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Hong Kong is the perfect place for an obsessive shopper, especially when it comes to designer outlet shopping. Here’s my experience, and a guide to the best outlet stores and factory outlet locations.
Hong Kong outlet stores
If you’re in Hong Kong, and designer bargains are on your mind, how can you not want to shop? Hong Kong is like crack for shopaholics. Many designers have their clothes made in China and factory outlets are where overruns, excess stock and seconds go to die.
When I used to teach English in Korea, I’d make regular pilgrimages here to outlets like the Kaiser Estates for deals on Armani and Anne Klein, and there was no better cure for travel burnout. But you have to keep up with the times. These days, old favourites like the Kaiser Estates and the Pedder Building have been trumped by newer, shinier places, though some old standbys still remain.
On my last trip to Hong Kong, I received an updated version of what’s new on the Hong Kong factory outlet scene and where to find designer discounts, and now I’m sharing my experience with you.
Preplanning is essential when outlet shopping in Hong Kong
Since factory outlets in Hong Kong are spread far and wide, preplanning is necessary. So, armed with a list of Hong Kong shopping factory outlets, I showed it to the concierge at my hotel, the Island Shangri-la Hong Kong.
Tactfully, he advised me to refresh my itinerary, suggesting Horizon Plaza and the Prada Miu Miu Outlet (formerly called Space Warehouse) in the area of Aberdeen.
For a minute I brushed him aside. I didn’t want to go to Aberdeen. On the south shore of the island, it’s an area known for its floating seafood restaurants and picturesque fishing boats. The only cheap shopping I knew of in the south was Stanley Market, better for souvenirs and bargain T-shirts than high-end designer goods. And it was a good distance away.
An expert’s advice
The concierge read me like a shopping flyer. “The Prada outlet,” he repeated.
Why didn’t he say so before? Or maybe he had and I just hadn’t been listening. Grabbing the mimeographed map he was offering me, I tore out the door shouting, “Taxi!”
The driver took me to a fairly modern building in a residential area. Where the heck am I, I wondered? I strode up the steps and landed in a dentist’s office.
Backtracking I found a discreet sign for Prada and Miu Miu with an arrow pointing around the corner. From the smattering of chic Asian couples going inside, I knew I’d found the right place.
I’ve never met a Prada outlet I didn’t like
“Prices are 20% cheaper here than in regular Prada stores,” I heard a salesman tell a customer.
Even that would be stretching my wallet, but surely one splurge could be excused. After all, it’s an investment, I told myself. I’ll probably be able to resell it in a few years for a profit. And that’s only the regular prices. I was after an even bigger deal.
I aimed for the purses and stopped to caress the soft leather of a amber-coloured purse. It fit under my arm nicely and the logo was tasteful rather than in-your-face. Was it a love match? I wasn’t sure.
And here lies the dilemma of shopping at Hong Kong outlet stores for designer discounts. If I didn’t buy it now, it would be out of my hands forever. I’d never have time to make it back to the Prada Miu Miu outlet as it’s not exactly near my hotel.
But. If I bought it and found something I liked better down the road it would be a costly mistake. Gambling on cheaper bargains elsewhere, I moved on.
Horizon Plaza Hong Kong
A five-minute cab ride from the Prada Miu Miu Outlet took me to Horizon Plaza, a huge warehouse complex. Since the Prada outlet is close to Horizon Plaza, if you’re going to visit one, you might as well visit both.
The Horizon Plaza is in Ap Lei Chau, an island off the south of Hong Kong, and is known for its discount designer fashions as well as furniture stores.
This spacious collection of factory outlet shops is located in a converted warehouse building, and its 25 floors hold almost 100 shops. These include the Ermenegildo Zegna Outlet Store, which is a high-end men’s clothing store from Italy; the I.T. Outlet, a trendy fashion boutique that sells a number of international brands at discounts; Saint Laurent; Ralph Laurent; Max Mara; the Swank Outlet and so many more.
On the 25th floor at Lane Crawford, Hong Kong’s answer to Saks Fifth Avenue, I scooped up a tiered cream skirt for $10. It’s was a dream bargain, but only an appetizer, a warm up for bigger and better deals to come. At least that’s what I hoped.
Methodically I shopped through each outlet but even a trim green jacket at the popular Joyce Warehouse wasn’t as tempting as the amber-coloured Prada bag I’d left behind.
Designer outlet shopping is exhausting
Several hours later, my legs were aching and my vision was blurred. Too tired to continue, I took a cab back to my hotel for some much-needed downtime.
We were almost at the hotel when I spotted the Pedder Building, a pre-war colonial structure from 1923. One of my old outlet haunts, it used to house several floors of small outlet shops above the (non-outlet) Shanghai Tang department store.
“Stop!” I shouted.
It was nearly closing time so I raced inside and rifled through racks. A Burberry-style jacket with ¾ length sleeves and a cut out label almost won me over, but I knew it wasn’t me. While the Pedder Building has few bargains these days, it’s central location and still fun to rifle through the boutiques.
“This is like a treasure hunt,” an American girl said as we trooped down the stairwell in tandem.
The hunt for factory outlet bargains
Outlet shopping in Hong Kong is a lot more fun if you find treasure, though. And I wasn’t having much luck.
I began to have visions of that Prada handbag back at the Prada Outlet. As I faced the prospect of leaving Hong Kong with only one measly cream skirt, the Prada bag I’d left behind began to assume mythic proportions. With sudden clarity I saw how my life would change for the better with a chic Prada handbag.
In desperation, I phoned the Prada Miu Miu Outlet back in Aberdeen. If they opened early enough the next day, I could get there before my mid-morning flight.
“Sorry, we open at 10,” said the salesman.
Foiled! Back at the Shangri-la, I soaked out my dejection in the outdoor Jacuzzi. Surrounded by gleaming high rises and city lights, I perked up.
Even if I was leaving without a suitcase of designer bargains, Hong Kong is still a fantastic place to shop. Plus, if I got to the airport early enough I’d have time to go to the Citygate Outlet Mall nearby. And, if all else failed, there was always duty free.
Hong Kong Designer Outlet Shopping Guide
Outlets in Hong Kong tend to be more like vertical high rises than sprawling malls and often house a mix of regularly-priced stores and outlets. Avoid lengthy waits for the lift by starting at the top of the building and working down.
Prada Miu Miu Outlet at South Horizons
It’s a small designer discount shop, with more women’s wear than men’s, but if a Prada bag is calling your name, it’s worth the stop. 2/F Marina Square, East Commercial Block, South Horizons, Aberdeen.
How do you get to the Prada Miu Miu Outlet? The Prada Miu Miu Outlet, formerly Space Warehouse, can be reached by taking the South Island Line on the MRT to the SouthHorizons MTR station. I took a cab, but apparently if you take Exit A from the station, it’s should be on your left. Others have said take Exit N.
News flash! There is now a second Prada Outlet in Hong Kong
This one is located at the Florentia Village at Kwai Hing Too. Unit 8, 1st Floor, Florentina Village, Hong Kong, KC100, No. 100 Kawi Cheong Road, Kwai Chung, New Territories, Hong Kong.
Take the MTR to the Kwai Hing MTR Station, and take Exit E.
Florentia Village Luxury Designer Outlet at Kwai Hing
The newest factory outlet Hong Kong mall is Florentia Village. Yes, I’m excited about it, too. With Balenciaga (I heart Balenciaga), Versace, a Nike factory outlet, an Armani Outlet, Ferragamo, Lane Crawford, I.T. Outlet, Kenzo, Sunglass Hut and Furla, it sounds promising.
With Florentia Village locations already in 5 other Chinese cities, they must know what they’re doing. Most reports so far say that the Hong Kong location is hit or miss, and that the Prada Outlet is the main reason to go. The good news is that apparently there is a bigger selection here than at the Prada Miu Miu Outlet in Ap Lei Chau.
For us designer discount outlet fans, the hopes are that more stores move in and it will become a prime discount shopping destination for luxury brands.
Where is the Florentia Village in Hong Kong? It’s at No. 100, Kwai Cheong Road, Kwai Chung, New Territories, Hong Kong.
How do you get there? Take the MTR to Kwai Hing Station and take Exit E. It’s a bit of a hike from there, and since I haven’t yet been, I’m giving you directions I found online. You go over the bridge, down an escalator and out to the street, where it’s on your right hand side.
Visit the Florentia Village Hong Kong website for more info.
Horizon Plaza has 25 floors of furniture and clothing outlets, making it one of the biggest HK outlet mall there is, second only to Citygate. Horizon Plaza is located at 2 Lee Wing Street, Ap Lei Chau, Hong Kong Island.
Tip: Don’t miss Joyce Warehouse 21/F and Lane Crawford 25/F. New to Horizon Plaza is the Outlet by Club 21 at Unit 12 19/F with women’s, men’s and kid’s apparel by a number of different brand names.
How do you get to Horizon Plaza? You can take the MTR to the South Horizons Station. Take Exit C and walk along Lee Nam Road for about 15 minutes.
Check out the Horizon Plaza Hong Kong website for more information.
A long-running standby, which has lost much of its superpower factory outlet lustre, it’s an industrial-looking group of warehouses on Man Yue St, Hung Hom, Kowloon, and has a number of jewelry outlet stores.
While it’s not as popular as it was, and it wouldn’t be my first choice for outlet shopping in Hong Kong, they do have an Adidas Factory Outlet at 1 F, Unit J, Phase 11, Kaiser Estate, 51 Man Yue Street, Hung Hom, Kowloon (though I’ve heard the Adidas Factory Outlet at Citygate Hong Kong is better).
There is also a Diane Freis outlet store for cashmere at 4 F, Unit B, Phase I, 41 Man Yue St.
How do you get to Kaiser Estates? You can take the MTR to Hung Hom Station. It’s a 20-minute walk from there.
Citygate Outlet has really taken over as the preeminent Hong Kong outlet mall. Near the airport on Lantau Island it has a variety of mass market and designer brands.
For sportswear and running shoes, you’ll find an Adidas Factory Outlet, a Nike Factory Outlet, the Sketchers Outlet, Puma, New Balance and the Italian footwear brand Geox.
For men’s and women’s designer discounts, you’ll be spoiled for choice with Burberry, Hugo Boss, Bally, Coach, Diane von Furstenberg (I want another wrap dress at a discounted price!) and a Brooks Brothers Outlet, to name a very few.
If you’re looking for more affordable Hong Kong outlet stores, you could cruise through shops like Aldo, Crocs and Guess.
Also sometimes referred to as the Tung Chung Outlet, Citygate Outlets is located at 20 Tat Tung Rd, Tung Chung.
How do you get to Citygate Outlet Mall from central Hong Kong?
To get to the Citygate Mall you can take the MTR. Take the Tung Chung line through Interchange from Hong Kong Station, Nam Cheong Station or Lai King Station. The nearest MTR station is Tung Chung Station. Go out Exit C and you should see the mall entrance.
Visit their website for more information.
How do you get from the Hong Kong International Airport to Citygate Outlet?
If you’re like me, you’ll want to shop until the last minute. If you get to the airport early you can take the S1 or S64 bus to City Gate. It should take about 10 minutes. Alternatively, take a cab.
Stay the night at Citygate
If you are taking a flight out of Hong Kong, and you want to squeeze in some shopping, you can always stay at the Novotel CityGate Hong Kong Hotel, which is connected to the outlet mall.
Visit the Citygate outlet website for more information.
The good thing about the Pedder Building is that it’s right downtown at 12 Pedder Street, Central. The bad thing is that you probably won’t find any bargains. Tramping up and down the staircase and poking your nose into the boutiques, which apparently are no longer actual factory outlet stores, is still enjoyable.
Oddly enough, there is a Pedder Warehouse Outlet at Citygate Outlet Mall, but I haven’t stopped in so I don’t know if there is a connection between the two.
Where to stay on your factory outlet Hong Kong shopping trip
The Island Shangri-la Hong Kong offers a deluxe respite from frenetic shopping, but if you must shop, it’s connected to the Pacific Place Mall.
I also love the InterContinental Hong Kong for its central location on the waterfront.
On a budget? When I’m trying to save money my favourite place to stay in Hong Kong is, believe it or not, the Salisbury YMCA Hong Kong. It’s got a 5-star location right by the Peninsula Hotel on Victoria Harbour. The money you save means more designer outlet shopping in Hong Kong for you. Personally, I consider the Salisbury Y the best deal in Hong Kong, but book early because a lot of other bargain hunters think so, too.
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Want more travel tips on Hong Kong? Do you want to learn how to buy jade? Check out this Buying jade in Hong Kong article!
Read more about luxury travel in Asia