Singapore might be small in size, but there are so many places that you could visit there. It’s not exaggerating when I say there’s a little of everything from other part of the world inside Singapore when it comes to shopping and I will tell you why.
Just like every other country, Singapore also have China Town. And other than the Scandinavian style area inside it, they look pretty much the same like China Town in other part of the world. Small crowded street, full of stalls and small stores selling every things you can imagine.
The China Town there is like the combination of emperan Blok M and Glodok/Mangga Dua. You can find cheap t-shirts for less than SGD 5, scarves that are sold for SGD 10 for four pieces, SGD 3 watches etc. But there are also some stalls that sell unique and nice stuff. I saw one small stall, hidden in the corner of the street, that sells hand made table clock shaped like milk cartons, chips packaging, etc for only SGD 15. Unfortunately, the stall was so small and there were so many people there, I couldn’t take decent pictures.
You can also find traditional Chinese drugstores that have complete range of medication for all your health problem. I remembered my grandfather used to take me to similar shops in Passer Baroe to get some funny looking and smelly pills that he claimed were the best medicine.
When I went there, it was few days before the Chinese New Year so the decoration was full of red ornaments and Chinese lantern.
Then my friend guided me to another part of the street, in a big old building, and she said she had a surprise place for me to visit. I followed her to… Swanston.
I understand that a lot of us visit Singapore drugstore to find some inexpensive cosmetics/beauty products, especially those that are not available in Indonesia. But I have never heard of Swanston before. At first, it just look like another drugstore to me, only this one has aisle so small you have to hold your purse carefully so you wouldn’t sweep all the products down with it. But turned out.. everything is cheaper than any other store!! Isn’t it sweet?
The price is SGD 0,5 – 4 less than the other. And considering it’s a drugstore that sells relatively inexpensive items, the amount are quite a lot. Especially when, you know, you bought (ahem) quite a lot of stuff
The Arab and Melayu Part
When I went to that part of the city, my mission was to go to Pisang Street to find the boutique that sells local designer clothes. Well, blame it to my bad sight and the small map, I arrived at…. Pinang Street! *blush*
It took me around 20 minutes before I realized that, actually :p. But the bright side is that I have more story to tell you guys
Along the Pinang Street, you can find stores selling stuff from Middle East, Malaysia and even Indonesia. All the stores look old and dark, even though I went there when the sun shined so brightly. It might appear uninteresting, but when you entered the store, you’ll find interesting stuff. One store I entered sell pretty glass bottles that look like small genie lamp usually used by the Arabian to keep their perfume oil. I don’t know how, though, because the bottle cap is loose so I guess the perfume might vaporized. But they are so pretty!
There are also some stores that sell perfume oil from Pakistan. They all have dramatic names like ‘Midnight Angel’, ‘Dessert Princess’, ‘Charming Flower’ and sort of. The smells are a bit too strong for my taste, but for those perfume hard core, maybe you should try them.
I also found one store that sells Indonesian batik for around SGD8 – SGD40. The seller said Pekalongan Batik is quite popular there. There is also a small thrift store called Dulu Dulu that caught my attention, because I saw a fat cat sleep on top of the display. The store sells random items, from old coins, old typewriter to old crystal lamp. The owner let me took picture of the front part of the shop, but not inside it. He said it would be dangerous for the stuff. Creepy huh? That’s when I decided I had enough and continued my journey to find Pisang Street.
Apparently I wasn’t too far off from my destination Pisang street is located just next to Pinang Street..:D. However, it was still not an easy task to find the Blackmarket boutique. If you see the picture below, you will know why I missed the store even though I passed it twice before I realized it’s not a random graffiti
Blackmarket sells the essential stuff for the fashionista. There are clothes from local Singaporean designers, like the girly shift dresses from Yumumu,Max.Tan by Max Tan with iss sexy white shirt collection, edgy androgynous collection from Reckless Ericka, structured feminine collection from Elohim and STOLEN collection, with its signature style, backless dress and tops. (Sorry I couldn’t find the website of the last brand).
They also sell Indonesian designer’s collection I saw Nikicio, Monday to Sunday and Proklamasi. And if I’m not mistaken, Danjyo – Hiyoji is now available there, too. I am so proud to learn that they are very popular there. And according to the shop attendant, Nikicio is one of the most popular brands there. Yay for Indonesia..
Well the name is self-explanatory Since I didn’t spend much time there, I couldn’t write too much, but I will tell you about Mustafa Center.
Mustafa Center is not like any supermarket/department store that I have ever visited. The place is so big, yet it’s so full of stuff. They sell everything, from gold jeweleries, plastic accessories, clothes, luggage, perfume and beauty products. However, I wasn’t really interested to buy the cosmetics since it’s cluttered around and some of them are opened and the others looked dirty. At least not the kind of product I want to use with direct contact to my skin. But really, the array of accessories are impressive. They sell every kind of necklaces, bracelets and earrings in the world!
I bought some small earrings, and to my surprise, when the cashier handed back the plastic to me, I saw that he tied it with some sort of plastic string, to make sure I could not open the wrap unless I tear it. I guess it’s to avoid people to shoplift in the store. Just like some local stores here in Indonesia :D.
They also sell perfumes with rather inexpensive price. At first I was hesitant as I thought they are not original, but apparently they are :). I even found my favorite perfume, Tendre Passion that has been discontinued. Now I know where to buy when I have used the perfume to the last drop
The American Touch
And now I’ll tell you why I didn’t spend too much time there Because I went to…. Victoria Secret!!
Yes, Victoria Secret has finally opened their first store outside of America, and it’s in Singapore. In Sentosa Island to be exact.
Make sure you drop by whenever you go to Sentosa Resort World (maybe to visit the Universal Studio, or to try your luck on their newly launched Casino) to get yourself a cute underwear and nicely smell lotion.
Oh unfortunately the outlet there doesn’t sell bra collection. Maybe it’s because they don’t have changing room there. They plan to open another new outlet by the end of the year, so we can have our fingers crossed until then