Terminal 21 is one of Bangkok’s newest major shopping malls, opened in October 2011. It’s a very unique concept mall, different in many ways from other large Bangkok shopping centers, and we do like the ideo.
Why is it named Terminal 21? Because of it’s innovative concept: being an airport terminal that leads to different places in the world. From outside it already resembles a modern airport, featuring the typical curvilinear glass-and-steel façade. And why 21? Well, because it’s located at Sukhumvit Soi 21.
Each of the nine floor represents a different city, and it’s reflected in the architecture and interior design. In total there are around 600 shops here – but most of them are brands that you probably have never heard of, independent and small boutique labels, not the typical big-name brandnames that you find in every other mall, except for the ground floor where you’ll find several big international brands (see below). Some of them are high-priced luxury brands, some of them are low-priced budget labels and many are in-between – so there is something for every wallet.
Los Angeles (6th Floor)
An eight-screen cineplex (two of them with 3D) operated by SF Cinema City, electronics and mobile phone stores and a spa are located here.
San Fransisco (5th and 4th Floor)
Here you find the food court (at Pier21), and popular landmarks, attractions and places from the area, including the Golden Gate bridge.
What’s also nice about this place: usually food courts serve overpriced, mediocre food. But at the Terminal 21 foodcourt you get really good value for your money.
And it’s really Pier21 themed:
There are also plenty of cafes and restaurants here, great for foodies. If you want a good coffee and/or cake, try the Baanying Cafe. For decent dimsum at very good prices try the Canton House.
Istanbul (3rd Floor)
Many small, independent boutique shops from all over the world selling gifts, accessories, home decor, trinkets, beauty products and toys.
London (2nd Floor)
More small, independent international and local boutique shops for fashion and accessories, many of them also for men.
Tokyo (1st Floor)
Yet more small, independent international boutique shops, and it’s mostly fashion for women.
At a small replicated Champs-Élysées, you find a mix of large international brands (like Esprit, Charles & Keith, The Body Shop, The Face Shop) and smaller labels, and a Starbucks.
Rome (Ground Floor)
This is where large international brands are lcoated, like Kipling, Jaspal, Adidas, Levi’s, Guess, Puma, Nike, and so on. And yes, apart from Sistine Chape murals you also find classical statues.
The information counter staff all wear flight attendant uniforms.
The basement is Carribean-themed, and here you also find the gourmet market and several take-away food outlets like Subway, Baskin & Robbins, Japanese Mos Burger, Madame Heng, Mister Donut and more.
It you’ve been visiting too many shopping malls and are bored by the uniform experience, this one might still be worth a visit. A ride along the 36-meter elevator surely is impressive too.
And check out the toilets – first, yes, they are very clean and well-maintained. But they also have heated toilet seats, bidets, and all kinds of fancy stuff that the Japanese are famous for. Plus, every toilet has it’s own theme (one is a bakery, one is a subway, and so on).
You also can enjoy free (and fast!) WiFi here (but you’ll need to register with your Passport once at the information counter in Rome, pardon, on the ground floor).
Terminal 21 is opened from 10Am to 10PM every day of the week. It’s easily accessible by BTS (Station Asok) and MRT (Station Sukhumvit), and can easily be fitted into any Bangkok sightseeing tour.
We can’t say whether Terminal 21 is the best shopping mall in Bangkok or not – that depends on what you like. But it’s definitely one of our favorites!
Here’s a video that shows Terminal 21 from outside and inside in different places – no sound there, so it’s not most exciting video in the world, but gives you good overview of impressions from the place:
You can also check out the Terminal21 Facebook page!