Atomi, Orchard 

Atomi is a labour of love for former business consultant Andrew Tan and Tokyo native Mitsuko Murano. The couple regularly trawl through lesser-known parts of Japan to meet with craftsmen and seek out products for their Mandarin Gallery retailer. “Because we are customers first, we think about how we wish to be served in our own shop, not what we want to sell and push,” says Tan. Atomi now represents more than 25 Japanese designers, including Maruni furniture, Fog Linen Works and 1616/Arita. 

Mandarin Gallery, 333a Orchard Road, 238897
+65 6887 4138 

Merci Marcel, Tiong Bahru

French restaurant Merci Marcel’s retail space in Singapore’s Tiong Bahru is a find. Founders Marie Charlotte Ley and Antoine Rouland stock cheese (flown in weekly), wine, jam and tea by European independent and small-batch makers, next to Parisian label Izipizi’s eyewear and tableware from Falcon. There’s a whiff of the cafés of Le Marais and Montmartre, including printed lampshades from Antoinette Poisson and canvas artwork from Singapore-based French artist Gabriel Dufourcq.

56 Eng Hoon Street, 160056
+65 3138 1506

Shouten, Orchard

Brothers Keng How and Kage Chong, founders of menswear label Biro, have a penchant for Japanese craftsmanship. Alongside their own clothing designs, Shouten stocks an ever-changing gallery of products, including Sueki red-clay ceramic bowls baked in Tokushima prefecture’s oldest kiln.

Mandarin Gallery, 333A Orchard Road, 38897

B Store, Dhoby Ghaut 

Nelson Yap and Damien Tan were busy growing their menswear label and retail outlet, Benjamin Barker, when the list of brands queuing to secure spots on their shelves got out of hand. So they launched B Store – formerly known as The Assembly Store – as a one-stop shop (and café) for men’s clothing, accessories and collectables. Today the industrial space carries more than 60 global lifestyle brands, including Fjällräven outdoor gear from Sweden, Rawrow bags from South Korea and Singaporean watch brand Hypergrand. 

The Cathay, 2 Handy Road, 229233
+65 6733 3143

Huls Gallery, Tanjong Pagar

“There are a lot of shops selling Japanese products but not kogei – fine Japanese crafts,” says Choon Yeow Lim, general manager of Singapore’s Huls Gallery, which specialises in just that. Lim and the company’s founder, Yusuke Shibata, gathered the best plates, bowls and saké cups made by craftsmen from across Japan’s rural prefectures to line the shelves of their elegantly converted 19th-century shophouse showroom, which opened in 2018. 

24 Duxton Hill, 089607
+65 9643 8910

Images: Marc Tan, Lauryn Ishak

Go back: Singapore


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Monocle 24

00:00 01:00

  • The Urbanist