Bangkok has always been known as a shopper's paradise but over the last ten years or so, Bangkok has become more of a shopping Mecca with bigger and more luxurious shopping malls and departments stores opening on a regular basis.
Much of this is to do with Thais having more money and therefore being able to buy imported goods, but with Russia and China joining the tourist crowds, there are more tourists to spend their money.
There are many Bangkok Shopping Malls and Bangkok Department Stores what you wish to buy should determine where you should do your shopping. If you are after high end brand names in ladies' / men's fashion, expensive jewelry and other such items, then you should consider Siam Paragon which should easily meet your needs in either the Paragon Department store or at the shops contained within the mall. Siam Paragon is very high end and you'll pay for it too.
Alternatively, you could try The Emporium. The other malls don't offer the same high end brand names in separate shops within the mall although they might offer stalls for expensive watches or jewelry.
There are a good number of shopping malls in Bangkok all with roughly the same types of brands to choose from although some are bigger and more luxurious than others. However, if you are coming to Bangkok to do some shopping and are after some special items of interest to ship home, you might not want to try the shopping malls or department stores as much of what they have to offer is imported anyway and the prices are simialr to those found at home with exception of the VAT rate which is 7% in Thailand.
Central Chidlom department store is Central's flagship store and is located opposite the entrance to Langsuan and at Chidlom BTS station.
Central Chidlom is primarily a department store with an excellent range of clothing for men, women and children as well as a very good supermarket with many imported meats, cheeses, wines and other goods.
There are a few shops separate from the department store but these are mainly opticians, skin care shops and salons.
On the top floor of Central there is a good book store, stationary section and a place to send parcels via regular and registered mail. There is a food court where youenjoy food from various countries including: Chinese, Vietnamese, Thai, Indian and Italian.
The Emporium is one of the first luxury shopping complexes in Bangkok. It comprises the Emporium department store and then individual shops in the surrounding area.
The Emporium is also an office block and executive serviced apartments which is easy to get to via the BTS skytrain system. Just get off at Prom Phong.
The Emporium caters to more high-end stores which offer men and women's fashions & accessories, electrical goods, mobile phones, books and more.
With so many shopping malls in Bangkok and department stores in Bangkok it's not easy to know which one(s) to go to.
All we can suggest is that if you are looking for cheaper, non-brand named fashions, as well as looking for deals on digital cameras, MP3 players and even the odd DVD or game, then you have to head for MBK.
The other department stores mentioned here all sell authentic, brand named items, but having said that, you can also get good deals on authentic, off-the-pag fashions for both men and women. Central is particularly good for this although most department stores have discounts either through various sales or via a department discount card which can offer 5 - 10% off all purchases. You can, in most cases, also claim a VAT refund but you'll need to take along your passport and fill out some forms etc.
MBK or Mahboonkrong is a hugely popular shopping mall in Bangkok. It is a favourite with locals and tourists alike.
MBK is made up of 6 floors of various shops and stalls selling almost everything and anything including optical, fashions, cameras, mobile phones, mp3 players, shoes, furniture, DVDs, Computer games and software as well as many other items.
MBK is THE place to go for mobile phonesand has some of the best camera shops in Bangkok selling digital cameras ranging from small point and shoot to professional cameras.
There are plenty of places to eat at MBK including a food court where there is a good selection and variety of foods.
The top floor has a multi-cinecomplex, restaurants, coffee shops and more fashions.