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Wilmington, North Carolina
Cotton Exchange at Wilmington, North Carolina

The Cotton Exchange

321 North Front Street, Wilmington, North Carolina 28401
Category: Shopping & Nightlife
About Us
Before you go

The Cotton Exchange

Experience a cool downtown Wilmington shopping and dining experience at The Cotton Exchange. With its historic character and riverside charm, The Cotton Exchange features an eclectic mix of 20 unique boutiques and shops and four wonderful restaurants along the Cape Fear River. Housed in eight restored Neoclassic structures, once a thriving 19th-century cotton company, The Cotton Exchange is connected by brick walkways, scenic courtyards, and giant heart pine beams, reflecting the style and feel of Wilmington's old working port.
The Cotton Exchange is home of the Wilmington Walk of Fame, which honors local celebrities, such as David Brinkley and Charlie Daniels. Wilmington history is displayed throughout the stunning open-air courtyards and diverse restaurants.



  • Mon.- Sat.: 10am - 5:30pm
  • Sunday: Most Shops Open 12pm - 4pm


Admission Free. Merchants Vary.


  • New River Harmony Barbershop Choral Caroling
  • The Henrietta's Annual Santa Cruise Food Drive


  • Shopping & Dining
  • Walking Tours
  • Carriage Rides
  • Henrietta III Sightseeing Cruises


The Cotton Exchange is downtown Wilmington’s coolest dining experience with four distinctive restaurants: Paddy's Hollow Bar & Grille, The Basics - Gourmet Soul Food, The German Café and The Scoop Ice Cream & Cafe.


A Neoclassic revival style structure rebuilt to house the thriving cotton export trade at the turn-of-the century, The Cotton Exchange along the Cape Fear River is a destination steeped in Wilmington history. The Cotton Exchange’s eight graciously restored buildings, including the Old James Sprunt Cotton Exchange building, connected by brick walkways, open-air courtyards, and enormous heart pine beams house 30 unique shops and restaurants, each a charming reflection of the style and feel of Wilmington's 19th century working port past. In the mid 1970’s, The Cotton Exchange was the first downtown complex in North Carolina to preserve and use existing buildings to bridge the city’s history with its vibrant energy.


Driving Direction to The Cotton Exchange From or Hilton Wilmington Riverside
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