As well as being a paradise for foodies, Singapore is a prime spot for retail therapy – pampering, clothes and furniture for a start. Planning to take advantage of the Hong Kong-Singapore travel bubble but not sure where to go? We’ve done the legwork and compiled this go-to guide for the best places for shopping in Singapore, from the famous Orchard Road to Marina Bay and some hidden retail gems. Ready, set, shop!
#1 Orchard Road
It’s no surprise that Orchard Road is Singapore’s best-known shopping destination – for tourists and locals alike. Stretching over two kilometres, you’ll find tons of shopping malls lined up along the street, offering everything from high street fashion to luxe labels. Not sure where to start? We’ve narrowed down our seven favourite malls to hit!
Tanglin Mall | 163 Tanglin Road
Popular with the expat community, this all-in-one shopping haven is home to boutiques like Shopping at Tiffany’s (#02-03) and White Ginger (#03-04), all of which stock affordable, fashion-forward clothing in Western size ranges. Mums will love the childrenswear range at Aussie shop Seed Heritage (#02-32/34), which focuses on unique designs made from natural fibres and fabrics. There’s no lack of food options here, too; tuck into international flavours at the Food Hall (#B1-17) or visit Nando’s (#01-14/15) for their famous Peri-Peri chicken. Another must-try is Greek Mediterranean resto Pano Kato (#02-23) for grilled seafood, mezze platters, wines and more!
ION Orchard | 2 Orchard Turn
Conveniently located right beside Orchard MRT station, this gigantic mall is one of the best-known shopping spots in the area. Look forward to a wide array of high street fashion brands like Zara and Dorothy Perkins, alongside local labels like Charles & Keith (#B3-58). Pick up groceries from gourmet supermarket Jasons (#B4-01), then satiate your sweet tooth at popular pastry shop Awfully Chocolate (#B4-50).
Orchard Central | 181 Orchard Road
Home to Uniqlo’s first global flagship store, Orchard Central combines art, fashion and food. Fitness enthusiasts can buy the latest Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) gear from MMA in Style (#06-24), while those who love bold patterns can check out the range from Spanish label Desigual (#01-11/12/13/14).
Paragon Shopping Centre | 290 Orchard Road
Find all your hair and beauty needs at this upscale mall; popular services include brow grooming at Browhaus (#05-10), waxing at Strip (#05-11) and luxe spa treatments at Adeva Spa (#06-22/24). There’s a tight selection of luxury fashion brands too, such as Burberry (#01-32/33) and Coach (#02-13).
Mandarin Gallery | 333A Orchard Road
This snazzy mall hosts many high-end international fashion and beauty brands like Bathing Ape (#02-08/09/10), Clé de Peau Beauté (#01-09) and Michael Kors (#01- 12/13), alongside a two-storey Victoria’s Secret flagship store. Treat yourself to a series of face-renewing treatments at Mendis Aesthetics & Surgery (#04-17), and then satisfy your sweet cravings with dessert from Arteastiq Tea Lounge (#04-14/15).
Far East Plaza | 14 Scotts Road
Bargain shopping is the order of the day here; you’ll find a myriad of custom tailors, small fashion boutiques and shoe shops scattered in this five-storey shopping paradise. Apart from bagging good deals, don’t leave without getting a value-for-money mani or pedi at one of the many nail salons – you’ll easily find shops offering express manis for less than $20.
Orchard Cineleisure | 8 Grange Road
A favourite hang-out amongst youngsters and moviegoers, this hip mall used to boast multiple streetwear names. Sneaker junkies can find their favourite pair at Leftfoot (#02-07), and fashion-forward lads will love Benjamin Barker (#02-07) for their smart and spiffy menswear. Activities-wise, you can sing your heart out at Manekineko Karaoke (#08-01) or have a go at obstacle courses at trampoline park BOUNCE (#09-01).
#2 Beyond Orchard
While most people know Orchard Road and its reputation as a shopping mecca, there are lots of smaller retail enclaves that lie beyond the famous 2.2km stretch of malls and stores. Here are some of those areas that we feel are well worth a browse.
Arguably one of Singapore’s most underrated shopping locales, Bugis has a charming mix of malls and shopping streets, paired with a good dose of heritage. Directly connected to the MRT is Bugis Junction (200 Victoria Street), a vibrant shopping centre with affordable lingerie label 6ixty8ight (#01-112) from Paris, alongside local names like Charles & Keith (01-06/07/08), a popular footwear and accessories brand.
Our favourite spot for fashion deals and bargains is Bugis Street Market. Otherwise known as Bugis Village, this haven boasts hundreds of indie retailers selling tourist souvenirs, clothing, fashion accessories and food. Located across from Bugis Junction, it’s a must-visit if you’re looking for cheap deals. Pro tip: Head to level three, where you’ll find many nail salons offering manicures at super competitive prices.
Ten minutes by foot from Bugis MRT is Kampong Glam, another essential spot. This heritage-rich enclave houses charming boutiques, cafés and bars set in conserved shophouses. Take a stroll along Haji Lane, where you’ll find an eclectic range of fashion boutiques, cafés and unique wall murals. Get your nails done at The Nail Social (42 Haji Lane), and then enjoy a sweet treat at popular pie café Windowsill Pies (17 Haji Lane).
Cluny Court (501 Bukit Timah Road) is conveniently located across from the Botanic Gardens MRT station on the yellow Circle Line. Here you’ll find an eclectic mix of fashion and lifestyle stores, amidst foodie joints to rest your feet after a shopping sesh.
For ultra-chic resortwear, check out Simone Irani (#02-17). This colourful boutique stocks local designers and international labels, including dresses, kaftans, swimwear and accessories. Then, pop by Sugar K Organic Peel Bar (#03-03) for a quick 10-minute sugar-peel facial; or visit one of our favourite salons, The Big Blow (#02-21), to pamper yourself with a relaxing blowout. Hungry folks will enjoy the selection of pastas, salads, pizzas and sandwiches at Da Paolo Gastronomia (#01-01), but if you’re feeling extra healthy, there’s also a wide range of cold-pressed juices at EGA Juice Clinic (#01-04A). Before you leave, don’t forget to check out The Fishwives (#01-05B). It offers fresh and sustainable seafood and meat, sourced directly from farmers in Australia and New Zealand.
There are tons of buzzy bars and eateries in the shophouses around the Chinatown area. Look out in particular for Ann Siang Road, Club Street, Amoy Street, Gemmill Lane, Cross Street, Erskine Road and Telok Ayer Street.
Shopping wise, you’ll find Chinatown Point near the MRT station. This mall houses over 200 shops spread out over six levels! Venture along Pagoda Street and there are plenty more stalls to be discovered, selling everything from silk robes to souvenirs. Feeling peckish? Visit PS. Cafe (45 Ann Siang Road) for hearty grub and stunning cakes. Also located nearby are multi-label jewellery boutique Embrace+ (31 Club Street) and Aussie activewear label Lorna Jane (48 Club Street), known for its trademark LJ Excel fabric.
A former British army barracks, Dempsey Hill is now home to a myriad of upscale dining spots and specialty stores. Head to Woody Antique House (Blk 13, #01-05) for a diverse range of Asian furniture and antiquities sourced from China, Tibet, Mongolia, India, Myanmar, Thailand and Indonesia. Once you’re done with the shopping, spoil yourself with a massage or manicure at Trimmings (75B Loewen Road), a tranquil salon and spa surrounded by lush greenery. Feeling peckish? We recommend Blu Kouzina (10 Dempsey Road) for delicious Greek fare, or you can dine at Candlenut (17A Dempsey Road), an elegant, Michelin-starred Peranakan restaurant.
This heritage-rich enclave is a thriving shopping destination with charming boutiques, cafes and bars housed in conserved shophouses. The roads comprising Kampong Glam, which include North Bridge Road, Haji Lane, Arab Street, Baghdad Street, Bali Lane, Kandahar Street and Bussorah Street, exude a real community vibe. Take a stroll along Haji Lane, where you’ll find Tokyobike’s (38 Haji Lane) first and only Asian flagship store outside of Japan. Pamper yourself with a manicure at The Nail Social (42A Haji Lane), a socially-conscious salon that trains and employs underprivileged women.
Tip: Opening times vary from store to store. It’s best to head down after midday as generally the shops around these parts open later in the day.
The Orchard Road locale may be touted as Singapore’s top shopping district, but did you know that the Marina Bay area is also home to some of the biggest and grandest malls in town? Here are four shopping centres to check out in this part of the island!
Marina Square | 6 Raffles Boulevard
Shop for international brands like British India (#02- 209/210), Levi’s (#02-311) and Massimo Dutti (#02- 129 to 131). Feeling peckish? From Chinese restaurants by Putien (#02-205) and Mouth Restaurant (#02-200) to dessert spots like St. Marc Cafe (#02-105), the range of food options available will leave you spoilt for choice.
Esplanade Mall | 1 Esplanade Drive
Best known for supporting the local arts scene, the Esplanade’s iconic durian-shaped exterior stands out from the surrounding malls. Here, you’ll find a small selection of boutiques, including jewellery shop Alexandria Maison (#02-02), which carries unique creations from local jewellery brands and the Metropolitan Museum of New York. If you’re here to support a friend’s performance, there’s a lovely florist, Meadows & Clouds (#02-05), where you can pick up a bunch of fresh blooms.
Suntec City Mall | 5 Temasek Boulevard
Home to around 300 shops, this lifestyle mall is one of Singapore’s largest. You’ll be treated to a huge selection of shops – restaurants, spas, hair salons, fashion boutiques, electronic stores and more. Looking to doll up your new space? Visit Scanteak (North Wing, #02-443/444/451/452) for Scandinavian-style furniture. Or hit up Bed Bath N’ Table (West Wing, #02-325/331/332) for designer bed linen, towels and home accessories. Then, kick back with an indulgent spa session at Calla Spa (North Wing, #01-501 to 504) – just because!
The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands | 2 Bayfront Avenue
Popular with both locals and tourists alike, this world class mall offers up luxury shopping at its finest. There’s a huge range of luxury brands like Dior (#B1-63, Galleria Level) and Armani Exchange (#B2-15, Canal Level), as well as snazzy restaurants including Adrift by David Myers (Hotel Lobby Tower 2) and CUT by Wolfgang Puck (#B1-71, Galleria Level).
Keen for more ideas as travel ramps up in 2021? See more in our Travel section!