Bugis and Kampong Glam Shopping
Where to Shop and What to Buy in Bugis and Kampong Glam
The original home of the Malay aristocracy during the time of Sir Stamford Raffles, Kampong Glam, named after a tree, is the Malay-Muslim enclave established centuries ago. Attracting traders and immigrants from Malaysia, Indonesia, India and the Middle East in those days, the area has grown into a rich cultural and flourishing hub. Browse around quaint shophouses restored on streets named after exotic Middle Eastern cities such as Baghdad, Bussorah and Kandahar.
By day, the streets teem with shops selling Islamic books, textiles, batiks, sarongs, handwoven baskets, oil-based perfume scents, indigenous art and craft. By night, out comes the carpets, cushions , kebabs, and shisha or hookah (water pipes filled with aromatic tobacco) and one gets the feeling of being transported to a Middle Eastern hub. This area is easily accessible by public transport and the nearest MRT stop is the Bugis station. A gazetted conservation area, it takes on a joyous festive air during the fasting month of Ramadan. The precinct is transformed into a colorful zone with cultural performances and food bazaar. If you are tired from shopping at the modern mega malls in the city, this is the place for a fascinating cultural respite.Read More
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All Shopping Places in Kampong Glam
Albert Mall is not really a mall – more like a lane of street vendors offering a range of unusual goods and services. From Chinese aunties who set up their unlicensed fortune telling stalls, to pop-up massage areas and vendors selling traditional medicines to cure all sorts of alignments, this really is one of Singapore’s more unusual shopping experiences. An interesting place to stop by, particularly if you’re making your way to the ever-popular Kwang Im Thong Hood Cho Temple, which lies at the end of the route if you’re walking from Bugis MRT.
- Opening Hours: All stall and vendor start setting up from around midday
- Location: From Bugis Village to Bencoolen Street and from Middle Road to Rochor Road.
At the very heart of Singapore’s Arab community and the surrounding Kampong Glam neighbourhood is Arab Street, which is packed full of great shopping opportunities. Most of the shops on this quaint little road specialise in quality fabrics, Islamic dresses, flamboyant accessories, rare crystals and gems. Those venturing this will also find plenty of cafes and restaurants serving some great hallal food and sweet Arabian teas too. You could combine shopping on Arab Street with a trip to one of the area’s most distinct landmarks, the epic Sultan Mosque, which is situated at the top of the road. Arab Street is walking distance from the nearby Bugis MRT Station.
- Opening Hours: Shops typically operate from 12:00-20:00 Daily
- Location: Arab Street, Singapore
Beach Road Army Market
Living up to its name, the Army Market on Singapore’s Beach Road stocks a vast amount of army surplus. Although the market is obviously popular with those serving in the military, it does also draw in a fair amount of army enthusiasts with an interest in this these types of clothing and memorabilia, as well as anybody who fancies grabbing themselves a study set of boots at a bargain price. With over 100 stores selling everything from uniforms, helmets, hats, t-shirts, jackets, boots and camping gear (such as tents and sleeping bags), there’s no better place to find this kind of gear anywhere else in Singapore.
- Opening Hours: Varies (generally 10:00 - 20:00)
- Address: 501 Beach Road (opposite Golden Mile Complex)
Formerly known as Luma, Bugis+ is a modern 10-storey mall opposite the slightly more popular Bugis Junction shopping complex. Instantly recognisable with its crystal mesh-like exterior, which from afar look like balls of cotton wool glued on to the outside, Bugis+ has a fine selection of big high street names (including Pull & Bear, New Look, Berksha and Uniqlo) as well as a long list of independent stores selling locally designed clothes. On the higher up floors, you’ll find a sturdy range of restaurants and fast food chains, and at the very top there’s a multi-screen cinema. A good alternative shopping option if you want to beat the crowds of the nearby Bugis Junction or escape the heat of the Bugis Street Market.
- Opening Hours: 10:00 - 22:00 Daily
- Address: 201 Victoria Street
- Tel: +65 6634 6810
Bugis Junction is no ordinary Singapore shopping mall. This modern development features a wonderful imitation lane of colonial style shop houses selling locally design dresses, T-shirts and accessories, as well as a few cute cafes where you can sip an iced coffee and pretend you’ve been taken back in time. One glance over to the huge glass roofed section, which is really Bugis Junction’s centrepiece, and you’ll remember exactly where you are. Under the giant glass structure you’ll find a range of high street shops and a good range of dining option, including fine dining restaurants, fast food outlets and some hawker-style vendors. Bugis Junction is directly accessible from Bugis Read More...
- Opening Hours: 10:00 - 22:00
- Address: 200 Victoria Street
- Tel: +65 6557 6557
The sprawling Bugis Street Market – commonly referred to as ‘Bugis Village’ - is home to hundreds of shops and independent retail stalls selling tourist knickknacks, fabrics, accessories, shoes, vintage items and food. Just across from Bugis MRT Station you’ll find the bazaar’s entrance, which is instantly recognisable with its iconic red exterior and signs. Enter inside the maze of avenues to explore Singapore’s largest flea market, as well as probably the cheapest. You’ll find tourist T-shirts for S$2, sunglasses for S$5 and a whole range of tasty local snacks from around S$2-5. Read More...
- Opening Hours: 10:00 - 20:00
- Location: Bugis Street (opposite Bugis MRT)
If you are lucky, the resident cats will greet you at the entrance to this fantastic vintage store. After years of delving into both her mother’s and grandmother’s wardrobe, Lovie opened Dulcet Fig in 2007 to bring clothes from another era to her customers. Everything is personally picked out and the collection is impressive, with new items coming in every two to three weeks, including genuine 70s dresses and leather bags from the 60s. Prices are decent too, with accessories starting at around 35 SGD and clothes starting at 20 SGD. Read More...
- Opening Hours: Mon – Sat 13:00 - 22:00, Sun 13:00 - 20:00
- Address: 41 Haji Lane, Singapore 189234
- Tel: +65 6396 5648
Fabulous Fads has a thing for British Designers: think satchels, top hats and even some Union Jack inspired items. Their philosophy is to bring a taste of Europe to Singapore, to allow their customers to express their individuality, style and stand out from the crowd. The attention to detail in their items is fantastic, including simple day dresses with cute cartoon animal lining, fitted navy jackets with white piping and green and purple floral tea dresses. If you have penchant for styles from the 50s and 60s they also stock a great selection of retro blouses and skirts, and if your vintage style starts later in time, the 80s are also catered for with some cool leather and denim jackets.
- Opening Hours: Mon - Thu 12:00 - 20:00, Sat - Sun 11:00 - 20:00
- Address: 80 Haji Lane, Singapore 189234
- Tel: +65 62940889
Golden Mile Complex
Whilst Singapore is famous for its numerous ethnic enclaves, including Chinatown, Little India and the Arab Quarter, not many will have heard of Little Thailand, which is found in and around the Golden Mile Complex near Nicoll Highway MRT Station. This ageing complex of shops, restaurants and nightlife is a magnet for the small Thai community in Singapore, as well as a few expats and locals who want their own taste of Thai culture. On sale you’ll find Thai music CDs, DVDs, spices, dried food products, bottles of Thai beer and the odd fashion stall. The restaurants here serve up some of the best (and cheapest) tom yam kung and pad Thai we’ve had in town. The Golden Mile Complex really livens up after dark though, when the shops close and bars and Thai discos open.
- Opening Hours: Midday onwards, daily
- Address: Golden Mile Complex, 5001 Beach Road
Haji Lane is one of Singapore’s most well-loved alternative shopping streets, specialising in boutique stores selling locally designed pieces. This small lane draws in all of Singapore’s cool kids, as well as some in-know tourists wanting to spice up their shopping experience in Singapore. The colourful and cute road, which is also famed as being one of the narrowest streets in town, lies at the heart of Kampang Glam, just a few blocks away from the central Bugis MRT station. We’ve covered some of the best shops on Haji Lane in more detail here. Read More...
- Opening Hours: Most shops typically open from 12:00 - 20:00
- Location: Haji Lane, Singapore
OG Albert Complex
A three-minute walk from the Bugis MRT station lies OG Albert, a household department store in Singapore. A store for fashion, jewellery, cosmetics, watches, toys, furnishings and food, OG is popular with families for generations. Wander around the pedestrian mall in front of the Complex – it’s constantly buzzing with vendors selling knick knacks, streetwear, food stuff and religious items.
- Address: 60 Albert Street, #01-00, Singapore 189969
Sim Lim Square is a giant technology mall a short walk bordering the Bugis area in the south, and Little India towards the north. This multiplex of computers, cameras, phones, gadgets, TVs and audio equipment is the largest IT mall in the whole of Singapore, with nearly 200 stores spread over six floors. Prices are cheap – even cheaper if you try your hand at a spot of bargaining – and the choices are inevitably vast. If you get bored of the gauntlet of gadgets, there are a few decent restaurants and cafes where you make an escape to, such as Manzeel Tandoor and Joyful Noodles. Read More...
- Opening Hours: 10:30 - 21:00 Daily
- Location: Corner of Maxwell Road and South Bridge Road
- Address: 1 Rochor Canal Road, Singapore 188504
- Tel: +65 6338 3859
The charm in shopping here lies in the streets adorned with picturesque shophouses converted into retail outlets and food outlets specializing in delicious Muslim cuisine. Shop for Malay, Indonesian and local souvenirs at Bussorah Mall –antiques including the keris (Malay dagger) at the Malay Art Gallery; Peranakan slippers from Little Shophouse, batik from Kupu Kupu, teddy bears from Sasha’s, scents from Jamal Kazura Aromatics and more. On Arab St, view the rattan and willow basketry at Rishi Handicraft and San Marco Collection for funky fashion, costume and jewellery.
Need to find fabrics for a wedding or a grand occasion? There are some gorgeous chiffon, silk, cotton georgette and other luxurious fabric finds from Bobby’s Fabrics. Try your luck at haggling at some of these stores. Parallel to Arab St is Haji Lane, believed to be Singapore’s narrowest lane. A quaint alley, there are some surprising finds such as the White Room boasting Japanese designerwear, carpets at Anil Brothers and classic bags and vintage wear at Dulcetfig.
Sungei Road Thieves' Market
Back in the day, this bustling road full a flea market-style stalls was the place to come and buy stolen goods...hence the name ‘Thieves’ Market’. Today, Sungei Road is still as bustling as it was back then, although now all the goods on sale are legitimate and properly regulated. All of Singapore’s hipsters, antique enthusiasts and bargain hunters flock here, browsing the lines of old souvenirs, trinkets, watches, vintage clothes, worn-out electrical items and the odd piece of cool artwork. It is certainly a great alternative if you get bored of the air-conditioned mega malls of Singapore. Please note that Sungei Road Thieves' Market is located halfway between Little India MRT and Bugis MRT.
- Opening Hours: 11:00 - 19:00 Daily
- Location: Sungei Road
Tangers stocks the latest Korean designed-and-made clothing and accessories which they get shipped directly from Seoul. The draw here is definitely in the simplicity and design of the capsule collection which includes not only great basic shirts and dresses, but also items with enough flair to make you stand out in the office and at after-work drinks parties – think lace, roses and a dash of glitter. Their rounded hem tank tops would smarten up a pair of jeans, especially when paired with some of their chunky colourful accessories. They also stock a great selection of floaty skirts and dresses, which go perfectly with the vast number of skinny belts Read More...
- Opening Hours: 14:00 - 21:00 Daily
- Address: 4 Haji Lane, Level 2 (Turn Right), Singapore 189234
The bright turquoise store front of Wicked Laundry can’t help but catch your eye as you walk past. The collection inside is equally outstanding. It’s a brilliant, edgy mix of handmade clothes as well as some amazing vintage pieces, including a rack of bold print scarves. The palette used in Wicked Laundry’s designs is technicolour: their summer shoes are made out of citrus-fruit-hued laces, as well as funky tangerine wedges, and an eye-catching, bright yellow floral jumpsuit. The quirkiness doesn’t stop at the clothing; they have a hat collection to die for: boaters with spotty navy bands, felt cloche hats with pheasant feathers and fedoras that would make Frank Sinatra proud.
- Opening Hours: Mon – Fri 12:30 - 20:30, Sat - Sun 13:00 - 20:00
- Address: 76 Haji Lane, Singapore 189269
- Tel: +65 6298 9110
Zhai Eco Collection
This Singaporean company focus on eco clothing, but imagine smart and chic rather than shapeless and unfashionable. Great for those with sensitive skin, this soft and luxurious collection is made from bamboo, one of Asia’s most sustainable natural resources. The focus is currently on women’s clothing with stand out pieces including a beautiful silk and bamboo dress for evening events to more casual sportswear. For the moment guys have to console themselves with smart tees, polo shirts and underwear. The shop also displays a beautiful collection of handmade jewellery, including a chunky rodium and rose quartz necklace.
- Opening Hours: 11: 00 – 20:00
- Address: 82 Haji Lane, Singapore 189269
- Tel: +65 63966865