Site can help you find unique, local, last-minute gifts

CENTER CITY - Dec. 20, 2010

These are just some of the last-minute gift ideas you can find and save money on using

You don't actually buy gifts on Yelp Philadelphia. But the site can help you find unique presents, while you support local merchants and get special deals


Felicia D'Ambrosio of explains, "You can search site any way that you choose, by keyword, you can look in your neighborhood, you check out what's hot on Yelp, which is things that are popular that other people are looking at. So whoever you have in mind that you need that gift for, we want to help you find a local business that has unique and special items, instead of going right to the big box."

Like the things you'll find at Verde,a store that sells gifts, flowers and artisan chocolates.

The store's owner uses Yelp to offer special deals to shoppers.

"On our site, business owners can add announcements, special offers, or promotions," D'Ambrosio says. "So you'll find things like discounts that are unique when you mention Yelp or special sales that they're having."

And you can use the site to find plenty of other unusual last-minute gifts for less than $50.

At Fante's kitchenware store in South Philadelphia, you can find a pink Santoku knife for $35, tongs for $15 and and Olivewood spoon for $9 -- perfect for a friend who loves to cook.

At Open House, you can choose an Italian watch for $40, a real hour-long hour glass for $30, or a grow-your-own holiday paperwhites kit for $48.

Or you can bring someone a box of Market Day Canele -- pastries originally made by nuns in Bordeaux, France -- for $30.

D'Ambrosio says local deals like these are perfect for this year's holiday shopping trends.

"I think people are spending less than they used to and looking for something unique and special," she says.

You don't need to sign up to search Yelp for deals, but you do need to create a profile if you want to comment on businesses or receive emails. To check out the site, click here.

You can also look at the site's 2010 Yelpiest Gift Guide Ever for Philadelphia, by clicking here.

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