Costa Rica does not have a huge culture of antiques and the people do not ascribe a high monetary value to old items. This kind of rarity in antiquing as a hobby makes the search for rare antiques all the more intriguing and makes a store like Antigüedades Imperio really stand out. Of course, the small size of the antique market can be a boon rather than a bummer, as it often means that antiques can be bought at a fraction of what they cost abroad. The small selection often means there is less room for junk and a higher proportion of collectibles; there is nothing about this that is unappealing!
Antigüedades Imperio is one of just five antique shops in the country and there are no markets dedicated to the selling and collecting of antiques. Due to the small scale of this kind of past time in Costa Rica, the goods found in Antigüedades Imperio really run the gambit across all genres, as the overall market is not large or diverse enough to warrant any kind of specializing. The owner of the store imports some furniture from Europe and the United States, and most of his wares were made between 1900 and 1950.
As with all antiques, the nuggets of history found behind the goods for sale in Antigüedades Imperio are fascinating for both collectors and casual shoppers. Most of the locally available furniture is from the early 20th century because when the nation was making a lot of money from coffee exports in the late 1800s, many upper-class families sent their children to study in Europe. Those children brought back furniture and other household items. Some antiques also came over with people who fled to Costa Rica from Europe before World War II.
Antigüedades Imperio is well worth a visit. Collectors are guaranteed to find true gems here and tourists will find many worthy souvenirs that capture the true spirit and history of this country.