All Malls and the Mall of All in Bangkok
Bangkok is the city of malls. And I do not mean the limiting standard conglomeration of shops like Zara or H&M for the average consumer that tend to dominate the market in Germany and Poland. I also do not mean the common Tesco sort of supermarket mall. Bangkok is not limited to the Louis Vuitton, Prada, Armani and other haute couture overpriced bores but to a vivid spectrum of young, fresh and local designers and many many many specialized clothes, shoes, bags and accessory retailers I have never seen before. On top of an amazing variety of clothes, the malls are not mere clones of each other but each one has a very different variety of goodies and something special.
There is the grand Siam Paragon Mall boasting a theatre (very progressive!), a cinema and IMAX, which you can access walking straight in from the skytrain platforms.
Siam Paragon Mall to the left, skytrain to the right.
A bit of an American Florida flair with palm trees and waterfall outside. Upper class customer shops inside.
The Siam Discovery Mall that has an underground Ocean world underneath it, a Madame Tussaud’s wax cabinet and an ever so useful post office.
Messing around with Cristiano Ronaldo and Tom Cruise.
Crazy shoes on shelf and circling on a conveyor belt.
The Siam Center Mall with a variety of young designers.
Original window decoration – ‘We are the wonders’.
Daring bag on head style on sale.
The Central World Mall being the third biggest mall in the world has ice skating facilities on top of everything else.
Central World houses the Japanese iSetan and Zen department stores which put some effort into decoration.
On one floor there is a Superman store, disappointingly just selling regular clothes.
Central World targets middle class clients and furry customers.
In May 2010 Central World was set on fire when the Red Shirts anti-government protesters were forcibly removed after months of demonstrations. The Zen department store only reopened in January 2012 after months of reparation. This picture shows this years (peaceful) Red Shirt demonstrations which we got ourselves into by accident.
The Terminal21 Mall where each floor is designed to resemble another world famous city.
The MBK Mall with everything from clothes to new and used electronics, where we got our regular sized sim card micro-clipped (do not try this at home, if your sim card means anything to you).
‘Mobile Mart’ at MBK Mall.
The BigC Mall with the 60 Baht shop where you can buy everything you never thought you needed before walking into that one way hole.
Tokyo in Bangkok. Let me sidetrack for the sake of fashion. This alley is part of the so called Harajuku (the style and fashion street in Tokyo) with almost-there-original small boutiques and some Japanese brands.
It is actually the best place to get flip flops. Especially for IT specialists.
Was looking a long time until I found mine with the extra bunny ear function.
Also got a Japanese (sounding and looking) outfit at Bangkok’s Harajuku.
Sweet and elegant – the Japanese Lolita candy uniform dress. The only ones I came across in Thailand and unfortunately only decorative elements. No price tags. I checked. And enquired.
There are a dozens of malls that are huge and pleasantly air-conditioned cool off places (I could never imagine myself – the cold weather wuss – praising the benefits of aircon but there you go). Like the Pantip Plaza IT Mall with the best deal on computers and electronic equipment that has got its own article here. Visiting all shopping places is an endless mission – we truly visited loads of malls on our mall hopping tour that took over two weeks. I would bore you to death describing how great (or not great) every single one of them is. That is why I stop right here and share my favourite mall with you now:
The Platinum Fashion Mall.
I am a bit biased representing the female gender foremost. Fashion mall is actually two malls facing each other. Fashion mall is the affordable Asian answer to best selling trends. A middle path to what you see on the runway, in expensive boutiques or mainstream clothing chains with attractive designs patterns being copied quite well at bargain prices.
Fashion mall is also a warehouse of wholesale garments, so that you have to beware of trolley pushing resellers. Fashion mall has the latest colours, designs and hip inventions in a busy market atmosphere, one little square shop squeezed next to the other, clothes being packed up, sorted and unpacked.
With wholesale prices you can go shopping without worrying too much about straining your budget, getting Asia’s most fashionable for the momentum. If you look around a bit you can get nice deals for single leftover (not haute couture) designer labels.
Apart from the normal shoe, clothes, bags delight there are tons of accessories, brooches, bracelets, rings, necklaces, ear rings, hairdos in all shapes and sizes, hair clips, bandanas, crazy Tokyo style headbands with fruits, doves, flowers, feathers and everything you wouldn’t ever imagine on your head.
A lot of fake fashion jewellery.
More cheap accessories.
A tiny inch of all the earrings and rings to match any look.
Fake gold probably generates less harm on earth than real gold :)
Lace and small bride’s veils.
Did they think that shop name through?
What I love about this mall is that I can cherish on my instinctive behaviour of being a hunter and collector – with the evolutionary progress replacing clothes for food. What I do not like about this mall is that you have to be prepared to buy from the rack – no try on allowed, most of the time there wont even be a mirror. So you have to know what suits you pretty good because Asian women wear tiny sizes. I am not a Victoria Beckham size zero but on the slim fit scale, still a lot of stuff was tailored for Asian waists only or alternatively for twelve year old virgin bodies. But that is the devil’s deal for getting fashion before it gets sold in regular shops.