(credit: PORNCHAI KITTIWONGSAKUL/AFP/Getty Images)
There’s a theme for everyone and a gift basket just waiting to be made up and delivered by post or by hand for the holidays. From lightweight to heavyweight, these South Bay specialist shops are the places to go to create a thoughtful gift basket around a loved one’s passion.
Schurra’s Fine Confections
840 The Alameda
San Jose, CA 95126
Selling more than a century’s worth of chocolate means Schurra’s doing something right! San Jose’s own downtown sweet shoppe since 1912 has chocolate baskets made up for the holidays from $25 to $125. The biggest includes a dazzling array: peppermint bark, pecan log, white wine and truffle tasting kit; gift boxes of fudge, assorted chocolates and buttermint wafers; gift bags of dark chocolate grape cluster, infused caramel, English toffee, caramel corn and peanut brittle; and a molded figurine. Try not to eat any on the way home.
Lavande Nail Spa
355 Santana Row, Suite 1020
San Jose, CA 95128
Indulge a deserving someone by making up a little gift basket of goodies from Lavande Nail Spa. Pop in a gift certificate for her choice of a massage, facial, waxing or nail treatment. Tuck the envelope between a couple of warm winter shades or lavender hues of her favorite brand of nail polish, a top coat or cuticle cream and you’re done without tipping the scales. Certificates are good in four other Bay Area Lavande nail spa locations in Palo Alto, Lafayette, Mill Valley and in San Francisco.
1778 Winchester Blvd.
Campbell, CA 95008
Call ahead or pop into the family-owned shop for a thoughtful hand in putting together a floral gift basket arrangement for any occasion: your dinner hostess’ table, a get well wish to brighten up a hospital stay, a bridal shower or a new baby arrival. Bestsellers in a basket include live green plants, color themes such as violets and purple ribbons, flower and fruit combinations or even a celebratory birthday balloon tied to a basket handle. As a member of TeleFlora, delivery can be arranged for anywhere.
Lisa’s Tea Treasures
1875 S. Bascom Ave., Suite 165
Campbell, CA 95008
At the rear of the Pruneyard Shopping Center, step into another world of linen-clothed tables and sweetheart chairs. The quaint little tea room has a gift shop selling the house teas, china, imported porcelain cups, saucers and tea pot sets, serving platters, tea cozies, strainers, books, jams and assorted knick knacks. Bring along a little basket or fill one at home with tea-themed treasures that even a proper Brit would appreciate. There’s free gift wrapping for most purchases.
The Wine Club
1200 Coleman Ave.
Santa Clara, CA 95050
Stop into the Santa Clara outpost of the San Francisco store which is not really a club at all, but a wine and spirit merchant of repute. Join a Friday evening happy hour or a Saturday afternoon tasting to chat with the super knowledgeable staff and choose your selections for a gift. With wines from 11 countries and prices that are tough to beat, you can save enough to buy a basket to create a gift hamper of your own. Shipping is no problem.
Laurie Jo Miller Farr loves walkable cities. A tourism industry professional and transplanted New Yorker by way of half-a-lifetime in London, she’s writing about the best of the bay and beyond for Yahoo, USA Today, eHow, and on Examiner.com.