Shopping in Singapore is better than Paris Secret shoppers rate the prettiest, most welcoming, most customer-friendly retail streets — which is your no. 1?

Chanel LondonMystery shoppers suss out the surroundings to rate the appearance of luxury stores.

How many shopping trips truly turn out to to be the idyllic experiences your friends promised they would be?

Presence Mystery Shopping, a Paris-based market consulting company, thinks it has found 30 places that really truly can offer shopping heaven. It has published a report ranking the welcome and service for the world’s most famous shopping streets.

“We surveyed the quality of retail service on iconic shopping streets that tourists are told they just need to visit,” says Presence Business Development Manager, Leslie Kambourian.

Over 30 main avenues were visited, and nearly 400 individual retail outlets were observed, including perfume shops, restaurants, ready-to-wear outlets and showrooms.

Orchard Road in Singapore came out in first place, Avenue de la Liberté in Luxembourg followed in second and PC Hooftstraat in Amsterdam took third spot.

The “mystery shoppers” ranked their experiences based on observations in four categories:

  • Appearance (cleanliness, lighting)
  • Welcome (staff greetings, courtesy, availability)
  • Atmosphere (garbage cans available, open space, clean pavement)
  • Contact with passers-by (friendliness, helpfulness to people passing through the store)

Click to page 2 for 11-30

Got your own favorite shopping areas? Tell us about them in the comments.

World’s top 10 shopping avenues and their scores out of 100


Orchard Road

This is what happens to shoppers who attempt all 22 malls on Orchard Road in Singapore.


1. Orchard Road, Singapore: 89

According to mystery shoppers, Orchard Road led with the best atmosphere because of its “wide and clean pavements and diversity of shops.”

But tourists won’t be able to sweep every shop in one day; the whopping 22 shopping malls and six department stores on the Road might wipe them out.



Number 16, a U.S. Banana Republic on Champs Elysées in Paris shows off its taste palette.


2. Avenue de la Liberté, Luxembourg: 85

This avenue placed first in overall appearance. “The atmosphere is perfect, there is plenty of room and everywhere is well lit,” says a mystery shopper.

If you suddenly have an urgent situation where you need to see a praline specialist, visit the Jeff de Bruges. This chocolate expert has whatever chocolates you need, spicy, soft, creamy, fruit and rich.

Jeff de Bruges, 17 Rue de la Liberté – Guéliz, 40000, +33 (0)3 87 37 15 61


Saks Fifth Avenue

Saks Fifth Avenue in New York sits low at number 26, but this luxury store gets an A for appearance.


3. PC Hoofstraat, Amsterdam: 83

The district of PC Hoofstraat was noted for its friendliness, retail outlets were courteous and welcoming to the people walking by the store, creating an inviting atmosphere.

But, there is always backlash with a bit of popularity. The local Dutch refer to Sports Utility Vehicles as “P.C. Hooft-tractors.” It’s a derogatory term because you can find one on every corner.


Ginza LV

At number 9, this colorful Louis Vuitton lights up Ginza in Tokyo


4. Bagdat Avenue, Istanbul: 83

Shoppers thought Bagdat Avenue was a winner in appearance because of its “floral areas, collective taxis and water sellers.”

If you want a traditional Turkish coffee that won’t break the budget on a high-end street, look no further than Starbucks. The American chain has properly integrated Turkish style coffee on its menu to blend in with Istanbul’s café culture.


Hong Kong Gucci

Despite Hong Kong’s reputation as a shopping haven, it’s service drops it down to number 29.


5. Oscar Freire, Sao Paolo: 82

Brazilians are known to be among the friendliest people in the world, so it’s no wonder this street came in as the third most welcoming.

Don’t be surprised if you walk into a luxury store and find the odd “ in-store butler” who will hand you a glass of Champagne or coffee.

For a mid-shop snack, try some locally made fresh baked goods at the Casa de Paes (Bella Paulista House of Bread). The bakery offers gelato, pizzas, confectionaries and other guilt-less pleasures you grant yourself on vacation.


Karl Johan

Number 19, Karl Johan in Oslo.


6. George Street, Sydney: 82

Beyond the friendly department stores and brightly lit boutiques, there are many quirky little shops at the southern end of George Street.

Nestled under the Sydney Harbour Bridge, there are boutiques selling everything from high-end art and photography to nick-knack shells and shark teeth.

But if you’re in the mood for up-scale, the beautiful old sandstone Queen Victoria building is home to top-end fashion stores and cafes. The building sits next to the Sydney Townhall building, the iconic steps are a common meeting place for locals.

7. Mariahilferstrasse, Vienna: 80

Stretching 1.8 kilometers, the avenue places third in the “appearance” category, and it’s not just its shops that are commendable. There are some noteworthy historic buildings to visit nearby.

Check out the Museum Quarter which holds a variety of outstanding contemporary art and classic modern pieces. Also, look out for the iconic Rahlstiege staircase from 1886.

Museum’s Quarter, Museumsplatz 1/5 1  1070 Vienna, Austria

8. Avenue Louise, Brussels: 78

Scoring points for out-of-store atmosphere, this shopping street has a peaceful Nirvana nearby in the form of the Jardin Du Roi, (Garden of the King).

True to its name, the garden has a perfectly manicured geometric bushes and stunning flower designs.

Jardin Du Roi, Avenue Louise, 1050 Brussels

9. Ginza Line, Tokyo: 78

There’s been enough written about Ginza over the years to wallpaper every eye-wateringly expensive hostess bar in the area, but there is actually more to the high-end shopping, eating and drinking. At Ginza, you can look to the streets for inspiration.

Given a free Sunday afternoon, few things give a visitor a glimpse of the real Tokyo as readily as a stroll down the temporarily pedestrianized Chuo Dori.

Stripped of cars between noon and 5 p.m., the main strip is the spot in the capital for people watching, lounging at pavement cafés and generally freeloading your way to a memorable day out.

10. Bond Street, London: 77

If you’re heading over to Bond Street, make sure you’re not just going for a leisurely stroll. The report writes “Bond Street in London is by far the last for its atmosphere. It is certainly clean, but there is work going on all the time.”

The mystery shoppers came across construction on 63 percent of the visits. On the bright side, shoppers say that the friendliness of Londoners make people forget the work going on in the avenue.

World’s best shopping avenues, 11-30

11. Aleksanterinkatu, Helsinki: 77

12. Passage Victor Emmanuel, Milan: 76

13. Strøget, Copenhagen: 75

14. Wangfujing Avenue, Beijing: 75

15 Alvear, Buenos Aires: 71

16. Champs Elysées, Paris: 71

17. Drottninggatan, Stockholm: 71

18. Apgujeong-dong, Seoul: 71

19. Karl Johan, Oslo: 70

20. Calle Serrano, Madrid: 69

21. Friedrischstrasse, Berlin: 68

22. Ulica Florianska, Krakow: 67

23. Nevsky Prospekt, St. Petersburg: 67

24. Ermou Street, Athens: 65

25. Rue Ste Catherine, Montreal: 64

26. 5th Avenue, New York: 64

27. Avenida da Liberdade, Lisbon: 61

28. Rue du Rhône, Geneva: 59

29. Des Voeux Road, Central, Hong Kong: 57

30. Linking Road, Bandra, Mumbai: 56

    • Endi
    • January 16th, 2012

    I wonder if the surveyers are true shoppers. I find it unbelievable that PC Hofstraat (Amsterdam, NL) is included, while Rodeo drive (Los Angeles, CA – USA) is not – while Rodeo Drive clearly fulfill the criterias if not more. I have lived in both countries, actually currently living in The Netherlands and for me as regular shopper PC Hoofstraat should not be included in the list – this area is just a small street compare to Rodeo Drive. While some of the location i.e: Paris, Singapore & Hongkong are fine though not sure that their ranks are suitable.

    • pavlosssssssssssssssssss
    • January 16th, 2012

    Weather I am rich or not is non of your business but yes – I can afford these items. In terms of spelling, the Dutch have often told me themselves that they find their own language difficult, especially for me a foreigner here.

    Now if you are talking about quality – I would assume for product/brand of this scale, quality is given. In terms of service quality – I find a lot of times depending upon the individual sales person as overall in various countries & stores they are about the same.

    If you are referring to the quality of product selection, I find & some friends of mine who are big shopper find the brand selection are rather minimal – PC Hoofstraat/Amsterdam carries relatively limited global brand selection with half of them European or Nederland brands. For the big names i.e: Chanel, the store is relatively small compared to their store if Florence, NYC, LA, Singapore or Jakarta. You will not find Dior, YSL, Bottega Veneta etc.

    Well, my comment is based on my perspective as a customer & personal experiences having been to some of these locations & stores.

    • anissa
    • January 16th, 2012

    Nice to read that “Linking Road” in Bandra in Mumbai ranks 30th in the best shopping avenues in the World.Also surprised that beautiful Orchard road in Singapore has still managed to maintain its status as the World’s best shopping avenue after decades of prominence with other new-comer City’s entering the “Shopping avenues” of the World, most prominent being Mumbai.Mumbai itself has numerous plush shopping malls and i was surprised that “Linking road” was selected amongst the numerous Mumbai malls, most famous being ” High Street Phoenix”, a massive entertainm,ent cum shopping complex built on Mumbai’s defuct mill Industry.

    • mesotuzoooossss
    • January 16th, 2012

    I think PC H Amsterdam is on the list and at nr. 3 because there is something none could offer and that is “Gezelligheid”. I agree with you about the limited range…. but Singapore is to be at number TEN in my opinion. I was shopping on Orchard Road Singapore last summer. I can bet with you that you won’t get anything near to ” gezellig’ atmosphere as in PC H Amsterdam.

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