshop located across from the famous Notre Dame has been described as a book lover’s dream so if you’re one yourself, this should be in your bucket list if you visit Paris. The original shop doubled as a library, publisher and boarding house for aspiring writers by Sylvia Beach but it closed and was reopened by George Whitman during World War II. Nowadays it is said to attract many tourists across the world so it could get cramped and chaotic.
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In 10 Minutes 38 seconds, Leila spends the moments after her death reflecting on the life she's lived and those who'll miss her. Join us tomorrow evening for 60 minutes 10 seconds (give or take!) with the incomparable Elif Shafak, author of this beautiful novel. #elifshafak #shakespeareandcompany #shakespeareandco #paris
Cafebreria El Pendulo, Spain
This bookstore is a combination of a cafeteria and a bookstore so you can dive your nose in a book and sip some coffee while at it. The company has several branches all within Mexico City and each have the same characteristics – like an open and bright architecture, wooden floors, and plants that protrude from bookshelves too.
(Pic taken from its website)
Livraria Lello, Portugal
The architecture of this bookshop is so stunning, it is rumoured to have inspired J.K Rowling’s depictions of Harry Potter’s Hogwarts. Apparently, the store became a prominent hangout for famed writers and avid readers. It was also said that Rowling was a loyal customer herself. What makes the store even more beautiful is that the building has a stained-glass skylight that illuminates the shop and wood-carved handrails.
Books Actually, Singapore
This independent bookstore specializes in fiction and literature. Opened in 2005, it rose to popularity quickly, marking itself as a beautiful place to visit in the country, located in the beautiful Tiong Bahru area. Inside the store, you’ll find the store full of book and nooks to explore.
BookXcess Sunsuria Forum, Malaysia
BookXcess has multiple outlets in Malaysia, but this particular one that recently opened its doors is unlike any other bookstores in the country. This bookstore brings the country’s first-ever tunnel concept bookstore. On the outside, visitors will find an eye-catching and towering circular bookshelf at the entrance. They will find a staircase that will lead them down to a whole new world underground, precisely a bookstore that spans over 16,000 square feet with half a million books available to be explored. Book lovers can expect a variety of books from art and design to literature, fiction, non-fiction, young adult, children’s books and many more hidden gems.
The bookstore also features a comfortable workstation and reading spaces for customers to browse the sample books available. Parents of young children will also love the children’s section where it allows kids to play in the mini-maze and indulge in its extensive collection of children’s books. There are also Magical Books available, which are books incorporated with Augmented Reality (AR). It uses cutting-edge technology to revolutionise reading for the next generation that creates an immersive, interactive and reading experience.
(Cover photo: Livraria Lello / Instagram)