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Thread: 'Youth Triangle' malls not so hip among teens

  1. #1
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    Default 'Youth Triangle' malls not so hip among teens


    November 10, 2009 Tuesday

    [B][SIZE="5"]'Youth Triangle' malls not so hip among teens[/SIZE][/B]

    [B]Plaza Singapura and VivoCity displace Heeren and Cathay Cineleisure as the places to be seen[/B]

    By Eisen Teo

    ORCHARD Road's long-time 'Youth Triangle' - The Heeren, Cathay Cineleisure Orchard and *Scape Youth Park - is fading.

    Mall rats are leaving the area for the new top three - Plaza Singapura, VivoCity and Suntec City - with Ion Orchard and Orchard Central, which opened in July, taking fourth and fifth places, respectively.

    A survey of about 1,000 youths has found these malls to be their favourites in terms of affordable shops and entertainment outlets. They are also places to see and be seen.

    The Straits Times poll, executed by online entertainment company Sulake, involved 974 respondents, mostly between the ages of 12 and 18. They completed the survey at youth networking site Habbo Hotel, where each was required to log in with unique identities to prevent duplication.

    Eight in 10 respondents went to malls at least once a week; one in 10 did so daily.

    Many praised Plaza Singapura for its 'one-stop convenience' - it has a cinema complex, restaurants and value-for-money apparel.

    For mall addict Richie Liaw, 15, a Secondary 3 student from Punggol Secondary, Plaza Singapura is a second home.

    He studies at its ground-floor Starbucks almost every day - though books do not always take priority. 'I like watching girls go by, and there are many pretty ones around this part of town,' he said.

    Runner-up VivoCity, which opened in 2006, attracts a following for its vast sky garden and reasonably priced outlets.

    The malls' representatives say youth- oriented events are key to keeping them interested.

    Plaza Singapura's marketing communications team stages concerts, among other things, said mall manager CapitaLand Retail. VivoCity even uses social networking site Facebook to publicise events, said its general manager Chang Yeng Cheong.

    Still, new malls Ion Orchard and Orchard Central are gaining ground for three reasons: location, location, location.

    Muhammad Ruslan, 14, dubs Ion Orchard 'the hottest new place in town'.

    Other than the new shops, the Sec 2 student from Manjusri Secondary likes that the mall is linked to the Orchard MRT station. He and his peers are bored by Cineleisure and The Heeren, he said.

    In the poll, Cathay Cineleisure came in 10th, while The Heeren failed to make the cut at all. Once dubbed the 'Youth Triangle' with *Scape Youth Park in a 2003 Sunday Times report, these two malls must reinvent themselves to recapture audiences.

    Cathay Organisation, which owns Cineleisure, is lining up a series of youth-oriented activities for its 75th anniversary next year, while The Heeren, which will emerge from its renovation later this month, aims to appeal to young adults in their 20s and early 30s.

    Capturing the youth market is key for mall operators because they have a more recession-proof disposable income, and may also grow up to be part of a loyal fan base, said Singapore Retailers Association president Jannie Tay.

    Mall operators face tough competition, she said. 'Retail space in Orchard Road alone has doubled in the last 12 months... More malls will open in the next 12, together with the integrated resorts. So is there excessive retail space? Yes.'

    Reaching out to youths will be key to keeping up business.

    Otherwise, as Ion Orchard regular Lynn Yang, 16, from Chung Cheng High (Yishun), said: 'I might as well just stay home and shop online.'

    [email][email protected][/email]

    Additional reporting by Eunice Ng
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  2. #2

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    I like Vivo, big and spacious.

  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by august
    I like Vivo, big and spacious.
    Yah mann ... Vivo is good .. v diff feel as compared to ION

    Like its PageOne > Prologue ....

  4. #4
    ex-Mcfarlene fan

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    vivo the best! lots of space to walk around, not crammed and nice view of the future theme park.

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by shespawn
    vivo the best! lots of space to walk around, not crammed and nice view of the future theme park.
    It is designed by Toyo Ito. You know Botanic Garden was also maintained by Japanese last time (according to LKY) ... because they have a sense of beauty. If Esplanade is designed by him, it could be totally different.

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