The New Pedder Arcade Is Hong Kong’s Must-Visit Menswear Destination
— 6 December 2023

The New Pedder Arcade Is Hong Kong’s Must-Visit Menswear Destination

— 6 December 2023
Randy Lai
Randy Lai

When one considers Hong Kong’s panoply of (admittedly still enjoyable) luxury retail destinations — be it LANDMARK or Pacific Place — “relaxed” and “personable” aren’t quite the adjectives that spring to mind.

In convincing the region’s luxury shoppers to open their wallets, the Asian financial centre has always favoured a go-big-or-go-home approach. This begs the question as to what unique experiences Hong Kong’s shopping ecosystem can deliver to affluent executives/leisure travellers from Shanghai, Singapore, Bangkok, Kuala Lumpur… and even Australia.

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As an answer to that, Mark Cho — the esteemed multihyphenate behind such globe-trotting menswear concepts as Drake’s and The Armoury — recently unveiled The Pedder Arcade: a multifaceted retail destination, inspired by “historic European shopping arcades,” which opened in Hong Kong’s Central district last month.

Visitors will find The Arcade secreted away on the 5th floor of the eponymous Pedder building; a real slice of Hong Kong’s pre-Handover history, built to a Beaux-Arts specification in 1923. The location carries special significance for Cho, business partner Alan See, and the duo’s cohorts — many of whom were involved in the opening of the OG Armoury store, now reincarnated as The Pedder Arcade’s corner tenant.

Pedder Arcade Hong Kong
Hong Kong-based designer Katherine Wong, who has worked with The Armoury team for over a decade, was tapped to imagine the store’s comfortable new home inside The Pedder Arcade.

Those familiar with the retail scene in Southeast Asia will find plenty of subtle revelations upon arrival. Each shop unit (the entire floorplan is split between five) is airy and congenially appointed, providing a dramatic contrast to the glass, steel, and aloof ambience that’s generally par for the course in Central’s luxurious shopping annexes.

Unusually for these sorts of commercial buildings in space-starved Hong Kong, however, is the fact the public areas also feature in-built Palladian windows. Beyond the obvious parallel to covered English shopping centres (e.g. Burlington Arcade), Katherine Wong — who oversaw The Arcade’s design — sought to take advantage of the resulting natural lighting, using materials that give the impression of being simultaneously in and out of doors.

Pictured: A lengthy concourse — nearest to the public area’s oversized Palladian windows — allows shoppers to walk the length of the Arcade, and ponder a selection of curated artworks all the while.

Relocated Armoury shopfront aside, The Pedder Arcade is home to an array of intriguing permanent tenants. The combined composition of these speaks to the erudition and discernment of the destination’s intended shoppers. Across the concourse, auction house Phillips has set an outpost in its growing roster of ‘Perpetual’ boutiques.

Conversely, the spaces immediately adjacent to 501 (the Armoury’s unit number) are all dedicated, in some form or another, to apparel and fashion goods. Here, there is more flexibility for tenants who wish to appear on more of a cameo basis: with current pop-ups, running until the end of 2023, including Nigel Cabourn and artisanal Scottish knitwear label, Drumohr.

The enviable network of independent brands that Cho and See have cultivated with their team allows for a range of interesting new showcases during the year — rewarding repeat visits.

Last, and most certainly not least, shoppers are encouraged to bookend their journey at The Armoury Study: a serene lounge that doubles as a co-working area and cigar lounge. The latter is run in partnership with Davidoff of Geneva, who has supplied The Pedder Arcade with all manner of signature and rare tobacco.

Should your stomach crave something more substantial, there’s even the option to order snacks and coffee from the main Atrium bar. Well, that’s one way to fuel up.

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If you’ve enjoyed this story about a different kind of retail experience in Hong Kong, then check out some of our other favourite travel and style-related stories featuring the region:

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Randy Lai
Following 6 years in the trenches covering consumer luxury across East Asia, Randy joins Boss Hunting as the team's Commercial Editor. His work has been featured in A Collected Man, M.J. Bale, Soho Home, and the BurdaLuxury portfolio of lifestyle media titles. An ardent watch enthusiast, boozehound and sometimes-menswear dork, drop Randy a line at [email protected].


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