Tuesday, April 6, 2010


is the key to a successful shopping trip in Hong Kong. Today I left the house knowing I had to find something for the two weddings that are fast approaching. Shopping is not straight forward in Hong Kong. Ok, there might be lots and lots of shops, but this makes it all the more tiresome.
As I may have mentioned previously Plazas are the way things are done over here. Huge plazas, that all look very similar, modern interiors, everything on offer, trying to think back to that "floaty nude dress..." is so difficult. Once you have left a shop, it's pretty strenuous to return to it! So today, I went shopping alone, knowing it was going to be a long day, ready for the task that was in front of me.
Tsim Sha Tsui (TST) is probably one of the best shopping spots and if you're really not happy with what you have there, then you can jump onto the Star Ferry and head over to Central. Harbour City (plaza) does have literally everything under one roof. An amazing designer boutique section including Marni (my favorite), huge array of shops, food and dining, whole floor dedicated for children, beauty, home, stationary... but finding your way around it, impossible. I was in there for so long, looking for one shop that I had noticed a couple of weeks before while eating at a nearby restaurant. I didn't get stressed out, I simply took my time, ignored people barging into me and glided around in my own little world. Until, something caught my eye in a shop, a shop without customers, with three members of staff. I debated whether to go in as I knew there might be some hard-selling tactics on the cards, but as I was on my own, pretty relaxed I thought I would check it out. MISTAKE.

"Hello, welcome""

(Instant shop assistant glued to my side)

"You can try"
(Right in my face)

"Oh, thanks"

"Why don't you try this? This is nice, you should try this"
(Pulls out a random dress off the rail, unlike anything I have looked)


"Try this"
(Holds it up to me)

"No, look this really isn't what you do, this isn't how you sell something"
(I walked out)

When I got home and told my husband the tale, he said it's a real sorry state when they have to bring themselves to that level, really go for the hard sell and degrade themselves like that. One of Hong Kong's tourist pulls is the shopping element that this city hosts. But having all these shops on offer, designer after designer in plaza after plaza with hardcore sales staff pushing you throughout, the experience is spoilt. I know when Manchester announced that it was opening it's second Vivienne Westwood shop I thought it was a bit of a shame, was it really necessary? Hong Kong hosts over 12 Vivienne Westwood shops...

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