Shopping Needs

Shopping Malls

Stanford Shopping Center

This mall is the closest but is also the priciest.

Major Stores: Nordstrom’s, Bloomingdales, Macy’s (and Macy’s Mens), Nieman Marcus

Other Stores of Interest: Crate & Barrel, Gap, Apple Store, Nike Women, Abercrombie, Express, JCrew

Directions: Right next to the hospital/medical school. Can take the Marguerite A Line shuttle. On the corner of El Camino and Quarry Rd and El Camino and Sand Hill Rd.

Hillsdale Shopping Center

This shopping center is smaller than the Stanford Shopping Center with a larger selection of more moderately priced stores. It is located north of campus off Hwy 101 at Hillsdale Blvd and El Camino.

Valley Fair Shopping Center

It is twice the size of Stanford Shopping Center with a wide range of stores from high-end to regular stores.  It is located south of campus in San Jose.

San Antonio Shopping Center

This place is a “one-stop shopping” kind of place – ideal for setting up house.

Stores: Wal-Mart, Target, Safeway, Trader Joe’s, The Milk Pail, Ross, and Kohl’s.

Directions: From any campus exit on El Camino, turn right on El Camino and go 3-4 miles (south). For the best entrance to Wal-Mart and Target, make a left on Showers Dr. (the first street/traffic light past San Antonio and Whole Foods on the right hand corner). Target will be on your right and Wal-Mart (and all other stores) will be on your left.  Safeway is on California St. (Make a left at the first traffic light on Showers Dr. onto California St.).

Bed Linens and Housewares

Bed, Bath, & Beyond

There are two Bed, Bath, & Beyond locations close by.  The one in Mountain View is closest for those living in EV or Rains.  If you live on the west side of campus, the Redwood City one is closer.

Mountain View

Hours: Open daily from 9 am - 9 pm

Directions: Go south on El Camino for 2 miles, Turn left onto W Charleston Rd (at a major traffic light, Ford and Volvo car dealerships on the right corner).  Go for about 2 miles and Bed, Bath, & Beyond will be in a shopping center on the left before Hwy 101

Redwood City

Hours: Mon – Sat 9 am – 9pm, Sun 9 am – 7 pm

Directions: Go north on El Camino for 4 miles. Store will be on your left just past the underpass.


Great for picking up extra furniture like bookcases, desks, chairs, etc. Essentially, you have to assemble everything yourself.

Store Hours: Open Daily 10 am - 9 pm

Directions: From campus take University Avenue (Palm Drive turns into University after you cross over El Camino) all the way through Palo Alto (about 2 miles) and cross over Hwy 101.  Turn right on Donohoe Street and continue on E. Bayshore Rd. IKEA will be on your right.

Note: Best Buy and Office Depot are across the street in the Ravenswood Shopping Center.

Grocery Stores


This is the cheapest grocery store and there are lots of locations.  Listed below is the closest one. However, if you live in Sharon Green, Seven Oaks, or on-campus in Lyman, there is a closer Safeway on Sharon Park Drive.  Be sure to get a Safeway card at customer service desk or when checking out to receive the discount/sale prices.

Hours: Open 24 hrs

Directions: Go north on El Camino (less than 1 mile past Stanford Shopping Center), Safeway will be on left. To enter, turn left on Middle Ave (at a traffic light with Shell gas station on the left corner).

Note: There is a Staples across the street if you need office supplies.

Trader Joe’s

Mixed goods store with primarily dried goods and really good frozen foods. Their produce is pretty hit or miss. It is also a good place for cheap wine.  Locations in Town & Country (very close to downtown Palo Alto), San Antonio Shopping Center, and Menlo Park.

The Milk Pail

A European-style open-air market with great (and cheap!) produce, cheeses, breads, etc. (A must try!) It is located across the street from Safeway in the San Antonio Shopping Center on California Street.

Whole Foods

This is a medium-to-pricey organic grocery store located in downtown Palo Alto.  They have lots of great fresh produce, breads, and meats. They also have a pretty thorough beer and wine selection.

Hours: Open daily from 8 am to 10 pm

Directions: From campus, take University Ave to Emerson St. (the second street after the underpass) and turn right.  Whole Foods is at the end of the third block, at the corner of Emerson and Homer.

Sigona’s Farmers Market

This is a small market with great fresh produce and a great selection of dried fruits and nuts located in the Street Market Area of the Stanford Shopping Center (next to Schaub’s Meat, Fish, & Poultry). Hours: Mon-Sat 9 am - 7:30 pm, Sun 9 am - 6:30 pm


This is a wholesale retailer similar to Sam’s Club.  A membership is required (can split between two people) and items are primarily sold in bulk.  I don’t think you would use Costco on a frequent basis, but it would definitely be good if you were planning to throw a big party or something.  You can also purchase items like beds, desks, TVs, etc. here.

Hours: Mon-Fri 11 am - 8:30 pm, Sat 9:30 am – 6 pm, Sun 10 am - 6pm

Directions: Take El Camino south to Rengstorff (about 4 miles).  Make a left on Rengstorff, and Costco will be in a shopping center on the left immediately before Hwy 101.


Best Buy

Hours: Mon-Sat 10 am - 9 pm, Sun 11 am -7 pm

Directions: Go south on El Camino for 2 miles, Turn left onto W Charleston Rd (at a major traffic light, Ford and Volvo car dealerships on the right corner).  Go for about 2 miles and Best Buy will be in a shopping center on the left before Hwy 101.

Office Supplies


Hours: Mon - Fri 7 am-9 pm, Sat 9 am-7 pm, Sun 10 am-6 pm

Directions: Go north on El Camino for about 1 mile.  Staples will be on your right, across from the Safeway.