In the luxury retail game, the established cities in Asia are undoubtedly Hong Kong, Singapore and Tokyo. A report in AsiaOne indicates that Thailand is gearing up to challenge these established cities to capture a bigger slice of luxury retail. With the global economy heavily affecting the wallets of consumers in the West, wealthy tourists from Asia are coming in to take the place of these shoppers. The luxury market in Thailand has been posting a healthy growth rate but retailers in Bangkok are keen for the market to grow even further.
At Gaysorn, a luxury retail mall, it has indicated that about 70% to 80% of shoppers are overseas tourists and about half of those are from Asia. The stakeholders in the Thailand luxury scene are keen to upgrade Thailand's image as a destination for luxury retail rather than the usual â€˜cheap shopping'. To do this, Thailand needs to attract luxury fashion and beauty houses to set up shop in Thailand. The growth is not all in Bangkok as other cities are also keen on a similar image upgrade.
Do you think that Thailand is able to revamp its image as a â€˜luxury retail destination' in a short span of time? What will be the potential challenges that The Land of a Thousand Smiles face?