China Duty Free Mall
So you go to Sanya for a beach vacation, a place to enjoy the sun and waves – then you see tons of promotions for the China Duty Free Mall… You think – what is this all about? Well, in a short answer – this is China’s insatiable desire for luxury and showing off. This December, as part of our Christmas trip, we traveled to Sanya – here are some of the earlier postings on the topic. We had really a great vacation and probably the only low point in it was the trip to the China Duty Free Mall.
Upon arrival in our hotel – there was a casual mention of it. We quickly stated – “…but we live in China and upon departure from Sanya to go back home…we will fly to Shanghai and not leave the country. How can we buy duty free?”
Turns out, the Chinese government has allotted Hainan and Sanya a special status – to stimulate the purchase of luxury foreign brand goods domestically tourists (non-living in Sanya) are allowed to purchase duty free goods up to the amount of RMB8000 twice a year. And the Chinese consumer appetite for luxury goods is never too small (per Statista.com)
So, we decided to check out the mall for ourselves. The photo below is a snapshot of the map where the Mall is located in relationship to the Grand Hyatt hotel – in Haitang Bay area
Here is the summary of the experience:
- Main verdict: Don’t waste your time…! Really…! No need to leave the beach for this.
Why? Here are the many reasons:
- Prices are incredibly high — even after duty free is considered. If you have the ability to shop in the US or Europe – do that there
- We compared real time on Amazon.com for the prices on Toblerone chocolates – in the store after 15% sale price discount, the prices of the same chocolates were about 25% lower price on Amazon.com vs in this Mall
- The selection is limited
But the Mall is a great place for people watching. Really…and had a good Christmas tree…Here are some more photos from those observations.
At the end of the day – at least the architecture of the CDF Mall is interesting – something to experience…