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Quirky charm of Haji Lane

Haji Lane is a quieter, cooler place to shop than Orchard Road in Singapore.

Glitzy shopping malls, sky-high building, designer boutiques, huge high street stores - that was the only side of Singapore I knew until December'13. In my so many visits to the city, I frittered away so many listless hours at the sprawling shopping malls rummaging through the same old same old stores I rummage through in every part of the world. Topped to that, the endless miles you have to walk to reach from one side of the mall to the other (even in the pre-ION days) takes so much time in Spore that you can barely manage to go anyplace else. No kidding (I  can always feel my calves toned up from all that walking I do in the few days I spend in Singapore).

But {saturatingly-}tired of visiting the same malls and same stores in every part of the world, this time around I decided to explore the other side of Singapore. Ah, and I'm so glad I moved beyond Orchard as it led me to the discovery of the epicenter of quirky Singapore - the famous Haji Lane. Tucked in the quiet backstreet of the Arab district, the first look at the art-deco-nouveau-hybrid colourful Haji Lane left me in awe.

The cool graffiti welcomes you to one long stretch of road with shop-houses neatly assembled next to each. This hip retail stretch is a great place to find upcoming local designers as well as other designers from Asia (Korea, Hong Kong, Thailand, etc) and beyond retailing beautiful clothes, jewelry, accessories, home decor, even furniture and other nick-nack. You'd be surprised to find amazing things at high street prices but much better quality and design.

HL had the most charming and creative store displays I've ever come across; mysterious flights of stairs that'll take you to the new world; neatly and quirk-ishly displayed clothes, jewelry and accessories; brimming creativity to let the creative juices inside me flow - just what I needed to sign off my 2013 with.

It's a treasure hunt cum eye candy. While walking around the street, I was literally clicking pictures of everything around me - the street walls, window displays, the stairs, store inside display. Everything at the HL seemed like a piece of art.

SSFW {yah the store called itself Spring Summer Fall Winter}at HL had this beautifully decorated wall with their jewelry displayed on it, isn't that cool? They had some really gorgeous jewelry, clothes and accessories.

Next we popped into Salad Shop {no its not a eatery but a store}a white washed space that houses a range of home decor and accessories from homegrown and international labels. Loved their beautiful dinnerware with intricately carved porcelain, pretty glassware and beautiful flowers. Besides homeware, this two storied store also had a good selection of clothing, jewelry and quirky postcards.

The Salad Shop

This particular Korean store was one of my favourites {I can't remember the store's name} with pretty funky and interesting casual wear for men and interesting sock display on their wall. Think infusion of polka dot at the top of the pocket on tshirts, interesting prints cleverly used in shirts, cool printed socks - a refreshing change from the same old same old in menswear. SUP was another men's store that's a must visit.

Quirky wall art and display at Mod Parade. Also pay a visit to the little upmarket Soon Lee for their chic collection of international and local labels like Aijek (Singaporean), Poem (Thai), Merleni (Australian), their gorgeous jewelry {check out local label Hadasity, ICING Accessories} and other pretty home nick-nacks.

It was a Sunday afternoon spent well

Even those non-shoppers accompanying you would fall for this place for the sheer beauty and attention to details the stores pay to.  I mean if other stores had such interesting displays, there wouldn't be any non-shoppers.

Clothes, shoes, bags, jewelry (my favourite pick from Haji Lane would be their jewelry), home decor, men's wear it had everything to take care of your shopping itch or shopping SOS.

An all-in-one art gallery, cafe, bar, restaurant and furniture complex A Thousand Tales was another interesting twist at the lane, reminding all those interesting things I read about how HJ is full of surprises.

That's my version of Haji Lane, but I was told the place also has some really interesting bars, cafes and restaurants for the food aficionados {which I didn't get a chance to explore} - from the most unusual & tempting options like home made ice creams in green tea with red beans or cashew infused yogurt flavours (at Pluck) to the basics {Asian tofu salads at Going Om for vegans}.

I was completely sold by it and I think no visit to Singapore would be complete without the quintessential experience of a stroll down the Haji Lane.

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  1. Those are some amazing clicks hun...I would def visit Haji lane if I ever get a chance to visit S'pore..Loved the post :) <3

  2. Wow...Seems like amazing place !!!!!!!!!!!!!

  3. such a hidden treasure, will check it out on my next trip ! Love ur green dress :)

  4. I feel like I was there! Thanks for sharing. Btw, I love the dress on you :)


  5. omg! what a beautiful place! you look great :)
    i am your new follower now :)


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