‘Officially amazing’ at Shinsegae Duty Free Centum City

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Martin Moodie
Martin Moodie is the Founder & Chairman of The Moodie Report.

busanFrom Boston to Busan in a few days, via New York, London, Incheon Airport and Seoul. Life on the road is pretty hectic this month and it’s not about to slow any as I catch an early bird flight to Shanghai Pudong Airport this morning (I’ll tell you about the exciting purpose of my visit in my next Blog).

Yesterday I had the privilege of an extensive tour of the new Shinsegae Duty Free store here in Busan, South Korea’s second-biggest city. The company relocated its previous flagship shop (the former Paradise Duty Free, which Shinsegae acquired in September 2012) here in March to the spectacular new Shinsegae Centum City complex, home to the world’s biggest department store and much else besides, including a Spa and ice rink.

shinsegae-ext-2 shinsegae-ext-3 shinsegae-extThat early bird flight beckons so I’ll let my pictures rather than words tell the story. Yes, they reveal scale, but the real story here is one of quality and range. Shinsegae is one of Asia’s most admired retailers and one brief tour of this vast complex tells you why. The company’s comparatively recent entry into duty free has changed the game here and presented the long-time giants, Lotte and Shilla, with a formidable, well-funded and quality-driven competitor.

A plaque describing the department store’s status as the world’s biggest says ‘Officially amazing’. That strikes me as a pretty good way of summing up the whole complex [I’ll add more pictures once I land in Shanghai].

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