World Porters is a huge complex housing shops, restaurants, a multiplex movie theater with eight screens and seating for 1,600, conference and meeting rooms, and exhibition halls. There are over 170 shops, many of which are import stores specializing in overseas fashions, and the prices are quite reasonable for Japan. The great variety of cuisine available among the over thirty restaurants gives you plenty to choose from when the shopping tires you out. If you want to catch movie while you are here, the eight-screen multiplex variety puts on road shows, recent Japanese blockbusters, cinema classics and reruns.
Queen's Square is another of Yokohama's modern success stories. Opened in 1996, it is almost a city in itself, combining business and commercial zones with cultural facilities. Altogether, it has a total floor space of about 500,000 sq. m. and houses specialty shops, offices, restaurants, a concert hall (the Yokohama Minato Mirai Hall), and the 485-room Pan-Pacific Hotel Yokohama. In the center of this huge complex there is an atrium that starts at B3 and goes up to the 5F. Take a walk along the Queen Mall, a huge shop and restaurant-lined passageway that runs right through Queen's Square linking the Landmark Plaza with the Pacifico Yokohama. If you do not want to do any shopping, stop by for a break in one of the many restaurants or cafes.
This huge shopping mall is conveniently located just inside the west exit of Yokohama Station and it has something for just about everybody. There are four floors above ground and two basement levels and each floor has a theme (or a variation on a theme). There are over 300 outlets in this complex, including boutiques, brand and specialty shops, restaurants, coffee shops, as well as, shops selling local and overseas delicacies. Although most of the stores represent popular brands and are therefore not the cheapest shops in town, there are frequent bargain sales when you can come away feeling pleased with what you have bought.
Star Jewelry is an exciting men and women's jewelry shop that is located on the third floor directly across from the entrance to Landmark Plaza from the Sky Walk. Star Jewelry's original shop is located in Motomachi, and Star Jewelry has been satisfying customers in Yokohama since 1946. There is a large collection of appealing rings, earrings, bracelets and necklaces in a broad range of prices. The Platinum 950 collection offers diamonds set in platinum. Sparkling diamond earrings are priced from 20,000 to 78,000 yen. There are also beautiful colored stones set in 18K gold from 20,000 yen. The staff is friendly, very helpful, and some can speak a little English.
Boasting the largest selection of technology related products in Japan, Yodobashi Akiba is an impressive complex of 9 enormous floors. Whether you're looking for an exclusive gadget from Japan, or just need to do some high-tech shopping, you'll be able to find it here. Don't worry if you find yourself feeling lost in this mini-metropolis; English-speaking staff members can help you find what you need. On floors 7-9, specialty places like Tower Records, a Golf Shop, and several restaurants round off this one-stop shopping experience. Additionally, there is direct access to and from Akihabara Station. Now that's service!
Isetan is not only one of the oldest and largest, but also perhaps the most foreigner-friendly department store in Tokyo. Its unique (and free) I club offers non-Japanese shoppers five percent discount on many selected items, plus a monthly newsletter containing the latest promotional information. Isetan also stocks a special range of women's clothing (Clover Shop) and men's wear (Supermale) in slightly larger sizes for those not quite petite enough for the standard Japanese range.
Iseichi is one of the old family-run shops still standing in Isezaki Mall. It sells chocolates and candies from around the world, the different brands (Hersheys, Cadburys, Milka, etc) hustling for shelf space in the small store. These are not the novelties of a chocolatier, but the down-to-earth goods everyone remembers from childhood. There is something for everyone here. If you don't fancy chocolate, they also supply a variety of snacks such as dried fruit, crackers, biscuits and cookies, nuts and gummy bears. The other side of the shop sells a good variety of wines and liquors, including miniature bottles. The shop is closed on Tuesdays. -AH
Hamaya is a fine tobacco shop located in the downtown shopping area of Izezaki-cho. Hamaya has a fine selection of cigars, all kept in a humidor. Hamaya offers some of the world's finest hand-rolled cigars, from Havana and elsewhere. Hamaya carries a fair assortment of pipes, including some expensive hand-carved Meerschaums, as well as more reasonably priced wood and briar pipes. The shop has a limited selection of pipe tobaccos. However, Hamaya stocks a full range of Japan Tobacco cigarette brands. It also carries a lot of paraphernalia for tobacco lovers, including lighters, flints, pipe cleaners, lighter fluid, and cigarette rolling papers.
This is a wonderfully friendly men's wear outlet. Even if your Japanese is minimal, the staff will go out of their way to help you find what you want. There is a limited, but well chosen selection of shirts, ties and accessories including names such as Burberry, Givenchy, Cartier plus some beautiful Japanese designed silk ties. The staff will measure you, advise you and generally make you feel pretty special. The largest size available is a substantial Large, but if you can speak a little Japanese, you may be able to order larger sizes.
Simplicity is the key here. Zone Press has a collection of unfancy, yet still stylish ladies semi-casual suits. The colors are little demur--dusty pinks, browns and greens--and the cuts are plain, but the overall effect is of elegance. The simplicity makes the style so versatile that the clothing will suit women of all ages. A little word of warning, however, the sizes are limited and generally a little on the petite side.
This shop sells clothing, accessories and jewelry from countries such as Thailand, Indonesia, China and Nepal, all carefully displayed on antique wooden furniture. Colorful embroidered jackets and shoes, silk bags and purses, table runners, cushion covers, scarves, mats and napkins are sold on the ground floor, while upstairs you'll find a small café offering hot and cold drinks and a small array of snacks. This is the place to find more unusual clothing or gifts, and a pleasant stop for coffee while browsing in Chinatown. The shop is closed Wednesdays. -AH
This store has an extensive range of top quality precious stones set in platinum, gold and silver. A word of warning though, this is an exclusive and expensive store! The service is good, but if you are not a serious buyer, expect a slightly frosty welcome. Despite this, the selection is extremely good and stylish. Designs range from very simple to the more elaborate and there are some slightly unusually cut stones. Every piece is immaculately polished and displayed giving an air of expensive elegance about the store. Perhaps a good place to get a gift for a really special occasion.