Siam Piwat brings its popular Thai lifestyle products to new KL mall
By Valaiporn Chalermlapvoraboon
BANGKOK, NNA - Uniquely Thai products and collectibles popular with tourists and locals alike such as exclusive handicrafts, exciting fashion and food will be a big attraction at the new Pavilion Bukit Jalil mall coming up in Malaysia's bustling capital Kuala Lumpur.
To be brought in by Thai retail giant Siam Piwat Co. in partnership with Malaysian counterpart Pavilion Group, the products come under three successful retail houses that Siam Piwat has established at its Bangkok malls to promote high-quality creations of small Thai businesses.
The first is its Ecotopia store which works with local producers to produce appealing eco-friendly products made with recyclable materials.
For example, medical kidney drainage bags, which might seem bizarre, are repurposed as desirable, stylish backpacks, while discarded garments are given a new lease of life as redesigned apparel with captivating features.
The second popular Thai store to have a presence at the Pavilion mall is Iconcraft which promotes traditional, indigenous and creative art and craft items made by craftsmen, designers and local communities from all over Thailand.
Their unique, innovative and colorful products include home décor objects, tableware, fashion, souvenirs, scents as well as food and snacks.
For instance, the well-known Kittakhon brand uses recyclable wastes to produce artistic and contemporary pieces for interior decoration, while the creations of fashion label Ethnica reflect its support of the weaving tradition of ethnic minorities in the Northern region of Thailand.
Another interesting brand is Hatsaya, which uses traditional Benjarong porcelain to produce uniquely Thai jewelry.
Siam Piwat’s third retail business to debut in Malaysia is Absolute Siam, a trendy multi-label fashion store which showcases the creative and imaginative flair of designers and their exclusive collaborations with partners.
Whether they are inspired by ordinary things seen in daily life, old or new lifestyle ideas, the apparel and accessories are usually fun, provocative and even trend-setting.
For instance, the futuristic-looking fashion of the Sculpture brand is mainly inspired by the bold colors and patterns of old-school video games. Another label, One More Thing, fuses contemporary textile with traditional weaves to create new pieces.
This is the first time Siam Piwat is taking its retail concepts to a mall setting abroad. Set to open on Dec. 3, Pavilion Bukit Jalil will be the largest regional lifestyle mall in the southern corridor of Kuala Lumpur.
“Siam Piwat’s three Thai brands are massively popular among foreign tourists,” said Usara Yongpiyakul, CEO of Siam Piwat at a press conference in Bangkok on Oct 7.
“We have selected Pavilion Bukit Jalil to debut our first brick-and-mortar stores in Malaysia for three carefully selected Thai brands in a way that will captivate and resonate with both Malaysian and international visitors,” said Yongpiyakul.
Venturing abroad will also support Thai SMEs, designers and creators in gaining international exposure through new sales channels and platforms, she said.
Joyce Yap, CEO of Kuala Lumpur Pavilion Sdn Bhd, the retail planner for Pavilion Bukit Jalil, said, “Thailand has just as rich and unique a culture as any other country. This uniqueness and richness are shaped by extraordinary creativity and conveyed through a wide range of exquisite artworks and design products that have proven to appeal to people across the globe."
Siam Piwat operates major shopping destinations in Bangkok such as the prestigious Siam Paragon, which is very popular with locals and tourists.
Its Siam Center and Siam Discovery draw the young and trendy, while Icon Siam, an upmarket mall and riverside attraction which opened a few years ago, is set to be a major tourist draw when Thailand reopens fully to visitors.
Siam Piwat plans to promote its products further on international online platforms and in cities with high purchasing power in places like China and Vietnam.
This will support Thai retailers and SMEs in their recovery efforts after they were hit by a drastic drop in business arising from pandemic lockdowns.
In the second quarter of this year, shopping malls in Bangkok city and surrounding areas suffered losses as high as over 70 percent. Six in 10 SMEs (small and medium sized enterprises) have reported declining incomes since the coronavirus outbreak last year.
These statistics were reported by the Thai Retailers Association and Statista.
Malaysia’s retail scene also suffered from lockdowns.
In past decades, the sector contributed significant value to the country’s economic growth, said Jojie Samuel MC Samuel, the Malaysian ambassador to Thailand, at the Oct. 7 press conference. Retail accounted for 20.5 percent of the GDP in 2019.
Malaysia reopened local inter-state as well as international travel on Oct. 11. Thailand is continuing to open to tourists from more countries over the next two months.