Today, let’s check out Don Don Donki third and largest outlet in Singapore in City Square Mall at Farrer Park. The establishment had undergone a rapid expansion since they first came into Singapore shores late 2017. Since then they had opened their second branch last year at Tanjong Pagar’s 100am Mall, and most recently, this newest Don Don Donki at City Square Mall Basement 2 which had been operating since January this year.
Entrance and basement Japanese Food Court
Furthermore, this City Square Mall Donki has two entrances, with one leading into the store itself and the other into a Japanese-style food court. The food court is similar to the one we see at their Orchard Gateway branch, but features a wider selection of Japanese cuisine.
Here, you can find usual staples like Fried chicken from Rang Mang Shokudo, Seafood and Unagi bowls from Bonta Bonta and Yakiniku Heijoen beef bowls. Not forgetting the Ramen Santouka too. When done, you can finish it up with cool desserts from Naganuma Ice Co and Hokkaido ice cream.
Moreover, the spot where Don Don Donki sits in City Square Mall used to be where a Toys”R”Us used to be, the Toy store had moved up to level 4 within the same mall. With Donki taking over, now, the establishment was transformed into a foodcourt, and bargain supermarket.
Notably, it competes in the likes against incumbent NTUC Fairprice also located on the mall’s Basement 1 and Mustafa center across the road.
A thing worth noting too is the this Donki, unlike the 24 hour Orchard branch operates up to midnight daily. Also, the food court closes earlier at about 9.30pm.
The supermarket offerings are pretty extensive. You start off with fresh fruits and vegetables produce. Greens are all laid in open boxes at the center space. Staples such as Shitake mushrooms, Fuji large apples and Strawberries are very well priced for the quality.
Also, a long row of vegetables chillers run along left of the mall. These houses an assortment of imported perishables as well as frozen dessert products like Taiyaki. In typical Japanese style, the selections are all colorfully labelled with illustrations. Notably, it has a very Japanese vibe indeed.
The greens section leads into the red meats and seafood sections. Here you can find your selection of wagyu grade beef fillets as well as those for Shabu Shabu. Also, topping up the food section are aisles of dried food, with sauces, condiments, as well as rice and noodles.
Furthermore, Don Don Donki prides itself to offer distinctive store formats and goods offering at every store. Also, the supermarket section leads into the lifestyle, health and beauty section. They are all situated on the same floor. A thing I like which sets this Don Don Donki apart from their other 2 branches is that everything are all situated on the same Basement 2 floor. It reduces the need to hop between floors or having to checkout before going to the next.
Moreover, the store floor areas are larger too, sitting in at 26,000 square feet of shopping space. The large store aisles are mostly clutter-free. This is a vast improvement to other smaller Don Don Donki branches like the notoriously cramped 100am store.
Return of the Toys section
Furthermore, the branch at city Square mall sees a return of the Toy section. This was a welcome to me as their previous outlets at their Orchard Gateway and 100am branches had been drastically downsized to make way for an expanded dry foods selection.
Additionally, I am pleased to report that you find the usual selection of Tomica toys, stuffed toys and Japanese collector model kits as well.
Also, Toy hunters will be pleased to find on offer several props on sale here. Interesting finds includes Russian-doll style treasure chests costing under $5 each, as well as quirky Japanese trademarked cosplays kits and face masks for amusement and laughs.
Furthermore, going in the quirky Japanese items on sale, are a couple of health products in the health and beauty’s section. You find massagers, light fitness equipment as well as relaxation therapy products. In line with pure Japanese tradition, the store includes a “health and wellness” section including an assortment of Tenga Health Products.
Also new for the City square store is a $2 bargain section. It is like a Mini Daiso of sort. Presumably this is Don Don Donki’s answer to incumbents Daiso as well as the newcomer Komonoya Osaka Japan.
Don Don Donki director Hideki Okada coined that as part of the store’s “experiential shopping” concept it aims to offer to customers, expect the store offerings to be always changing.
Additionally, they operate in Singapore as Pan Pacific International Holdings as a holding company for Don Quijote Group. You may remember that the company choose to operate under the “Don Don Donki” name in place of the globally-known “Don Quijote”, due to a restaurant in Dempsey Road already bearing a similar name.
Lastly, the supermarket exits right back into the food court which you see when entering the supermarket. Moreover, there is a large Gachapon wall at the food court exit. Prices are however tad overpriced, costing about $3 to $4 on average for a capsule. Sadly, the Gachapon selections are not extensive either.
All in all, Don Don Donki’s third and largest outlet in City Square Mall has plenty to offer. It is a rather holistic experience, an all in one Japanese discount shopping experience with a food court, supermarket and a bargain section to boot. Also, it is nice to see the return of the Toys section, though don’t expect any offerings here to be permanent as part of the store’s experimental shopping offerings.
Don Don Donki City Square Mall
City Square Mall, 180 Kitchener Road,
Opening Hours: 9am to midnight daily