Laad Bazaar is a very old market considered popular for bangles in Hyderabad. It is located on one of the four major thoroughfares emerging from the historic Charminar.
Laad actually means lacquer, which is used to make bangles here that have artificial diamonds studded on them. In more than one-kilometer long shopping strip, there are many shops selling bangles, wedding related items, saris, and cheap jewelry. This market is considered very old, right from the times of the Qutb Shahis and the Nizams. It is located in close proximity to landmarks like Charminar, Makkah Masjid and Chowmahalla Palace.
Laad Bazaar is a major market for bangles, it is popular for bangles, semi-precious stones, pearls, jewellery, Nirmal, Kalamkari paintings, products such as silverware, bidri ware, saris lacquer bangles studded with stones, and hand woven materials of silk, cotton and also velvet, brocade, and gold embroidered fabrics, traditional Khara Dupattas, and perfumes. The narrow lane is filled with bangle shops and old buildings with hanging wooden balconies, where bargaining and haggling is a natural part of shopping at the market. Most of the stores here are furnished with a clean soft cotton mattress covering the entire floor.
Auto rickshaws and cars have now been barred entrance from Charminar end while only the pedestrians, bicycles, motorcycles are allowed to enter. These shops have been here for nearly 200 years and still continue to draw buyers. For those hundreds of people, especially women, who visit Laad Baazar every day, the bangles sold here are something irresistible. Most of the women celebrities and film stars visiting Hyderabad donot wind up their trip without a visit to this place.
Laad Bazaar, formerly called Lord Bazaar, has more than 350 shops selling world-famous lac bangles encrusted with the coloured stones. There are more than 150 workshops here that manufacture a variety of bangles, which the shops here stock and display. It reportedly takes more than three hours for making a lac bangle. Firstly, thin aluminium wires are strung into the rings. Then lac, which is a mixture of Belgium and titanium powder, is mixed along with a base followed by applying colours on the surface. Stones are then encrusted on the lac.
The hard work, which the bangle makers invest, is visible in the form of thousands of pattern of bangles. The major sales window for the bangle sellers is during Ramzan when the sales zoom. The brass and silver framed bangles with pearls studded onto them are also in great demand for weddings. Some of them are even specifically made for guests and there are various kinds of bangles marking different occasions. These bangles also enjoy a great demand in the Middle East whose visitors usually preferring buy them in bulk. At yearly exhibitions in Oman, Hyderabad's bangles are displayed for sale, which are in great demand. Tourists from America and Europe are among those who visit this bazaar and purchase the exquisite multi-coloured bangles!