Dover's doors open

Arching across the middle of Dover Street Market is a house-like structure which holds a cashiers’ station (above). Black Comme des Garcons is one of the more than 25 brands available at the store.
Arching across the middle of Dover Street Market is a house-like structure which holds a cashiers’ station (above). Black Comme des Garcons is one of the more than 25 brands available at the store.PHOTOS: DOVER STREET MARKET SINGAPORE
Arching across the middle of Dover Street Market is a house-like structure which holds a cashiers’ station. Black Comme des Garcons (above) is one of the more than 25 brands available at the store.
Arching across the middle of Dover Street Market is a house-like structure which holds a cashiers’ station. Black Comme des Garcons (above) is one of the more than 25 brands available at the store. PHOTOS: DOVER STREET MARKET SINGAPORE

Dover Street Market opens today with more than 25 brands and exclusive apparel on sale

Walk into new retail concept Dover Street Market (DSM) Singapore in Tanglin Village and one is immersed in a fashion gallery of textures, prints and architectural elements.

The sprawling 12,325 sq ft store, with its 10m-high ceiling, looks more like an exhibition space than a retail shop.

At Black Comme des Garcons, one of the many lines from Japanese fashion brand Comme des Garcons, clothes hang from tall cage-like black grilles. The scene changes entirely at American label Thom Browne, where apparel hang from minimalist racks in a white marble enclave. Next to it is Japanese streetwear brand Undercover's space with its rust red enclosure and neon green lights.

Italian luxury label Gucci has its own corner, plastered with pink and green wallpaper in the brand's signature floral style, a theme that continues from the walls to the carpeted floor.

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Arching across the middle of the store is a house-like structure - a patchwork of metal and wood in black, mustard yellow, blue and green - which holds a cashiers' station.

Each space stands unique, yet they all come together to form a cohesive, gallery-esque retail concept true to DSM's style.

The multi-label concept store - the fourth DSM in the world after London, Tokyo and New York - opens today.

Conceived by Comme des Garcons' founder Rei Kawakubo and her husband Adrian Joffe, it is known for its exclusive collaborations and discerning curation of coveted luxury and streetwear brands.

It opens here with more than 25 brands, including French labels Celine and Balenciaga, Japanese label Sacai and American label The Row. The store's merchandise, visual displays and interior design will change twice a year - in January and July. Exclusive collaborations and limited-edition collections will also be part of the store's evolving line-up.

Also available at the store, which opens from 11am to 8pm daily, are exclusive Dover Street Market Singapore T-Shirts ($115), a tie-up between the store and renowned Russian fashion designer and photographer Gosha Rubchinskiy. Peaceminusone, a streetwear label by K-pop star G-Dragon, has also collaborated with DSM Singapore on an exclusive collection of apparel and accessories, including T-shirts ($650).

Sports brand Nike also debuts its first NikeLab space in South-East Asia here. It will feature limited-edition footwear and capsule collections, such as the NikeLab x Pigalle line.

Fashion fans will also find black sneakers ($179) from the Anti Social Social Club x Vans x DSM collection, as well as a beige and dark pink large Cabas Phantom bag ($2,400) from Celine.

DSM Singapore is a part of lifestyle quarter Como Dempsey - a dining and retail complex by Como Lifestyle, a subsidiary of local fashion doyenne Christina Ong's Club 21.

Dover Street Market first opened in London in 2004. It expanded to Tokyo in 2006, then opened in Manhattan in New York in 2013.

Tenants in Tanglin Village are looking forward to the increased footfall that DSM is likely to bring to Dempsey.

Ms Christy Arriesgado, 31, manager of burger restaurant Roadhouse and bar The Green Door, hopes the store will bring more locals and tourists to Dempsey on weekdays.

She says: "It can be quiet here on weekdays. I hope DSM will attract more people. If they come, they will explore Dempsey and, hopefully, after shopping they will eat here too."

Ms Erin Taylor, 34, gallery manager at Redsea Gallery, says she thinks DSM will raise the profile of Dempsey.

She adds: "I think it's great. As a gallery, we'd love to see more stores open here and have Dempsey become more of a destination for art, design and fashion. More of a lifestyle stop than just a place to come for dinner."

Fans of Tanglin Village say DSM is a welcomed addition to the area.

Counsellor Amanda Ang, 29, who likes the place for its food and relaxed atmosphere away from the city, says she is excited to visit the fashion haven. "I've visited the DSMs in London and Tokyo, and these have been mind-blowing. I can't wait to see what the Singapore branch has to offer."

The bachelorette says she would definitely consider buying from the store. "I like high-fashion meets streetwear, and that only a curated number of pieces are being brought in, which also means these wearable art pieces won't be readily available at every other mall in Singapore. That's a huge draw for me."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 29, 2017, with the headline 'Dover's doors open'. Print Edition | Subscribe