Older thread, but as a lifelong resident I figured I could throw in my two cents.
Yes, the best thing about Sacramento is it's proximity to other cities. Napa is 75 minutes away, SF less than two hours. They've been trying to revitalize downtown for years, but it's never really taken off, though there are some stately homes nearby and a gaggle of good restaurants.
As for shopping, the high-end centers around the Pavillions shopping center on Fair Oaks Blvd. They have the aforementioned Julius, which stocks Zegna, Etro, Dolce & Gabbana, a smidge of Cucinelli, with Armani Collezioni (but no Emporio or Giorgio) the cheapest line they carry. The Ralph Lauren store is owned by the same family as Julius and carries the full line of Polo/Black Label/ Purple Label. Sales for both occur bi-annually and first cut is 40% (largest discount I've seen is 70%). There's also a shoe store that sells Cole Haan along with the more obscure Italian brands (Mezlan, Baldinini).
Arden Fair Mall is decent; the Nordstrom probably has the best shoe selection in the city, with fashion brands like Prada, Gucci, and Ferragamo alongside the stodgier labels like Mephisto. Clothing selection is typical Nordstrom fare, with Facconable, Canali, and the like. "Younger" sportswear has a mall aesthetic and tops out at the Lacoste/Burberry level. AF also has Gap and J. Crew, along with Armani Exchange and Lucky Brand if you like that sort of thing.
The Roseville Galleria is newer and currently expanding, but the mall reeks of nouveau riche desperation and I personally avoid the place like the plague. The only reason to go there would be the Vuitton (which carries men's shoes) and maybe the Burberry when it opens in the fall.