ASIA

SOUTHEAST ASIA’S TOPPEN MALL TO BE ‘HEART AND HUB’ OF JOHOR BAHRU

IKEA Southeast Asia’ new Toppen Shopping Centre in Tebaru, a suburb of Malaysia’s Johor Bahru, is already more than 60 per cent tenanted as construction continues on what will become the new ‘heart and hub’ of the border town. The new centre will feature four floors of retailing, with a multi-purpose piazza-style rooftop including community garden, play areas, sports offerings, a cinema and al fresco eateries. It will be home to 300 tenants across all categories, including international brands and local specialty stores. Tenants already signed up to the scheme include Harvey Norman, TGV and B.I.G. The Toppen Shopping Centre is on schedule to open by the third quarter of next year. It is next to Aeon Tebrau mall, described by IKEA Southeast Asia MD Christian Rojkjaer as a “friendly competitor” and home to Thai furniture and homewares rival Index Living Mall.

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WATCH INSPIRES NEW GINZA BOUTIQUE



Using its Connected Modular watch as inspiration, Tag Heuer’s new Ginza boutique aims to reinvent the customer experience. In a world-first concept, every aspect of the store is modular from the digital façade and displays to the decor. A highlight are the iTags, the brand’s connected displays. With just a few clicks on an iPad built into the display, the customer can browse watch models. When they make a choice, the watches, on a pivoting support, are instantly lit up on the display. Customers can also transfer their selection to a mobile device, allowing them to extend their experience outside of the store through linking into My Tag Heuer. American model Bella Hadid and Kabuki actor Shido Nakamura broke open the lid of a sake barrel as part of the traditional opening ceremony for the Tokyo boutique.

DISNEY & ME STORES FORAY INTO INDIA



Disney & Me stores, catering to lovers of Disney, Marvel and Star Wars merchandise, have opened up in India courtesy of DLF Brands. DLF Brands announced the opening of two Disney & Me stores, with one each opening in Noida and Gurugram, through a licensing agreement with Disney Consumer Products in India. The stores are located in Mall of India in Noida and Ambience Mall in Gurugram. Each store features six uniquely designed, dedicated zones, bringing to life the distinctive worlds of the popular franchises, Disney’s Mickey Mouse & Minnie Mouse, Disney Princesses, Frozen, Marvel’s Avengers, Spider-Man and Star Wars. The stores will carry exclusive fashion lines and a range of toys and novelty items for kids between 3 and 12 years of age.

HANOI STUDIO TAKES GREEN APPROACH FOR CAFE

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Hanoi studio Le House has designed An Garden Cafe in the Vietnamese capital as a relaxing space featuring greenery, trees and a pond. Situated in the newly redeveloped Van Quan urban area, part of Hanoi’s densely populated Ha Dong district, the building features a structural framework and an angular concrete shelf that encloses a large glazed façade facing the street. The windows are interspersed with steel frames that resemble spreading tree branches. These shapes provide the first hint of the cafe’s natural theme, which is intended to soften the otherwise robust and industrial aesthetic of the architecture. Several layers feature in the cafe, but the ground floor provides the greatest amount of space for open seating.

ICONSIAM UNVEILS NEW ‘SOOKSIAM’ RETAIL FORMAT



ICONSIAM, the spectacular Bht 54bn riverside landmark development that’s readying to open at the end of this year, has announced a new Bht 700M attraction that aims to draw 21.9 million visitors annually, as well as introduce a new retail concept called ‘co-creation’. Mrs. Chadatip Chutrakul, a Director of ICONSIAM Co., Ltd., and Chief Executive Officer of Siam Piwat Co., Ltd. said: “We have dedicated almost the entire ground floor of 15,000sq m at ICONSIAM to an extraordinary new feature called ‘SookSiam’, where we will present the best products, services and artistic creations from Thailand’s 77 provinces in a single exciting destination and in a dramatic, new ‘co-creation’ format that is immersive, emotional, and entertaining.” SookSiam has been conceived as a place that will present the cultural heritage of all the four main geographic regions of Thailand, capturing their arts, handicrafts, performing arts, and local wisdom. Within SookSiam are outlets of varying types that are built in the style of their respective regions, and which offer regional specialties, whether they be crafts, foods, beverages, or services that are unique to that region. Each of the four regions, including their art installations, are constructed by local builders, artisans, and painters who came from the particular region, as well as by more than 200 artists. ICONSIAM is opening in the last quarter of 2018 and all the rentable space is being transferred with internal decorations also started by many of the retailers. Co-creators at SookSiam will benefit from an exceptional new retail ecosystem that has been developed and which offers a boundaryless offline and online experience for visitors. Sooksiam will be rolled out at the opening of ICONSIAM.