There are two major home improvement stores in Bolivia where you can purchase many household items including imported goods, office furniture, home furnishings, tableware, bedding, small appliances, large appliances such as refrigerators and stoves, gardening tools, electronics such as TVs, hardware, lighting and plumbing fixtures, schools supplies, imported toys, camping gear, interior decorating, and more. You may not find construction items at these stores, such as lumber, bricks, and other large-scales products, but their inventory is fairly extensive. Both have websites.
America Home Center
This store in Santa Cruz used to import most of its items from the United States, although lately much of its inventory is not of American origin.
This store has four branches, also in Santa Cruz. This store was founded by a family of German origin and often imports items from Europe.
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More types of home improvement stores
While not exactly home improvement stores in the “American” sense of the word, there are dozens and dozens of hardware stores called “ferreterías” all over Bolivia's major cities. Ferreterías are literally “tool shops” and here you can find vast arrays of anything you might need for electricity and plumbing, gardening and tools, painting and more.
There are also many “mueblerías” which are furniture stores. Most of them also offer additional products for home décor and interior design.
If you need lumber Santa Cruz is Bolivia’s lumber capital and there are many lumber companies, all with several branches all over the city. These are called "madereras".
You’ll find several companies that manufacture or import ceramic, granite, porcelain and marble tile all have their own outlets, and most also sell complementary products (plumbing, decor) for your kitchen and bath.
Lighting can be purchased at one of several shops that specialize in lamps and light fixtures.
Doors and windows are usually purchased specifically from door and window carpenters, who might also make picture frames and other pieces of furniture. They are called "carpinterías".
There are stores that specialize in picture framing called “marqueterías” which comes from the word “marco” which means frame in Spanish.
You’ll find all kinds of glass window and door panes at “vidrierías” which are glass cutters, but most vidrierías also do picture framing.
You’ll find slate, granite and other natural rock is sold at “rock yards” sort of like lumber is sold at lumber yards. You go to the rock yard and choose the slabs of rock you want. You then have them cut it for you into the sizes you need.
Bricks and ceramic roofing tile are sold at brick and roofing tile factories, usually imported from elsewhere in the country or outside the city and sold in smaller quantities in city stores, or you can (sometimes) buy them right off a truck on the 4th ring near Avenida Alemania.
There are several huge paint stores with all kinds of varieties of paints, including interior and outdoor paints, and even oil, tempera, and fabric paints for kids and crafters. One even offers painting classes. These are called "tiendas de pintura".
Other stores specialize only in "electrodomésticos" which are kitchen and home appliances such as refrigerators, freezers, microwaves, stoves and ovens, washers, water heaters, and the like. They are often called "casas" (houses).
As you can see, you won’t find everything in one place. You will have to do some shopping around. But isn’t that more fun anyway?