Saturday, November 12, 2011
Toy Shopping in Taipei
I just came back from a holiday in Taipei.
Like any self respecting toy collector in a foreign land, I had to trawl the streets of Taipei to seek out the toy shops.
In general, there are 3 main clusters of toy shops.
Wan Nian Commercial Building
Wan Nian Commercial Building is seated at the intersection of Emei (pronounced as er-mei) Street and Xi Ning South Road in Ximendng.
It was my very first stop as my hotel was located in Ximending.
Majority of the toy shops are located on the fourth floor.
The shops there sell mostly model kits of Gundam, cars and military vehicles.
As you know, I love to collect 1/72 scale tanks and there is one shop that had great stocks of such tanks.
They had a great selection plus the price was at least $10 lower as compared to Singapore.
A fruitful and bountiful first day of toy hunting. I LIKE.
The shop where I blew so much $$ on 1/72
Ding Hao Department Store
You can either alight at MRT Zhongxiao Fuxing Station or MRT Zhongxiao Dunhua Station.
From the station, find the East Metro Mall which is basically a underground mall that links the 2 stations together.
At the East Metro Mall, exit at exit 11. Ding Hao Department Store is just outside exit 11. You can't miss it.
On the third floor of Ding Hao Department Store is where Monster Taipei is located, which is considered a big name in the Taipei's toy scene.
They sell mostly designer toys but there are a few assorted 6" figures around.
Another toy shop called Tin Tin was supposed to be on the fourth floor but I could not find it when I was there.
Outside Monster Taipei, there is a flight of stairs that will lead you to the ground floor and out of Ding Hao Department Store. From there, turn left into a lane and walk straight. At the 3rd section, turn to the left and you will reach a shop called "Monster Gear" (from the same nice people who also brought you Monster Taipei). It is opposite a cafe called "Osweets" The shop looks more classy and cool as compared to Monster Taipei.
They sell mostly designer toys and they were having their yearly sale (20% to 40%) when I was there.
HaHa...let the shopping begin!
Hot Dog Toys and Paradise
Another popular toy shop is Hot Dog Toys.
It sells mostly designer toys and anime related toys.
Located near MRT Zhongxiao Dunhua Station.
Near Hot Dog Toys, you will find Paradise which is another toy shop selling designer toys and clothes. Very cool layout.
Within this area, there are other shops selling cute and cool t-shirts and fashion. Worth a check out.
Got a few designer toys from Paradise. Nothing exciting.
Other toy shops
The big malls like SOGO & Momo have very poor selection of toys, very different from Singapore. However in Taipei 101, there is a toy shop called Toy Land which is located just outside the food court at basement 1.
Nothing exciting. You can find console games, Ultraman, model cars and Gundam.
Lego looks pretty well stocked here.
The 12" scene is not really big in Taipei, most of the time I could not find any 12" figures. However toys relating to anime are in abundance. Mainly due to the Japanese influence in Taiwan.
As I also collect 1/72 scale tanks and designer toys, this is where I bought the most toys.
If you are not into model building (gundam, cars or millitary vehicles) or designer toys, Taipei might be a disappointing place for toy hunting.
Thanks to Sebastian who informed me that I have missed the biggest place in Taipei for buying toys, which is TAIPEI CITY MALL. It is underground, right below Taipei Main Station. It has tons of toy shops, offering all kinf of cool stuff (tamashii, bandai, revoltech, figma, figuarts, etc)!!!
I may have missed it (Boo Hoo) but that does not mean you have to...:)
My Taipei Toy Haul