Hong Kong’s Harbour City mall exhibits the power of shopping in boosting footfalls

Shopping is a major tourist draw and destinations can leverage it to boost their tourism numbers, and Harbour City mall is the leader in Hong Kong’s foray for the same. Karen Tam, Assistant General Manager – promotions and marketing, Harbour City mall shares how they have successfully capitalized on their vast offerings and created a tourism experience which is difficult to replicate.


A comparison between India and Hong Kong is an unreasonable one, to say the least. With a population of less than eight million, and a GDP of around 300 billion USD, it is a much smaller country in every sense of the term. However, India is yet to have a mall that could give a reasonable competition to Hong Kong’s Harbour City mall. With a location that has the famed Victoria Harbour lending a spectacular multi-million dollar harbour view which is unmatched; The Harbour City mall is the epitome of a shopping destination. Incidentally, the harbour, itself, will complete sixty years of existence.

The scale and grandeur of the mall can be understood from the fact that it spreads across a real-estate of 1,85,000 sq. meters. It houses eleven office towers, dozens of restaurants and hundreds of shops displaying thousands of top-notch brands. Karen Tam said that shopping was very integral to the overall tourism experience in Hong Kong. “As far we are concerned, we are the largest shopping mall, and have the longest history in Hong Kong. There are different clusters that have dedicated products for different segments. For instance, we have beauty products for women in a specific area, boasting of over two hundred different skin care products – a lot of them are Korean brands, and very expensive; a cluster dedicated to children with plethora of products to suit their needs, including the largest toy store in Asia,” she detailed. Adding that besides toy-stores, it housed apparels, books and other products of their interest, she added that “for men, we have shops with top of the line watches and jewellery brands – almost eighty in number which is double compared to our closest competitor mall – clothing and body care products. There are a number of electronic gadget shops, too.”

Besides, shopping, the lure of entertainment and culinary experiences are major draws for this one-of-a-kind mall. “There are sixty different restaurants in the mall, serving a wide-variety of cuisines to suit one’s taste,” she said. The mall has employed some smart marketing strategies that attract the discerning traveller. There are dedicated festivals; for instance, a chocolate festival is celebrated with great gusto – it is a celebration of the Chinese New Year and the Valentine’s Day, put together. “In summer holidays, in July and August, we have events crafted around engaging travellers,” Karen noted.

There are three hotels, in the mall, under the brand name of Marco Polo. “Besides, hotels, eleven office towers help us get regular traffic. We cater to almost a hundred and fifty thousand tourists in a weekday; it can go up to two hundred thousand on the weekend,” she shared.

What makes the mall a huge draw, besides its scale is the pricing which allows travellers from on a budget to the high-spending aficionados to engage in a shopping experience. “From Zara and Wal-Mart to Jimmy Choo, we cater to everyone’s need. In fact, the reason why shopping in Hong Kong is a huge draw, because many of the top brands unveil their finest products here,” Karen elaborated.

“Shopping is the lynch-pin of Hong King’s economy,” she noted. She told us that a lot of tourists spent a major chuck of their money in shopping and dining, so it had huge stakes in Hong Kong’s economy.

There are some concerns, however, with the slow-down in the Chinese economy; Hong Kong’s lion share of inbound comes from China. But, Karen opined that despite the slowdown in the economy, they still received huge volumes of Chinese travellers from second and third tier cities. “China is a vast country, so we will keep getting numbers from there,” she said. Given the year-on-year growth in terms of footfalls, the Harbour City could moot expansion, especially in India – which despite its spectacular economic rise in the past two decades, has been bereft of a shopping experience like Hong Kong. Karen, however, said that the mall had foreign investments, but it was still confined, only, to China.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *