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Singapore welcomes array of foreign stores in 4Q12


Retailers with themed novelty products also set up shop.

Here's a review of the retail scene in 2012 with the openings of new stores, food and beverage (F&B) outlets and retail malls from Colliers International: 

In Singapore’s prime Orchard Road shopping belt, Mulberry opened its first Asian flagship store in Mandarin Gallery in October. Besides its popular bags, the 3,983-sq ft duplex will also stock the British brand’s ready-to-wear clothes, shoes and accessories for women. At around the same time, Paul Smith, another British brand opened its Singapore flagship next to the Mulberry store in Mandarin Gallery. French menswear label Celio opened its third store in Plaza Singapura and its fourth in Ngee Ann City during the quarter.

The influx of stores did not only include fashion brands, as retailers with themed novelty products also set up shop. About 30 leading Japanese apparel and cosmetics brands are now located on the ground floor of Plaza Singapura’s new extension. Called JRunway, the 3,600-sq ft store is the first Japanese multi-label boutique in Southeast Asia.

On the F&B front, at least five new diners and restaurants offering American-style fare have entered the local market. Modern diner and ribs restaurant Morganfield’s and seafood diner Boston Seafood Shack both started operating at the new Star Vista mall in Buona Vista. Suprette, a whimsical diner opened at boutique hotel Kam Leng in Jalan Besar. There is also the casual Cajun seafood eatery, The Cajun Kings, in Jalan Riang in Braddell Heights Estate. In the upmarket arena, Ruth’s Chris Steak House opened at the Marina Mandarin.

There has also been a wave of Korean barbecue restaurants, with three well-known Korean barbecue chains launching in Singapore. These are Boss BarBQ at Clarke Quay, Kkongdon BBQ at Marina Square and Bornga at The Star Vista. There are now no fewer than 150 Korean restaurants island wide feeding a community of about 30,000 Koreans in Singapore.

Renown United States and Canadian chain Krispy Kreme doughnuts also announced that it will bring its doughnut shops to Singapore. 15 Krispy Kreme franchise locations will be set up around the island over the next five years.

To add to the buzz, several shopping centres reopened during the last three months of the year, in time to capitalise on the year-end holiday and shopping season. The refurbished former Amara Shopping Centre at Tras Street in Tanjong Pagar reopened as 100AM, with at least 40% filled with dining options that include Skinny Pizza, The Oyster & Crab Restaurant and Cedele among others. The target markets for 100AM are the corporate diners in the Central Business District (CBD).

Also catering to the population in the CBD is the once-quiet Chinatown Point. Reopened at the end of November after a renovation period that cost more than $90 million, the 311,725-sq ft mall located at the junction of New Bridge Road and Upper Cross Street targets professionals, managers, executives and businessmen, followed by families and tourists. The mall’s occupants include a National Library branch, as well as FairPrice, a home-grown supermarket chain and Daiso, a Japanese budget chain retailing household and novelty products.

At the Dhoby Ghaut end of Orchard Road, Plaza Singapura is now integrated with the adjacent The Atrium@Orchard’s retail podium, boasting an additional 100 stores in the new extension, bringing the mall’s total number of stores to 320. The $150-million facelift took almost 18 months to complete.

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