Bangkok has more than enough shopping malls to suit all kinds of lifestyles and budgets. But these Top 10 Shopping Malls offer the best shopping experiences, in terms of diversity of products, accessible location in downtown areas and overall shopping satisfaction. Whether you are looking for the most upscale, the trendiest, the funkiest, or the most specialized, you will find them among these shopping malls below.
1 Siam Paragon, Siam Open: 10:00 - 22:00, Nearest BTS: Siam
Siam Paragon is an immensely popular shopping mall housing a host of international high-end fashion brands, Southeast Asia’s largest aquarium, a 16-screen Cineplex, and a comprehensive selection of world cuisine. Located prominently in front of Siam BTS Skytrain station - the interchange of the two BTS lines - it is considered by many to be the centre of Bangkok. Considering the mall contains over 250 shops, the layout is logical and fairly compact, certainly when compared to the sprawling Central World mall nearby. However, this mall provides mainly luxury items for well-heeled Thais and international visitors with cash to splurge. If you are looking for something extra-special then Siam Paragon is definitely the place to find it.
2 Central World, Siam Open: 10:00-22:00, Nearest BTS: Siam, Chidlom
Central World mega-shopping complex offers one of the most exciting shopping experiences in Bangkok. It has everything from brand name clothing boutiques, funky fashion, high-tech gadgets, bookshops and designer furniture to imported groceries, a lineup of banks, beauty salons, gourmet eateries and even an ice-skating rink. With so many tantalizing options to explore, you could easily spend half a day here without realizing it. It will come as no surprise to anyone who has experienced the incredible size of Central World that this is, in fact, the largest mall in Thailand and among the largest in the world. We think it’s safe to say that if you are looking for a shopping fix in Bangkok this place will deliver. Occupying some 550,000 square metres of retail space and a total area size of 830,000 square meters – that is 30% larger than any other shopping center in central Bangkok – Central World has a range of offerings that encompass more than 500 stores, 100 restaurants and cafes, 15 cinemas, Kids' Zone and Learning Center(Genius Planet Zone), two anchor department stores, as well as a trendy food court, an expansive supermarket and an outdoor square for large-scale events like Bangkok's official New Year countdown party. The location is slap-bang in the heart of the Chidlom 'battleground of the malls' with direct Skytrain (BTS) access and home to the two famous shrines, Erawan Shrine and Trimurti Shrine. The shopping street concept – in a mall Central World's retail layout is influenced by the shopping street concept, allowing shoppers to spec several storefronts at a glance, whilst its overall design has placed a lot of emphasis on natural light / daylight that filters through the many skylights and open wells. Spectacular sculptures by famous artists are used as decoration features, and a glass mobile consisting of 3,500 glass balls hanging in an open well has had the crowds in awe. Specialized anchor 'mega-stores' – measuring between 2,000 and 8,200 square metres – include SuperSports, PowerBuy, B2S, Central Food Hall, SB Furniture and Toys 'R' Us. The department store Zen spans seven floors, while Zen World on 13 floors offer a fitness centre, spa, yoga, beauty center, as well as an educational and tourist promotion centre. Among the 500 world-class stores count 35 flagship brands like Zara, Miss Sixty and Timberland, and 36 'first stores' – the likes of the Japanese brand Uniqlo and the English brand Next. FLOOR BY FLOOR DIRECTORY Brands found on Level 1 of Central World – Big Brand Fashion Marks & Spencer Nautica Miss Selfridge Furla 5cm H.E. by Mango Theoddyssee CK Jeans Watch Station B+AB Massimo Dutti Kenneth Cole New York Fred Perry Charles & Keith Accessorize Kate Spade Samsonite Coach Calvin Klein Topshop Brands found on Level 2 of Central World– Male and Female Fashion and Accessories Topman Lee Urban studio Mango Guess Evita 4x4 men Mango touch Segafredo Lacoste The Body Shop Thann Zara XXI Forever 4x4 Man Kipling Brands found on Level 3 of CentralWorld – Young Fashion and Lifestyle G 2000 Auntie Anne The Terrace Harnn Karma Kamet NY LA Guitar Avenue CC Double O Hybrid Outfitters GAP Clarks The North Face Adidas Fox Crocs Xaact Brands found on Level 4 of Central World – Communications and Banking Power Buy B2S Nai In Jay Mart Nokia TG Fone Yumeya Big Camera Galleria World Camera TRUE Brands found on Level 5 of Central World – Beauty Clinics and Home Furnishings Meko Clinic Slim Up Centre Perfect Slim Sparsha Slimming Center Vieng Joom On Teahouse Practika Gallery T.M.D S.B. Furniture Logica Lotus Sleep Studio Brands found on Level 6 of Central World – Restaurants and Children’s Shops Cold Stone KFC Ootoya Yoshinoya Mister Donut Pepper Lunch Chabuton Asia Books Mother Care Toy R Us Brands found on Level 7 of Central World – Cinema, Groceries and Restaurants Central Food Hall SF World Cinema Din Tai Fung Kalaprapreuk Nobu Shabu Nara Central World Much more than a shopping mall, Central World also caters to the lifestyles of young urbanizes, families and teens. Entertainment options include The Rink, an open ice skating rink, Toys 'R' Us and 15-screen SF World Cinema. Good news for parents is the Genius Planet Zone (kids' zone and learning centre) and Thailand Knowledge Park (TK Park), where specialized supervision is provided in an 'edutainment' environment. Go right ahead, here you can drop the kids off with a clear conscience that they will have fun and their minds stimulated while you're getting a good old-fashioned dose of retail therapy. Central World has arrived. Bigger. Better. And, unmistakably, a shopping experience not to be missed. All that's missing is mini golf karts for rent.
The shopping street concept – in a mall Central World's retail layout is influenced by the shopping street concept, allowing shoppers to spec several storefronts at a glance, whilst its overall design has placed a lot of emphasis on natural light / daylight that filters through the many skylights and open wells. Spectacular sculptures by famous artists are used as decoration features, and a glass mobile consisting of 3,500 glass balls hanging in an open well has had the crowds in awe. Specialized anchor 'mega-stores' – measuring between 2,000 and 8,200 square meters – include SuperSports, PowerBuy, B2S, Central Food Hall, SB Furniture and Toys 'R' Us. The department store Zen spans seven floors, while Zen World on 13 floors offer a fitness center, spa, yoga, beauty center, as well as an educational and tourist promotion center. Among the 500 world-class stores count 35 flagship brands like Zara, Miss Sixty and Timberland, and 36 'first stores' – the likes of the Japanese brand Uniqlo and the English brand Next.
3 MBK, Siam Open: 10:00 - 22:00, Nearest BTS: National Stadium
MBK Center is probably Bangkok's most legendary shopping mall, popular with both tourists and locals, and busy with shoppers every day. There are eight floors packed with 2,000 shops that sell everything from clothing, fashion accessories, handbags, leather products and luggage to furniture, mobile phones, electric appliances, cameras, stationery and DVDs. Launched in 1986, MBK Center is a beehive of activity, especially on weekends, when half of Bangkok converges to shop for bargains. It's not as up-market or stylish as neighbouring Siam Discovery, Siam Center and the glitzy Siam Paragon, but it offers a mind-boggling range of goods spread over 89,000 square metres and is considerably less expensive. MBK Center is particularly easy to reach thanks to a direct walkway linking to National Stadium BTS Skytrain Station. Literally every taxi driver knows this most famous of shopping malls in Bangkok too, so you can hail a cab from anywhere but traffic can be intense.
On the ground floor of MBK you will find lines of stalls selling fashion, shoes and handbags, fast food outlets and a Tops Supermarket, with an open space dedicated to sales offering prices discounted by 30% to 50%. As you move up the levels you will find enclaves of products almost-randomly placed. Part of the fun of MBK is exploring the long straight paths looking out for things that take your fancy. As a rough guide, fashion can be found on the lower floors, a mass of electronics on the third and fourth floors, with home furnishings and souvenirs on the fifth and sixth. Like every shopping complex in Bangkok, there are plenty of options when you get hungry. There are two food courts - one local (sixth floor), one international (fifth floor) - with lots of choice. The top floor comprises of an entertainment complex boasting a multi-screen cinema, karaoke, a computer games arcade and plenty of other restaurants. MBK have also added a 3D Trick Art Museum, which is a fun family activity just perfect for a rainy day.
Bargains galore – and free air-conditioning!
To start with, fashion outlets cover everything from jeans, outsized clothing (for the 'larger' Western frame), shoes, handbags, accessories, jewellery, trendy apparel and famous-name brands. The bargain prices of many of these items mean that merchandise is often copy products or from questionable origin. It's important to take a closer look at the quality and craftsmanship. But if your idea of a shopping bargain is to pay a few dollars for an Adidas T-shirt or a Gucci belt – and authenticity is not an issue – head straight to MBK. Many of the products that can be found here are similar to that at markets, but the convenience of shopping in an air-conditioned environment beats hot and sticky markets – especially in the hot season. And, just like the markets, all prices are negotiable; MBK is probably the only mall in Bangkok where you can put your bartering skills to the test. You'll be surprised how much a big smile can knock off the original asking price. If you're shopping wholesale, prices get even more competitive.
Heaven for Electronic Goods and Mobile Phones
The fourth floor is dedicated to mobile phones, DVDs, CDs and all kinds of related gadgets and paraphernalia in a market-type environment with stalls crammed into every available space. New phones, second-hand phones, starter packs, the latest (copy) DVDs, PC games and games consoles, MP3 players and what have you... A flagship tenant is the four-storey Tokyu Department Store, the only one in Bangkok and a leading department store in Japan, which offers a wide range of quality merchandise like clothing, apparel, cosmetics and household goods at reasonable prices. On the fourth level is has a supermarket too. There's also a TOPS supermarket at MBK (ground level) and a mini indoor craft market (on the sixth floor) with a range of arts and crafts from all over Thailand – a lot of it though the typical souvenir-type items targeted at tourists.