More than 80 shopping malls islandwide contribute to the Singaporean retail market, offering 22 million sq ft of retail space - with many future developments in the pipeline. We distinguish three categories of shopping malls in Singapore, according to their location.
Orchard malls, located on the iconic avenue, are the preferred area for high-end luxury brands and large international retailers. With retail floor area ranging from 50,000 sq ft to 600,000 sq ft on average, Orchard's malls account for only a fifth of the island's total available space but offer the highest shopping density in Singapore.
Next, Central malls, located in the CBD and central districts, are on average larger and account for 6,000,000 sq ft of Singapore total retail floor space. With constant new developments, they are a prime alternative to Orchard Road.
Finally, heartland malls are distributed in the periphery of the island. The West, with more retail space than Orchard, is the main shopping area outside of the city centre. Recent trends have confirmed a move from large retailrs to the peripheral areas of Singapore, expanding outside of the Core to cater for the rising populations in HDB towns.
Many shopping centres, both in Central Singapore and in the periphery, are under a strata ownership structure. Among others, such malls include Lucky Plaza and Far East Plaza (both on Orchard Road), Peninsula Plaza (City Hall) and People's Park Centre (Chinatown). They offer affordable units and retail areas, although competition has drive the prices upwards.
From a landlord perspective, strata units therefore offer a strong capital appreciation and a cheaper, simpler way to invest into malls. However, shared ownership has been the reason for managerial issues, as any decision has to be agreed upon by all shareholders.