Charlottetown: Absolutely Fabulous and going places

Has there ever, in the history of cute boutiques and salons, been a shop with a more appropriate name than Absolutely Fabulous (218 University Ave., 902-367-3398, abfabpei.ca)? I highly doubt it. Ab Fab (as the locals lovingly refer to it) is one of Charlottetown’s most unique and wonderful clothing hotspots; in 2008 it was even recognized by the Vancouver Sun as one of Canada’s top ten small shops for dresses. For the last several years this boutique has been located on University Avenue, but the little shop with huge aspirations is moving this May to a bigger, better location on 284 Grafton Street (their phone number remains the same).

Ab Fab already has most of the main ingredients I look for in a store. The décor is sunny and bright (the walls are adorned with funky local art and photographs of iconic movie stars), baskets of delicious candy are everywhere and fun indie music plays overhead. Atmosphere aside, the owner Debra MacIntyre and manager Heather Panton are fantastic at sourcing cool clothing lines, which are always changing—the line-up currently includes Seattle-based Suzabelle. The store is known for its super-fun dress collection.

The salon part of the shop offers various spa treatments, including massages, nail treatments, Reiki, waxing and hair care, as well as Canadian beauty products from NBW, AG Hair Cosmetics and my personal favourite, Éminence Organic Skin Care. This line of product is so green and natural that you could technically eat it.

Ab Fab is a community-minded store and the staff has participated in various fashion shows that raised money for local charities. What more could one want? For me, for me I’ve always wished it was bigger and in late May my wish will come true as the team moves into a three-story Edwardian house!