Monday, 14 June 2010

Top five forgotten malls of Singapore


Whilst it may appear that you can barely walk two block in Singapore's central shopping district without stumbling across another building site earmarked for yet another monstrous mall, we should take care to remember that there is respite from the cookie cutter luxury retail outlets... The forgotten malls of Singapore, I salute you: most were built in the late 1970s and 1980s so have withstood 20-30 years of hardcore mish-mash retail and 'look look, see see' shoppers.

1. People's Park Complex: Vintage memorabilia, DIY electronics, goldsmiths, arguably the most popular bak kua store on the island, copy watches, and a small television showing disturbing footage of someone having a blepharoplasty* (*CAUTION: not for the faint-hearted). This mall's got it all. Snack stop: Head for the small stalls outside selling edible duck parts (there are more than you initially think, trust me). Turn right and search for the fried goods stall which sells by far the best hei-piah (prawn cake) in Singapore: light, yet glutinous dough, topped with a prawn and deep-fried to perfection. Wolf it down and give yourself a well-deserved pat on the back.

2. Peninsula Plaza: Guitars, fancy dress, vintage clothes, opticians, and specialist camera stores. This is a mecca for music lovers, photographers and those who like to dress a little differently. Snack stop: It has to be Sotong Ball OnStik from Old Chang Kee.

3. Golden Mile Complex: Were you wondering where all the Thai people hang out in Singapore? Look no further. More Thai shops, clubs, barbers, travel agents and eateries than you can shake a lemongrass stick at, the mall dubbed 'Little Thailand' has it all, including an enormous supermarket. Snack stop: Clear Tom Yam soup from Diandin Leluk Thai Restaurant. (Okay, not really a snack, per se, but if you want your spicy socks blown off, don't miss this gem.)

4. Bras Basah Complex: If it's obscure books and magazines, or you're about to get crafty, this is your hang out. Art Friend is the place you need to head if you're planning to paint yourself blue, make yourself something out of felt and all other obscure creative activities. The Complex is also home to my favourite jeweller that would never make it big in the UK: Fook Hing (see above). Snack stop: Grab a coffee amongst the bookshelves at Popular's cafe or go retro and order an ice cream float at Jack's Place. Time to watch the world go by and catch up on a little reading.

5. The Peace Centre: The entire ground floor of this place is dedicated to all things 'print'. If you need to waste half a rainforest printing out your memoirs, head here and compare the prices. Be warned though, the fancy dress shop which used to exist here has now morphed into a dodgy looking 'university' - one of those ones offering 'degrees' in Needlework & Stitching, with a major in English for Beginners. Snack stop: There is a Turkish kebab place next to the main exit, which always seems fairly popular. It even has the enticing 'elephant's leg'. Check your cholesterol levels before ordering.

Finally, a special mention for most short-sighted name for a mall - Singapore Shopping Centre. Did they really think that they would be the only one?

Happy shopping & snacking!

5 comments:

davo said...

ah haaa - see the cracking question on the site for blepharoplasty..

Kay Vasey said...

"is it pain during the operation?" nice one.

志名 said...

感謝不吝分享您的心得.................................................................

怡文蔡 said...

Quality is better than quantity.....................................................................

DonA_Binett彥安 said...

成熟,就是有能力適應生活中的模糊。.................................................................