Unless you’ve been hibernating recently, you’ve probably experienced Suzhou’s unseasonably rainy and cold start to spring. While it’ easy to give in and let the wet weather ruin your plans, Suzhou’s only international-style shopping mall allows you to have fun while you stay dry!
INCITY Plaza, located on Modern Avenue and near the Customs Building in the Suzhou Industrial Park, has five floors and 140,000 square metres of retail space. Unlike the multitude of department stores that Suzhou boasts, INCITY is home to dozens of Western name brands, whose stores are large and independent from one another. If you’re looking for a great place to shop, dine, or entertain yourself and your friends, INCITY offers an excellent range of choice.
Completed in September last year, INCITY is the first high-quality shopping mall to open its doors in Suzhou. In addition to its large floor space, it is the most western-oriented shopping centre in Suzhou, with a large chunk of its 150 tenants coming from outside of the mainland. In fact, INCITY is the only place in Suzhou to offer Zara, H&M, Best Buy and Walmart. The mall is clearly popular with SIP (Suzhou Industrial Park) residents; traffic jams are frequent on weekends as hundreds of patrons rush to enjoy the numerous shopping and dining options.
The basement floor of INCITY serves as a convenient one-stop-shop for SIP households. Here visitors can pay their mobile and home phone bills, bank at an ATM, get remedies at a pharmacy, and pick up daily necessities at Walmart. While a bit more expensive than local favourites Auchan and Bairunfa, Walmart customers are rewarded with an amazingly low-stress shopping experience where one needn’t constantly bump elbows with other shoppers.
The first and second floors of INCITY are dedicated to clothing, health and beauty, and fast food. Suzhou’s only Burger King located west of Jinji Lake can be found here, in addition to Starbucks, KFC, and Subway. The clothing brands are mostly foreign, with prices and selection that trump those of department stores. Dickies, Quicksilver, and Levi’s provide a familiar shopping experience to expatriates.
The third floor of INCITY is family-oriented with children’s clothing, accessories, and toys. An arcade and cinema round out the entertainment options here. Golden Harvest currently offers Alice in Wonderland in 3D, which is shown in English with Chinese subtitles. While pricier than theatres located downtown at around 90 RMB a seat, the theatre is brand-new and you won’t need to wait in line long to get your ticket. Muji, a Japanese “IKEA-meets-Gap” clothing and home products store, is one of many third-floor lifestyle shops that offer the kind of home products not often found in the Industrial Park.
The fourth floor is always buzzing with activity. The newly opened Best Buy is a great alternative to the jam-packed, labyrinthine electronics stores around Guan Qian Street. Grandma’s Kitchen (Waipojia), an incredibly inexpensive Hangzhounese eatery, gives out waiting numbers that go into the hundreds on any given weekend. Singaporean, Italian, Japanese Teppanyaki, Sichuanese and hot pot restaurants provide a variety of options for any appetite. You’ll also find a spa, hair salon and gym on the top floor.
Not content with simply filling space with a multitude of brands and their stores, INCITY provides other services to patrons. Free lunchtime shuttles run from 11:15 to 1:15 on weekdays. Catch a bus to or from International Square, the Science and Software Park, or Singa Plaza. If you have your own car, a five-story parking deck with 1,000 spaces awaits you. The area around the mall abounds with beautiful landscaping and benches. Restaurants like Lizarran and Visto feature quiet outdoor patios for dining. Unfortunately, some of the space previously set aside as a square has been converted into overflow parking. INCITY often hosts events such as car and product shows. This May 9 and 15 will bring a “Fun Family Season”, complete with mother and child fashion shows and prizes. Additionally, the mall is working on a gift card program that it hopes to roll out by the end of the summer.
No matter if the bad weather is keeping you inside too much, or if you’re looking to shop and dine at familiar shops, INCITY offers an abundance of choices. From big names like Sephora, Best Buy, and H&M, to smaller kiosks on the ground floor, the mall has something for everyone. Its location near Central Park is a great alternative for SIP residents who aren’t eager to go downtown or east of the lake. INCITY is an oasis of Western shopping brands and restaurants, all under one roof.
INCITY Plaza 格瑞印象城View In Map
Add: Suzhou INCITY Plaza, 1699 Modern Avenue, Suzhou Industrial Park
Opening hours: 7:30 to 22:00
Getting there: By bus: 68 bus to xingming jie bei, walk one block west on Modern Avenue; 2, 26, 518 and other buses direct to INCITY.
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It’s the same everywhere (esp. in these big malls). Even if something is actually produced here in China but has a foreign logo on it, it still easily costs 2 or 3 x what youd pay in your home country (Nike is a good example - - although many Nike shoes are now made in Vietnam or some other SE Asian country). Sure, there is a small percentage of the Chinese population who have made it and now seem to have money to burn, but that scenario isnt wide-spread amidst the masses. I dont know how most of these shops and restaurants stay in business. I do a Burger King or a movie maybe once a month and I rarely buy clothing or other such things here in China.
Nov 21, 2010 17:41 Report Abuse
I refuse to pay more than what someone in the UK would pay. Salaries in the UK are way higher than in China. The restaurants in Incity are great, the cinema is amazing. There is plenty to do there apart from shopping. Great place to hang out with your kids.
May 08, 2010 16:38 Report Abuse
It is nice having a new shopping mall near my house and I thought it would be nice having all these new shops from the UK there as I am from the UK. When I first visited these shops and saw the prices, I was shocked. They are all charging way more than what people pay for the items in the UK. I dont shop there very often
May 08, 2010 16:35 Report Abuse