Saturday, July 14, 2012

the whole world is here

Today Yahoo! featured the 15 largest shopping malls in the world. Bangkok's Terminal 21 is not one of them, but if there's a list of "Most Fun Shopping Malls", it would be right up there.

From their brochure (unedited): Terminal21 brings you to the whole new experience of shopping with Market Street Style. We combine unique destinations from around the world such as Rome, Paris, Tokyo, London, Istanbul, San Francisco and Hollywood into one fully-furbished department store. Enjoy a perfect combination of fashion, food, and film, with more than 600 shops for urbanistas including the famous Urbanation. Fancy the 36 meter long escalator that connects together all the continents in our welcoming world. Easily reached by both BTS and MRT train service, we invite you to be the first to experience the brand new Terminal21 - The Whole World is Here.

Doesn't that sound like fun?

My favorite floors are the third (Istanbul) and first (Tokyo). Mostly because of the pretty light fixtures, but also because of the shops' merchandising.

Like any other shopping mall, Terminal 21 has the usual supermarket, cinema, and international food and clothing chains. But there are also some gems like 15th March which sells unique, limited-edition T-shirts which are designed by a very talented and pretty single lady who works too hard and doesn't have time for a boyfriend. The T-shirts are a sideline which she works on at night; she has a demanding corporate day job. Her mother, who minds the store, told me all that.

Although I'm not much of a shopper, I liked shopping at Terminal 21. I would've wanted to browse some more if I had infinite free baggage allowance.

But it was the washrooms that blew me away. Each one is THEMED. (Yes, the London Underground one is also a bathroom-- on the second floor.)

And all the toilets are hi-tech! In fact, there are directions posted on every cubicle door for those who might be overwhelmed by all the buttons.

Happiness is a warm toilet bowl which sprays water and blows air when you're done. I'm not ashamed to say that I visited five public loos in this building, and I thoroughly enjoyed all of them.

Terminal 21 has a comprehensive website. In terms of location, it's pretty hard to beat. It is essentially the intersection of the BTS Skytrain (Asoke Station) and the MRT (Sukhumvit Station).

Oh, and wifi is free. Just go to the customer service counter and register. They'll give you a password which is valid for an entire year. How cool is that?

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