From Saris to Jewelry, Ramadan Sales Abound in Jackson Heights

By Smriti Rao on July 20, 2012 3:14pm 

JACKSON HEIGHTS — With the Muslim holy month of Ramadan starting this week, Jackson Heights resident Amina Nazeer was on a mission.

The 24-year old salon worker zipped in and out of stores in the neighborhood, checking out saris, accessories and shoes to buy as gifts for her family for Eid, the last day of the holy month, which includes prayer, fasting and giving alms to the poor.

“I’m on a budget,” Nazeer said, adding she didn’t want to spend more than $200. “I can’t spend a lot.”

Luckily for Nazeer, retailers in Jackson Heights are dusting off their “discount” signs, offering 20-50 percent off on clothing, electronics, shoes and accessories for the festive month.

Celebrations begin this week — with some sections of the community fasting on July 20 and others starting on the 21st — depending on their sect and cultural background.   

Muslims celebrate the end of Eid with families dressing in new traditional clothes and visiting each other.

It’s also a time for some families to exchange gifts, leading retailers to roll out discounts.

Here are some of the offerings:

India Sari Palace: 37-07 74th St.

Looking for saris to wear or for gifts? India Sari Palace, at 37-07 74th St., has a Ramadan sale from Aug. 1-20, management said.

“We just have three sales each year,” said manager Ratan Shah. “One in March to clear our inventory, another in August during Eid time and the last one in November, for [the Hindu celebration of] Diwali.”

This Ramadan, shoppers can expect to save up to 40 percent on traditional saris, salwar kameez (tunic and pants) and accessories at the store.

“We have a lot of Bangladeshi customers,” said Shah, who said the community was especially fond of saris fashioned from crepe georgette, a matte silk-like fabric. “We expect to see a lot of shoppers.”

Lipi Fashion: 37-11 74th St.

This store on 74th Street offers a wide variety of traditional bangles, bracelets, earrings and clothes and several of the store’s wares have been marked down for the festive season.

Shoppers can expect to snap up a dozen glass and lacquer bangles for $12, marked down from $15 and buy saris and kurtas, the traditional tunic Muslim men wear, at a 20 percent discount.

Perfection Bridal: 37-23 74th St. and JMD Mall 74-22 37 Ave.

These two sari shops also have marked down saris and kurtas, with discounts of up to 30 percent.

“We are expecting to do a lot of sales during Ramadan,” said JMD Mall’s manager Manu Rampal “People can come [anytime] and expect to get discounts.”

Despite the discounts, shoppers on the street said they would still haggle to get the best price for their goods.

“I will get a kurta for this Eid,” said restaurant worker Bilal Kadeer, 25, in Hindi. “But even in a sale, you can bargain."

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