with the arrival of new prestigious malls, bangkok's retail landscape has shifted into faster gear, inspiring existing shopping havens to step up their game. another important boost factor is tourism, and this year it's expected that thailand will be welcoming well over 30 million visitors. a large number will be spending some time in the bustling thai capital, and given its increasingly attractive retail infrastructure, they're likely to splurge while shopping as well. of all these visitors, the chinese are the fastest growing contingent, and they're already known in a few other destinations in the region as a force to be reckoned with it comes to shopping quality goods and seeking unique shopping experiences.
siam piwat has been a major player in the thai retail scene for many years, operating a number of high-end malls and lifestyle retail concepts across bangkok. following a thorough redevelopment scheme that took little over a year to be accomplished, the company recently reopened siam discovery, one of the most prominent stores in its portfolio. the 40,000 sqm. [430,556 sq.ft.] complex first bowed in 1998, and quickly became a regular hangout for the capital's savvy shoppers. aiming to cater even better to the needs of this demographic, the multimillion dollar transformation isn't just a cosmetic one, but has a whole new retail concept at its core.
officially rebaptized siam discovery – the exploratorium, the department store has now more than ever become a place where to find coveted goods amidst a series of inspiring, design-led settings, all created by architecture practice nendo from tokyo. the building's new futuristic façade sets the tone, signalling the transformation from afar, and inside this manifests by way of differently themed floors with curated product sections, and spiced up with branded concessions. the first three floors are dedicated to fashion, beauty and lifestyle accessories, while the upper two floors showcase homeware and specialty stores, and even a spa.
obviously, siam discovery also has a few retail firsts up its sleeve. nike has opened southeast asia's only concept store on the premises, stocking a coveted range of products, including new tech products which are available here ahead of other locations. sportswear peer adidas is present as well, fetauring an interactive store concept with exclusive collections made available for fans. from the fashion front there's world of issey miyake, the first concept store outside japan by, yes indeed, issey miyake, and a flagship store by comme des garçons. leading design brands hay, tom dixon and kartell have also set up shop on the premises, and obviously, that's not all.
given the size and variety of the products, it's not hard to imagine the offerings feature over 5,000 international and local brands. siam discovery cleverly anticipates the digital age and the plugged-in lifestyle of today's shoppers by empowering them through digital technology to make statements about their preferences and experiences. an expansive digital wall which allows shoppers to feature their personal instagram accounts, bears witness to this.adding up to an elevated shopping experience are food and beverage outlets integrated within the various retail and activity areas. mind you, more than 2,500 sqm. [26,910 sq.ft.] are dedicated to such establishments across the entire building. location: 989 thanon rama I [siam].