A shopping experience in Singapore—yes, experience is the right word!—is not to be missed, even if you can only spare a stopover en route to (or from) your final destination. Don’t worry if you don’t consider yourself a hip dresser—it’s easy to locate your favorite brands and discover new, local labels in any of the many malls and other shopping centers around the island. Walk away in confidence knowing fashionable Singapore has upgraded your style.
If your vacation plans didn’t originally include Singapore, consider making a stopover to or from your intended destination for a perfect addition to your initial plan. This is a simple way of creating two vacations out of one!
To make the most of a limited stay in this island nation, use this guide to plan out your shopping excursion so you don’t miss any of the top shops that place Singapore among the best shopping destinations in the world.
Treat Yourself to Singapore’s Shopping Scene
Singaporeans are at the forefront when it comes to dressing themselves and their family. Chic shops and high-end malls are easily within reach, so it’s no wonder that residents are fashion-forward.
The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands
Marina Bay Sands is the most iconic building on the Singapore skyline, known for its long rooftop infinity pool that spans across three elegant, glass-walled towers. This hotel is the epitome of luxury and class in Singapore, and so it’s fitting that The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands reflect both the hotel’s atmosphere and the locals’ taste in haute fashion. Not surprisingly, the Shoppes is also family-friendly, offering more than 14 kids’ clothing brands and six comfortable family rooms designed for relaxation and attending to children’s needs.
Orchard Road is home to iconic malls. Start your shopping journey at TANG, Singapore’s oldest department store, designed to pay homage to the Forbidden City. It houses well-known brands and unique souvenirs.
The visually stunning ION Orchard Mall bills itself as Singapore’s first multi-sensory shopping experience. It boasts an exhibition of modern and contemporary art and design that offers free admission. At the top of the building, visitors can enjoy panoramic views at ION Sky, as well as have an opportunity to learn about Singapore’s history through an immersive multimedia experience designed by Singaporean singer-songwriter Dick Lee.
Design Orchard combines a retail space with talent cultivation. It plays host to an incubation workspace, where local Singaporean talent takes the spotlight. Whether you’re a shopper or design aficionado, you can get access to authentic Singapore brands such as The Missing Piece and GINLEE.
Off The Beaten Track
Bugis Street Market
This enormous market is one of the best places on the island for bargain-hunters. Trinkets are sold for as low as S$1 and sunglasses for S$5. Hundreds of shop stalls are open rain or shine to welcome window shoppers and those looking to buy inexpensive clothes, electronics, housewares and souvenirs.
Known as a local hipster haven, Haji Lane plays host to a brightly painted mix of independent boutiques, bars and cafes. Modern murals adorn the exterior of charming shops, which is an Instagram-worthy draw in itself.
A stop in Singapore’s Little India is only complete with a visit to Mustafa Centre. Open 24 hours, this interesting departmental store never sleeps and is famed for selling everything from earrings to exotic spices to electronic gadgets.
Jewel Changi Airport
This exotic blend of nature and modern architecture inside Jewel Changi Airport rises 10 stories high and boasts stores that label lovers will adore. Jewel Changi Airport carries scores of restaurants and shops, such as Southeast Asia’s largest Nike store as well as popular local brands like In Good Company and Yacht 21. Jewel Changi Airport is also a great place for buying quality souvenirs and gifts. Interesting shops to check out are GIFT by Changi Airport and Taste Singapore.
What’s more, shoppers can take a walk in the Forest Valley which offers a view of lush greenery with one of the largest collections of plants indoor.
This is by no means an exhaustive list of all the wonderful shopping experiences to be had around Singapore. But when you’re limited on time during a stopover, the top destinations are a must. After all, they are popular for a reason. Plus, experiencing just a taste of Singapore’s fashion and retail scene will give you all the more reason to come back and explore even further next time.