It seems that the piece of land at the intersection of Wireless Road and the Ploenchit intersection will have Bangkok’s latest massive shopping mall built on it. Called Central Embassy, it’s going to be another Bangkok mega-mall — this one with eight floors of retail space and a large hotel. The mall will be called Central Embassy as it’s being built in the same location where the old British Embassy used to be. All I can say is, really, does Bangkok honestly need yet one more mega-mall?
Now, don’t get me wrong. I love shopping malls in Thailand and, as the Central department store malls are some of my most favorite in Bangkok. I’m sure Central Embassy will be a beautiful mall. It’s slated to open towards the end of 2013 and, as Thais really are amazing at designing shopping malls, it will probably be beautiful.
But…..Bangkok already has more than 150 shopping malls,either already built or soon to be completed, all of which upon opening have helped close down small independent stores located nearby. Why? Simply because a small mom and pop store can’t compete with the larger stores for either variety of products or low price.
Of course, I understand the love affair Thais have with shopping malls and, yes, love affair it definitely is. After all, Bangkok is the world’s hottest city so, on a scorching hot day, there’s nothing nicer than wandering around an air-conditioned mall. But, as more and more shopping malls like Central Embassy open in Bangkok, traditional Thai culture and the traditional Thai way of shopping will be lost just a little bit more. And that is very sad.
As for Central Embassy shopping mall, it will probably be another high-end shopping mall in the vein of Siam Paragon or Gaysorn Plaza. That’s because it will be surrounded by the affluent areas of Sathorn, Sukhumvit and Silom, homes to some of Bangkok’s richest people, and that’s who Central Embassy will be catering to.
When Central Embassy opens, of course, I’ll check it out. But if it’s nothing more than yet another high-end shopping mall in Bangkok with the same chain stores, same restaurant chains and same opportunities to shop, I’ll likely continue my usual shopping closer to home.
Meanwhile, if you want to see what Central Embassy is going to look like and how unusual of a design it seems to have (it really does look beautiful), look at the photo above and then check the Central Embassy website for a lot more information.
As for other places to shop in Bangkok while Central Embassy is being built, don’t forget to check out these three best Bangkok shopping malls.