Whether you are are already planning your next holiday, or are just in the mood for some travel inspiration, we have rounded up the top five chicest cities in Asia and the Middle East.
These cities are worldwide renowned for their designers who are responsible for some of the most beautiful and cutting-edge designs from streetwear fashion to catwalk couture. Meanwhile, the residents of these locales flaunt their personal styles in incredible and unique ways.
If you are a fashion lover, browsing through these majorly chic cities should be a “must” on your travel bucket list.
Helen Lee, Christine Lau, and Masha Ma all hail from Shanghai, so it isn’t surprising that Shanghai continually ranks as one of the most fashionable cities in the world.
While fashion is China’s most prominent e-commerce category, the streets of Shanghai — specifically, the grandiose Bund — are lined with luxury designers, magnificent shopping malls, department stores, and boutiques.
While you are there, make sure to browse on Nanjing West Road, which is said to have been the first shopping street in China, and in Shanghai Yong’an Department Store, one of the country’s first department stores to carry global brands.
Major shopping destinations in Shanghai include: The Bund (luxury brands), Huaihai Road Market, Nanjing East Road (more than 600 shops), Nanjing West Road, Shanghai Silk Building, Yuyuan Bazaar (traditional Chinese items), and Shanghai Yatai Clothing and Gifts Market (one of the largest subway markets).
You probably already know that Tokyo is like no other city when it comes to style. Around the world, people look to the Japanese capital for intriguing (and oftentimes shocking) street style.
Combining every style and subculture imaginable, the streets of Tokyo are overflowing with inspiration for the fashion lover. Their most famous designers, Commes des Garcons, Rei Kawabuku, Issey Miyake, and Yoji Yamamoto, always create avant-garde designs that never fail to get people talking.
Major shopping destinations in Tokyo include: Shibuya (where all the high-end fashion stores are), Koenji (vintage lovers paradise), Harajuku (home to the famed Harajuku girls), Ayoama (high fashion), and Shimokitazawa (also an area for vintage).
Seoul, South Korea
Seoul Fashion Week is held twice a year and is split into three parts to showcase Seoul’s high fashion, upcoming designers, and Korean fashion companies. Designers such as D.Gnak and Wooyoungmi beautifully twist the rules and norms of Western fashion to create something fresh and exciting.
Fast-paced and high-tech, Seoul and the people of the city are fast becoming fashion icons in their own right.
Major shopping destinations in Seoul include: Koon with a View, Starfield Coex Mall, Times Square Mall, Namdaemun Market, Dongdaemun Market, Common Ground, Kwangjang Market
As the fashion capital of the Middle East, Dubai has a reputation as a luxury fashion hub. One only has to slightly peruse Harper’s Bazaar Arabia Best Dressed list to see the level of chicness that exists in this city. If you are around in December and January, you will be able to experience the Dubai Shopping Festival! For fashion lovers, a trip to The Dubai Mall, the largest retail shopping center by total area in the world, is a must on the travel bucket-list.
Major shopping destinations in Dubai include: Mall of the Emirates, souqs (Middle Eastern-style bazaars), Souq Madinat Jumeirah (beautiful “Old Arabian” styled shopping center), Amzaan (chic boutique owned by a princess), Five Green, Ginger&Lace, and S*ce
Given the fact that Singapore is home to the most millionaires per capita in the world, it isn’t hard to imagine the level of luxury that exists here. Benny Ong is probably the most famous Singaporean designer, as the late Princess Diana, Queen Noor of Jordan and the Duchess of Kent all wore his elegant designs. But other designers such as Priscilla Shunmugam, Jo Soh, Hayden NG, Carolyn Kan, and Chelsea Scott-Blackhall are all incredibly well-respected throughout the fashion industry. Revasseur by Gilda Su is one of Singapore’s hottest (and most whimsical) new designers.
Major shopping destinations in Singapore include: Orchard Road (2.2km stretch of megamalls), Chinatown Street Market, VivoCity (largest mall in Singapore), Haji Lane (hipster-haven), The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands (luxury shopping mall with spectacular architecture), Little India (Serangoon Road), Mustafa Center (24-hour cheap mall), and Bugis Street Market (800 stalls under one roof).
There you have it! The five chicest cities in Asia and the Middle East for fashion lovers. This shouldn’t read as a comprehensive list, as there are many other locales whose residents and designers have their own one-of-a-kind style. But for now, these cities are redefining fashion in this area of the world.
Ethiopian-born and Dubai-based fashion designer Feiruza Mudessir discovered her curiosity to mix the traditional with contemporary at a young age, and this has become the trademark of her designs today. When you slip into one of Feiruza’s creations, you can almost hear the rhythms of Africa, the beats of India and the vibrancy of Dubai – this distinctive and colourful mélange is just what Finchitua is about.