Known for the longest time as the heart of shopping in Singapore. Orchard road has all the latest designer shops and everything in between.
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After living in London, I didn’t expect Singapore to offer me anything as close to the size or quality of shopping destinations such as Oxford Street and Westfield Shepherds Bush. Singapore, I apologise. Orchard Road makes Oxford Street look like right old mess, outdated and horrendously busy. Sure, don’t head to Orchard Road expecting a quietly pleasant shopping experience, but if you’re after an enormous amount of popular, high quality shops in a place which overwhelms you with its size and architecture, it’s the place for you.
Although the layout of the road of a whole is a bit of a pain, it’s just that, nothing more than just a bit of a pain. If you want to get to a shop directly across the road you can’t just cross, you have to go up and down the road until you find a suitable place and it adds a bit of time and effort but since when has walking ever been bad for you? There are the usual crowds and flyer distributors that you get in all popular shopping areas all over the world, but with practise you learn to dodge them at expert pace.
If you just need a quick pair of socks, Forever 21 is there. Want to splurge thousands of dollars? Never fear, choose from Burberry, Prada or Louis Vuitton, the list is endless. Although there are cheaper and quieter places to shop across Singapore, Orchard Road is always a favourite due to its size and the variety of things that you can buy there. I’m still shocked by how clean it always seems even with thousands visiting everyday, and how beautiful and modern the whole road is. A truly impressive shopping experience.
Orchard Road - otherwise known as Town - is a popular shopping location for both locals and tourists, youngsters and adults.
Youth often visit Town as it is home to the largest branches of boutiques such as H&M, Forever 21, Cotton On, and New Look. A popular go-to for youths would be Sc*pe near Somerset MRT, which hosts flea markets on the weekends and an extremely trendy retail space known as Sc*pe Underground. My favourite trait about Orchard Road would be the abundance of Ice-cream Uncles! If I ever find myself dying in the heat as I attempt the hike (an exaggeration) from Somerset to Orchard, I’d stop by any of the Ice-cream Uncles stalls and get myself my favourite $1 ice-cream wrapped in rainbow bread.
Orchard Road becomes especially crowded during Christmas, as people flock there to soak in the Christmas-y atmosphere under the exorbitant decorations that may catch fire. Yes, many unfortunate accidents have been occurring this past moment, so be a bit more careful when you’re visiting there today!
I enjoy shopping at Orchard a lot. I must admit that some of their shops are pretty expensive, especially the high end ones on the top levels of ION Orchard. Nevertheless, there are many shops like H&M, Forever21, Topshop, New Look, Body Shop, Lush, L'Occatine, and many others if you're looking for a range of clothing stores to shops selling body lotions and soaps.
If you're hunting for some good food, I recommend Jones the Grocer's at ION. They serve really hood coffee as well. I like to frequent the TWG at ION to grab my macarons too! Orchard is much more well known for their high end fashion brands like Prada, Gucci and Miumiu. I'm a fan of Faber Castel, so if you're interested in getting some quality color pencils, they have a shop at ION too. There's a bookstore called Prologue and I really like to go there. What I don't like about there service there is that they usually don't allow students to stay and study, even if we do buy a cup of coffee and a meal to sit and enjoy.
I'll recommend Paris Baguette at Wisma Atria, which is also at Orchard, just next to ION. They have lovely croissants and pastries. The Koh Grill and Sushi Bar at the top floor in the food court also serves a delicious tray of makis*. They're most famous for their "Shiok Maki".
Orchard road is also a wonderful place to go to during Christmas. The Christmas lights and decorations are beautiful and dazzling. The colours are bright, the atmosphere is festive, it's a great time to enjoy yourself with a loved one just taking a nice stroll after dinner!
*maki = handmade sushi rolls
As a local, I am personally quite tired of Orchard Road - its getting pretty monotonous; I now perceive Orchard Road as nothing but having rows and rows of shopping malls with way over priced goods. However, it might be a shopping haven and it is MUST go to place for tourists. You can't say you've been to Singapore without going to Orchard Road! It is good for window-shopping; but you can definitely find cheaper and more worthy finds elsewhere; that is, if you have the time to explore the hidden corners of Singapore.
It might be hard to just walk down Orchard Road peacefully and not get interrupted by either flyer distributors, policy agents or simply passer-bys requesting for a photographer. It is pretty nice in the evening when the weather is cooler and the night lights are on.
If you're on a low budget, Orchard Road, for all its glamour and glitz, is the last place for you to go. Singapore's premier destination for the high-classed and tourists, it was an absolutely fantastic experience for me whenever i visit the place. Why the irony here, well heres the story of my life.
I really love nice stuff, and the designer labels, especially H&M and watches are wonderful. Moreover, the multitude of electronic stores, Takashimaya and Kinokuniya in town offers an array of products too difficult to resist. Whenever I visit, I simply must buy something, which is a detriment to my $500 allowance a month as an NSF. In my opinion, Orchard Road makes for some fantastic, but wholly expensive shopping.
However, Orchard Road is the also the site of many baskers if you take notice. Frequent campaigns to raise awareness on social issues are also conducted along this prime stretch of land with its huge volume of visitors. I took part in a campaign as a team leader 2 years back to promote the need to smile more and we did it right outside Wisma Atria. Moreover, throughout numerous community services, I have been in the area frequently to solicit for donations and helped in distributing pamphlets for Nature Society (Singapore). During festive seasons, Orchard Road also takes on a distinct changing of theme, walk down during Christmas, New Year and Deepavali to see the difference!
Overall, a splendid place! But not a place for the low in cash.
Orchard Road is a great place to be in for shopaholics, whether you got money or got no money. All the mega-malls are situated there, like ION and 313. It is especially beautiful to visit during festivals. During Christmas, the streets are decked with elaborate decorations and the mood is incredibly festive and uplifting.
Convenience is no issue. Tons of buses ply Orchard, and it boasts of 3 different MRT stations in its territory. Be warned, it can get crowded during weekends and public holidays. Thus, I suggest doing your leisure shopping only during weekday mornings. Makes for so much more ease and enjoyment.
Orchard Road used to reign supreme as the king of all shopping streets. But I fear its place may soon be taken by rebellious vagrants. Cue JEM, Westgate, and JCube. Same genre of stores and equally attractive. Definitely a worthy competitor if you hate the crowds of Orchard or it's simply too far for you.