Information below courtesy of the American Spouses of Brunssum Travel Information Guide
Take A 46 towards
About 2 miles form the
Stay on A4 to Gorlitz/Bautzen to the border. The border is easy to get through. Once across the border, follow the signs to 4
If you are going into
Going into Boleslawiec: go straight through the traffic circle and at the light go left. Continue until you see the Supersam on your left. Go left at the light, then right at the next intersection and then left and you will see the Shang-hi Hotel. The Hotel is about 3 blocks down the road. If staying at Hotel Piast, stay on the Supersam road and follow this road to the Piast.
For money exchange, directly across the street from the Piast is a money exchange place.
Brands of Pottery:
WISA (Visa)- good stuff, produces grape pattern
Artistica- big factory, where buses stop, this brand recommended
Zkloty- in states this is sold at TJMaxx and Cracker Barrel
WR- this is a very flower pottery
Christoff- Sells in stores, very flowery
The ornament shop is before the first traffic circle on your left (heading into town) and a turquoise building on your right as well. You have to go up some stairs on the outside. There are good stores after you pass through the traffic circle, a little higher in price though.
Artistica factory: At the first traffic circle in Boleslawiec, take the second exit towards Zielona Gora. Go to the next traffic circle towards Zielona Gora (third exit). The shop is on the left (next to Cer-Far). Park inside the blue fence. This store has a large selection of Unikat hand painted pieces and 1st-5th quality traditional and contemporary painted pieces. Prices are very good. (The last time I went to this store, it seemed like they were changing … not as much product for the public … they SEEM to be catering more to dealers than individuals) They do not take $$ or € here. Must pay with credit card or Zloty.
Ceramica/Keramik/Cer-Far (“Painted Fence Shop”) this store is next to Artistica. It is a store that sells Artistica and WR. You can get some things here and prices are good, selection good, and great for baskets. Store has peacock pattern fence and US Flag on white building. Park behind the building. They do not take credit cards at this store. Across from the Artistica is a store that has great selection of baskets as well.
Street: ul. Kosciuszki 17
Hours: Mon-Fri 0800-1800, Saturday 0700-1500
In town Centrum down road from Piast on the right is a store with good crystal and toys.
There is a store in the Centrum that I was told was called the Art Glass Studio. I finally found the store (and there are signs for Art Glass Studio pointing a different direction … don’t follow these for this store) with a Polish name that I cannot remember. This store is on the downtown square. Turn right at the corner bookstore (if you are in the square, looking at the church, the bookstore is on your left on a corner) and his shop is on the left side of the street. He’ll have Tiffany style lamps in the window. The owners name is Peter and the phone number of the store is 0048-75-732-6579. He speaks excellent English. This store has beautiful stained glass. Peter will custom-make Tiffany style lamps, panels for your home and small pieces. I took the pillow sham from our bed (hand made double wedding ring quilt in purple and ivory) and he made a Tiffany lamp with the double wedding ring pattern on it. I got to pick out the shades of glass that I wanted him to use. I received a beautiful lamp at a great price. The only downside is you have to go back in 2 months to pick it up (he’ll ship but it’s very expensive to ship it) but not everyone would consider that a downside.
There are MANY, MANY stores that sell pottery. They all seem to offer something a little different. I suggest stopping at every one of them (if you have time).
When you first see the pottery know you’ll be overwhelmed. Don’t stress. Don’t feel you have to get all your pottery at once. Shop around and keep a notebook of where you were and what you liked and prices, then you can take time to decide later what you want to get. Stores accept US, €, Zlotys and some accept credit cards (most do now). You get the best exchange rate from your VISA or ATM. Exchange rate is on average 4:1
Big Bites: on corner as you go into Piast. They have pizza, pierogies, and good soup.
Elric: they have potato puffs, pierogies (across the street from the 4 sisters shops)
Shang-hi has a restaurant inside the hotel. You get free breakfast if you are staying there and you can order pierogies and pizza at the front desk if you want dinner there.
If you’re driving in town and kids try to watch car or wash windows it is ok to tell them no. They might do it anyway and expect money. You can tip them with food or small amount of money but no more than 50 cents, as that is a lot of money to them.
Watch your van at the edge of town or consider using The Club to protect it. Wear a fanny pack. We’ve heard that people will pull you out of your car to take it as well so keep doors locked/windows up etc., but I have not seen anything like that. Just be cautious. Keep your ID safe.
Ask about the quality ratings of each “brand” of pottery as quality ratings vary from factory to factory. Gat. 1 is usually first quality (or export quality), Gat. 2 is a second, the quality goes down as the number goes up. A second is normally a flaw in the paint, but it varies with each factory. If you plan on baking or using a piece regularly, buy only Gat. 1 or 2. Inspect pieces very carefully. Do not buy Gat. 4s if you plan on using for oven, microwave or dishwasher. If you see a red sticker, beware, don’t purchase.
Chess sets and boxes: at center across from Artistica. Great gifts and inexpensive
Borowski- glass factory very modern styles and very nice products, store/factory is outside of town.
Places to stay:
Elite 0048 075 734 7401
Shang-hi (can not find information)
Protea – I can’t find the phone number but their email is: firstname.lastname@example.org. This is a great place to stay. They charged about €15 per night per person. They have a small gift shop in the hotel and their food is VERY cheap! Includes free breakfast.
Dorotea Jeal- very nice lady and will be your guide for about €5 per hour. She will take you to stores. She knows the really out of the way stores and can give you a bit of history about the area as you shop. She is definitely worth the money (especially your first time to