Ngee Ann City
Ngee Ann City is a commercial and civic project, the result of a collaboration between Ngee Ann Development Pte Ltd (NAD) and Orchard Square Development Corporation Pte Ltd (OSDC). The complex emphasizes the continuous philanthropic concern of Ngee Ann Kongsi in its efforts to work for the future of Singapore and the Teochew community. It enables the Kongsi to continue with its support of welfare, education and culture. An architectural wonder standing prominently at the heart of Orchard Road, Ngee Ann City is a city-within-a-city that showcases 7 levels of 110,450 square metres of sheer shopping and gastronomical adventure. Its unmistakably Oriental façade complements its Western interior to create a unique cosmopolitan shopping ambience. This building of polished granite and marble makes a majestic statement along Orchard Road and ranks as a must-visit for every resident and visitor. Officially opened by then Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong on 21 September 1993, the $520 million complex has a gross floor area of about 1.75 million square feet. The massive shopping and office complex sits at the major business and retail crossroads and is easily accessible by public transport. Today, Ngee Ann City stands proud as a shopping complex of distinction, an impressive regional brand name that has made its mark at home and overseas. Ngee Ann City houses over 130 specialty stores, putting international fashion labels such as Hugo Boss, Christian Dior and Cartier alongside other renowned brands such as Ermenegildo Zegna, Zara, A/X Armani Exchange and ck Calvin Klein. There are over 30 food and beverage outlets offering cuisines from Western to Cantonese to Indonesian to Thai. Among the top names are Sushi Tei Japanese Restaurant, the Crystal Jade Group of Restaurants, Sanur Indonesian Restaurant, Coca Restaurant and Seoul Garden – The Table Barbeque People. Asia’s largest bookstore, Books Kinokuniya and Japan's electronic giant, Best Denki are also found at Ngee Ann City. Ngee Ann City's anchor tenant is the impressive Takashimaya Department Store, a retail giant in Japan, which occupies a gross floor area of 35,000 square metres. With a choice of fashion and accessories for adults and children, enrichment centres, hair and beauty salons, health stores and pharmacies, restaurants and bars, even a fitness club, shoppers can indulge in some serious retail pampering. Ngee Ann City also impresses with its available event spaces. The indoor Takashimaya Square comes alive with regular bazaars and fairs that draw shoppers by the throngs. Outdoor, the complex's main attraction is its semi-circular Civic Plaza which had been a venue for many prestigious events. Capable of holding 3,000 people in the heart of the major shopping belt, the Civic Plaza has established itself as a great place to hold concerts, fairs, product launches, roadshows, fashion showcases, carnivals and lifestyle launches. The Civic Plaza is indeed a great asset to the community, a welcome relief to shoppers and an added attraction to Ngee Ann City. With its spectacular range of products and services, Ngee Ann City sets out to elevate the shopping experience to new heights. Guided by its corporate vision and directive, Ngee Ann City aims to offer visitors a total lifestyle shopping experience with a never-ending list of activities, good buys and great customer service. Ngee Ann City is especially proud to be a consecutive six-year award winner in the Singapore Tourism Board annual Tourism Awards. We clinched the Best Shopping Experience Award - Shopping Centre from 1999 to 2004. This string of accolades is once again, testimony to our status as the iconic shopping centre in Singapore . A development that dominates a sizeable part of Orchard Road, Ngee Ann City has already transformed the area into a microcosm of the city state of Singapore – a city that is pleasant to live and work in, and a city of beauty, character and grace. With its wide range of choice, Ngee Ann City is indeed the watchword of this city-within-the-city.
It also has other stores which I like to explore, including the amazing Kinokuniya. It has a huge collection of books, and can really kill a lot of time. I once spent my whole afternoon here.
Altogether this mall is one of the best places to window shop, and one of the best malls in the Orchard area.
If having an all in one departmental store wasn't already good enough, the mall also has quite a huge cold storage for grocery shopping, Kinokuya which is one of the best book stores in Singapore, a big Best Denki that retails a large variety of appliances and electronics and not forgetting many other shops such as Zara and Body Shop.
This mall is also a gourmet's haven, with shops selling all types of food and cuisine ranging from western to Japanese, most of which sell food of great quality. The event hall that they have which hosts many shops during festive periods is also one of the best in Singapore, as there is always a wide range of choices available. While this mall is one of the best in Singapore to me, my only grouse is that the toilets need an overhaul as they are not amongst the best toilets I have seen.
However, if you're looking to find luxury items, there are certain shops in here that cater to you as well. These include Chanel, Juicy Couture, Louis Vuitton and many many other places with similar price points.
The food here also comes in a wide variety. From the cafes and small eateries to top restaurants like Crystal Jade and Angus House. It is definitely a place that caters to many different people and I enjoy coming here.
I recommend Domani, an Italian cafe as well as Tonkichi, a Japanese restaurant. Service is good and the food excellent. For dessert lovers, the tiramisu or green tea cake at Domani is a must try (:
With various price ranges catering to different income levels, it is family-friendly and worth a visit.
From the exterior, Ngee Ann City is indeed imposing, its majestic facade can be seen easily once you alight from Somerset MRT or choose to walk down from Orchard MRT. The main attraction would be the famous Takashimaya, where crowds flock to get everything under the sun, from toys to clothes to perfumes to shoes. There are also quite a lot of eating spots in the mall, and a French bakery near Kinokoniya which sells fabulous bread. However, the best thing would be Kinokuniya itself. Home to the richest collection of books in Singapore, this place is really worth visiting. More rare editions of manga and comics (Doraemon) which I would never think be found were procured here. Moreover, the selection of books (non-fiction) is great as they offer a variety of well-written works by respectable researchers. The fiction section is huge too, with virtually all the most recent top-sellers and classics available.
However, if you choose to tour the mall for a whole afternoon, there is a lot more to see. For instance, a lego stall, where you can marvel at your favourite kid past-time and other clothing and food outlets.
Definitely one of the places worth a visit in town!
They also hold many large scale events at the basement where there's a huge space in the middle for a myriad of festive events or booths, take for example Chinese New Year. It's been awhile since I last went there; it used to be a yearly thing for my family, but busy times have kept us away. I hope I get to go down with my family members this year though!
The food court is also something I look forward to when I go there with a large number of stalls jammed into one small space. I love the hustle and bustle of the place especially during the weekends when it becomes even more packed. I do not see this mall becoming obsolete anytime soon.
Before Mid Autumn Festival, the square will gather all the hotels and restaurants selling mooncakes, so within one hour, you can sample the mooncakes from many different brands and also get to see the new flavours introduced for the year.
For Christmas, they will have a big toy fair so you can find some toys as Christmas presents for your children, some of the toys come with very good discounts.
CNY is coming soon, so they should be having a fair selling CNY cookies. Again, you can get to sample a lot of cookies and buy those you like, some at discounted prices. A lot of shopping malls will also have such events but I think the scale at Ngee Ann City is the biggest so I like visiting their events.