Hong Kong: An Insiders Guide to a Shopping Mecca

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Cat Street market in Sheung Wan is the place to go for oddities and antiques.

From high-end luxury to Asian curios and art, the city has it all when it comes to retail.

Hong Kong is a shopping paradise. The airport alone rivals Beverly Hills for sheer volume of high-end shopping. From upscale retailers to funky consignment shops, the city has plenty to offer tourists and businesspeople alike hoping to score some choice merchandise. This list provides a range of shopping options in the search for the perfect Hong Kong purchase. 

The obvious

Luxury looms large in Hong Kong as any walk through Central or Causeway Bay would indicate. Luxury fashion, watch and jewelry brands of even minor and middling standing have a presence in one of the world’s retail capitals. The largest concentration of luxury brands are in the plush malls of IFC and Landmark (Central), Pacific Place (Admiralty) and Times Square (Causeway Bay) and over on the other side in Kowloon  Harbour City mall in Tsim Sha Tsui.

The collectable

Filmart rather conveniently falls right in the middle of the biggest cultural month in Hong Kong, where art takes center stage. As well as the main event of Art Basel (which runs March 23-25 at the convention center), art lovers can pick up pieces from Art Central (Central Harbourfront, March 21-25), check out regional talent at the Asia Contemporary Art Show (Conrad Hotel, Central, March 17-20) and see more contemporary work at the HKwalls Street Art Festival (Wong Chuk Hang, March 18-26).

The obscure

From antiques to oddities and curios, there’s plenty of offbeat trinkets to pick up here. For antiques, head to Sheung Wan and Cat Street, where there are pre- and post-war China-flavored souvenirs. Ladies Market, which runs along Tung Choi Street in Mong Kok, is one of the biggest attractions in Hong Kong, offering everything from lucky cat statues to cosmetics.

The tailor-made

Hong Kong has a long and well-deserved reputation for tailoring and alterations, so for those who have the time, it’s worth getting things made to measure. In Central, tailors are concentrated on or just off Wellington Street. The more globally famous tailors, at least among obsessives, are on Kowloon side with the largest and most well-known concentration on Nathan Road, Tsim Sha Tsui. Check out Sam’s Tailor (90-94C Nathan Road, Tsim Sha Tsui) and W.W. Chan (30 Queens Road Central). For that ultra-luxe and yet personal touch seek out the recently opened Prologue (3 Shin Hing St., Central), where tailor Jerry Tong can run you through the latest styles and fabrics from Naples and Savile Row over a glass of excellent scotch. 

The exit

If one can’t find the time to shop in the city itself, Hong Kong Airport is heavily geared toward retail. Fun fact, the world’s dominant duty-free operator DFS is Hong Kong-based and so unsurprisingly, their home airport has a bewildering array of gifts, food and beverage, fragrances and of course luxury items, many exclusive to the company. Aside from DFS, Hong Kong Airport is also stocked to the gills with all the luxury brands (Gucci, Burberry, etc.) located downtown — but at duty-free prices.