The city of Kuala Lumpur isn’t just home to the famed Petronas Twin Towers, one of the world’s most stunning architectural wonders, but is also every shopaholic’s paradise
Kuala Lumpur is well-known as a shopping haven and in some ways even better than its neighbouring cities in terms of value. Prices for some luxury items, for example, are tagged annually but from month to month the currency exchange rate may fluctuate resulting in the items being cheaper for visitors from abroad.
Shoppers from mainland China have also commented that they feel more confident shopping for branded items at authorised shops in Malaysia because the items are guaranteed to be genuine. Malaysians from all over the country also flock to the capital city to shop because of better variety and choice. There are many shopping malls spread out across the city and in the suburbs. In this article, we shortlist 10 of the top shopping destinations in the city that you should check out.
Pavilion Kuala Lumpur
Pavilion KL, with more than 550 outlets, tops the list as a popular first-stop for shoppers looking for branded luxury items, perfumes, cosmetics, fashion apparels and accessories. The mall is also a popular place for dining with several restaurants on level seven, Tokyo Street with several Japanese restaurants on level six and Food Republic food court on level one. The main anchor tenant is Parkson Elite which occupies four floors. The mall attracts mostly tourists from abroad.
If you cannot get enough of branded luxury items, walk across the street from Pavilion to Starhill Gallery which is linked with JW Marriott Hotel Kuala Lumpur. At Starhill, you will find fashion labels like Dior, Kenzo, Louis Vuitton and Valentino; watch brands like Audemars Piguet, Chopard, Omega, Patek Philippe and Rolex; and many other jewellery and lifestyle stores.
Suria KLCC Mall
The shopping experience in the city would not be complete without a visit to Suria KLCC Mall, housed within the iconic Petronas Twin Towers. The mall has more than 300 stores offering mostly high-end branded luxury items. There are several attractions within the mall catering to adults and children including: Aquaria KLCC, Petronas Discovery Centre, Petronas Art Gallery and Dewan Filharmonik Petronas (Philharmonic Hall). In the evening, shoppers are treated to a water fountain show outside the mall at 8pm, 9pm and 10pm. The mall is popular among locals and tourists especially from those from the Middle East.
Robinsons Kuala Lumpur
A newcomer to the shopping scene, Robinsons Kuala Lumpur, is located within Four Seasons Place which is just a block away from Suria KLCC Mall. The store, with its origins in Singapore 160 years ago, offers a wide range of high-end household items, bedding and kitchen utensils. There is also a small selection of fashion apparels, shoes and accessories. Across the road from Robinsons, you can also check out Avenue K shopping mall.
Mid Valley Megamall
Mid Valley Megamall (MVM), located about nine kilometres outside the city centre, has more than 400 outlets selling almost anything you can think of, including branded luxury items. The shopping mall is mostly crowded especially on weekends and holidays and finding parking space can be a nightmare but fortunately there is a train station within walking distance so you need not drive there. There is an exhibition centre within the mall which holds expos regularly, attracting even more visitors. The Gardens Mall is a recent extension of MVM adding another 200 outlets with anchor tenants being Robinsons and Isetan. The items being sold at The Gardens are more premium compared with MVM. The mall is popular among locals.
1 Utama Shopping Centre
1 Utama shopping centre, built 20 years ago, was one of the pioneer megamalls in the suburbs. Located about 16 kilometres outside the city, it remains as one of the biggest and busiest malls in the country, especially after the addition of a new wing which brings the total number of stores to more than 700. The mall has a large rooftop garden, cinemas, a 36-lane bowling alley and several recreational sporting activity centres catering to the younger group. The mall attracts mostly locals, including residents from around the area.
Sunway Pyramid Shopping Mall
Sunway Pyramid is another suburban mall located in a residential suburb about 20 kilometres outside the city. Positioned as a shopping and entertainment hub, it attracts locals, tourists and the younger crowd, especially students from around the area. The mall has over 900 outlets including its own indoor skating rink and is linked with a few hotels and the Sunway Lagoon theme park.
Central Market Kuala Lumpur
Central Market began life as a wet market in 1888 and has now been transformed into an air-conditioned shopping centre which promotes Malaysian culture and heritage. You will find more than 300 shops at Central Market selling antiques, local handicrafts, art works, souvenirs and collectibles catering to tourists and art lovers.
Low Yat Plaza
Gadget lovers should not miss Low Yat Plaza, one of the oldest shopping malls in the city specialising in electronics, smartphones, photography and IT products. There are over 350 stores within the mall and it is advisable to shop at the bigger stores such as Compu-zone, Jayacom, Sri Computers, Thundermatch and Viewnet which offer shop warranties. Most of the famous brands have a flagship store here including Apple, Dell, Huawei and Xiaomi.
Last but not least, visit a ‘pasar malam’ (night market), the local version of the flea market. Malaysia’s weather is too hot for day markets, hence the emergence of night markets across the city but the biggest would be the one along Jalan Cerdas, Taman Connaught, about 15 kilometres outside the city. Stretching over two kilometres, it would take you a few hours to check out the 700 makeshift stalls along the road selling a large variety of items ranging from clothes, books and toys to household utensils and even plants. Visit the market on an empty stomach so that you can savour the best collection of Malaysia’s street foods on one outing. The Taman Connaught night market is only open on Wednesday nights from 5pm until 11pm.
Downtown Kuala Lumpur and some of the popular shopping malls can get very congested especially during peak hours. The best way to get around it is to take the train if possible or use a ride-hailing app; Grab is by far the most popular within the city.
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