Valentine’s Day is right around the corner, which means it’s time to start dreaming up that perfect gift. This year, go beyond the typical box of chocolates and bouquet of red roses and go for something as unique as your special someone.
From handmade jewelry from Egypt to Argentinian leather embroidered belts, you can’t go wrong with these 20 hard-to-find romantic gifts.
Let’s start with the men in our lives because they are notoriously tough to shop for. Here are 5 gift ideas set to impress.
Espadrille Shoes from Antigua Casa Crespo 🇪🇸
Shoe shopping is tough enough when it’s for you, but buying for someone else is even trickier. That said, you can’t go wrong with a pair of shoes from Madrid’s most famous espadrille shop, which has been open for more than a century and a half and is now run by the fourth generation of the family. All of their shoes are handmade using natural materials only.
Costes Rouge Cologne 🇫🇷
Costes is a sophisticated hotel in Paris that cares about every bit of their guest’s experience, which has seemingly lead them to create this eau de toilette. The scent is described as an effervescent reflection of the parisian lifestyle interpreted in deep crimson and spices, with juniper berries, coriander seeds, rosewood, incense, musk, laurel, white pepper, and lavender. We can smell him already!
Argentinian Embroidered Leather Belt
It’s no secret that Argentina is one of the best counties in the world to snatch up leather goods and because men sure like their belts, we’ve picked out this traditional pattern for our Valentine’s Day collection. The design is replicated in this embroidered belt made by a local studio in Buenos Aires, Argentina. It will definitely spice up his jeans and a t-shirt uniform.
Panama Hat by Homero Ortega
Despite popular belief, Panama hats originally came from Ecuador and are still made of the “toquilla” straw that’s only found in Manabí, on the Ecuadorean coast. Homero Ortega, a more than a century old shop in Cuenca, Ecuador, is widely believed to be the best at making Panama hats. We suggest that you contact the store beforehand to make sure your preferred style is in stock.
Custom Beach Sand Cufflinks by Holly Daniels Christensen 🌴
Cufflinks just got a major makeover thanks to jewelry-maker Holly Daniels Christensen. Each set of cufflinks is handmade from sand gathered from your choice of one of 1,800 picturesque world beaches. The set features silver bezels sealed with jewelry-grade resin.
Organic and utterly modern, they’re a unique sculptural way to add a tangible reminder of a laid-back, sunny day at the beach to an occasion that’s more buttoned-down. Handmade in Massachusetts, the cufflinks come with a card that indicates the source of the sand.
Pure Greek Olive Shower Gel by Korres
Made with locally sourced olive leaf extract, this shower gel is a marvel of Greece’s natural skin care created by Korres, a decades-old brand that started out back in the 1960’s as the country’s first homeopathic pharmacy.
Guys can’t go wrong with these rare, hard-to-find gifts from around the world. Hey, a special gift for a special lady, right?
Earrings by Kloset from Thailand
Kloset is a small jewelry studio in Thailand founded by Mollika Ruangkritya, whose love for crafting beautiful and childish things by hand and turned into a full-blown design career. These earrings are as rooted in nature as everything in her collections, and, if you look closely, you’ll notice minor differences between the two pieces to make the look elegantly effortless and natural.
Snail Mask by Master Lab 🇰🇷
Sounds gross but snail extract is hugely popular in South Korea, and there’s a reason why: it’s believed to stimulate the formation of collagen and elastin. That’s why this sheet mask by Master Lab, one of South Korea’s most reputable brands, is such a hit. It’s sold individually for a very low price of 1000 won (approx. $0.85 at the moment via Grabr). Get a whole package of eight masks for just $7.
Mochila Bag by Colombian Wayuu Tribe
Craving a little color to your all-black winter wardrobe? We’ve got just the thing. Wayuu bags are made as part of the Wayuu women’s culture and traditions; the skills are passed down from generation to generation. Each bag is handmade, weaved and unique. Plus, with each purchase you are helping to sustain the economic growth of the Wayuu tribe. Giving back has never looked so chic!
Made of several beaded strings with stones or metal pieces shaped as objects of nature or belief, the Pharaonic, aka Prince’s, necklaces in Egypt are one of the most recognizable pieces of jewelry.
The best place to track down these necklaces are at the local souks and in jewelry stores throughout the city. Prices vary greatly depending on the materials and venue and very often can be haggled down. Set a max price for your traveler, confirm the materials, and make sure to exchange photos during the purchase.
Ellington Candle by Harlem Candle Co. 🗽
These Harlem-inspired candles feature sparkling notes of bergamot and jazzy cinnamon and a harmonious heart with Lily of the valley, rose and lavender. A swinging base of patchouli, amber and soft musk complete Ellington’s composition. All by Harlem Candle Co. named after the NYC neighborhood of the same name. The candle has a burn time of 20 hours and weighs 113 g (4 oz).
Ise Cotton Obi Dragon Tote by Kyoto Futendou 🇯🇵
Made in Kyoto, this is an Ise cotton tote bag with an understated dragon image printed with the traditional Japanese technique of Kyo Yuzen. Whether using it as your new tote or taking it with you to the office, there’s enough room in there for a small MacBook Air, a handful of toiletries and makeup, your iPhone and whatever else you’re carrying around that day.
Let’s be real; Valentine’s Day is all about sweet treats. Up your candy game this year with a few of these international best-sellers.
Matcha Green Tea Kit Kat from Japan 🇯🇵
Don’t be fooled by it’s familiar packaging; this is not your average Kit Kat. This matcha tea-scented Kit Kat is sold in international airports in Japan is actually noticeably duller in taste than the standard flavor. Green tea has so many health benefits like boosting brain health and lessening your chances of cancer. Of course, we can’t guarantee a Kit Kat has any of those perks but they sure do taste divine.
Parisian Macarons 🇫🇷
Is there any city more romantic than Paris? If you can’t jet set to the City of Love this Valentine’s Day, bring a piece of Paris back to you.
With Grabr, you can order a box of fresh macarons from Paris‘ best shops like Ladurée. Venture into the world of Pierre Hermé for bold and often out-of-this-world delicious varieties, try the Gérard Mulot shops so very popular with locals, or go for a box of Dalloyau macarons, which remain the closest to the crunchy and chewy texture of the original macaron.
Banana Dessert from Tokyo 🇯🇵
We found the dessert you never knew you were missing! These light and fluffy sponge cakes with a banana custard cream filling come in three flavors: almond, chocolate, and caramel-induced banana cream, and with stars, hearts, or stripes pattern on the sponge outer layer. The price on this page is for a 8-pack gift box, but the banana cake is also available in smaller or bigger gift boxes.
Harrods No. 16 Afternoon Ceylon Tea 🇬🇧
The Harrods No. 16 Afternoon Ceylon is a single origin tea from the pristine mountains of Sri Lanka. Light and refreshing, this loose leaf tea will deliver a medium-brown brew with tints of orange and a softly balanced citrus flavor.
Prestat London Gin Truffles 🇬🇧
This box of truffles with Beefeaters is a homage to a London Gin & Lemon Fizz cocktail. A dark chocolate ganache is flavored with gin and infused with lemon and juniper berries before being covered in creamy white chocolate. Hungry yet?
img src=”https://d24yieqptrvzza.cloudfront.net/oldblog/attachments/cd8b2332a90fc3984326ae194ac0cbfb8b0284a3/store/a2049b51ec68ede84457f6e8db1dd5dc7e6ac1adce35a702495ec2bd5365/file.jpeg” ” alt=”Prestat London Gin Truffles” />
For the home
New apartment or not, Valentine’s Day is the perfect excuse to add a little romance to your humble abode.
Vietnamese Silk Lantern
If you’re living with your significant other, it might be time to up your decor game. Vietnamese silk lanterns from Hoi An are available in a range of sizes, colors and shapes. Each one is carefully constructed by an artisan in Vietnam using hand harvested bamboo and pure silk with beautiful colors and patterns. Traditionally hung on the full moon, these lanterns are said to bring good luck to your house.
Saffron de La Mancha Spice 🇪🇸
Saffron is the unique spice used in the Spanish traditional paella and according to El Corte Inglés, Karkom saffron is considered to be the best in the world. With a strong and unique aroma, bright color, and a slightly bitter taste that brings out the best out of rice dishes, your new apartment will start feeling like home.
Russian Samovar Water Boiler 🇷🇺
If there ever was a tea ceremony in Imperial Russia, samovar was the center of it. It’s a traditional type of water boiler used in Iran and, in the 18 and 19th centuries, in Russia, too. To this day, the Tula factory is restoring antique samovars and even making electric samovars that you can plug into the wall.
Made of brass and traditionally with a small furnace inside to be filled with wood, the samovar can also be the center of your family dinner.