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The best shops in Shibuya

From massive department stores to independent shops and boutiques, these are the places you need to hit up next time you're in Shibuya

Shibuya covers such a large expanse of Tokyo that it's almost impossible to shop through the entire area in a single day. Filled with cafés, restaurants, souvenir shops and fashion boutiques, you can literally find anything your heart desires here. To help you filter through the craziness, we've picked out the best stores you must visit next time you enter this shopping oasis.

The best Shibuya shops

ABC Mart

An incredibly cheap and busy chain of shops selling brand-name footwear and sportswear with heavy discounts.

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Ambush Workshop

Shibuya's famed Cat Street welcomes the first-ever flagship for Tokyo-based brand Ambush. The space stretches across 140 square metres and its design remains true to the gender-neutral vibes of the brand’s collections. Situated in the former site of American Apparel’s Shibuya Men’s store, the store houses the brand’s conceptual jewellery alongside a growing number of its original apparel range...

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The Conran Shop Kitchen

The world's first completely kitchen-focused Conran Shop is found inside the Hikarie building and sells stylish supplies hand-picked from all over the globe. Alongside kitchenware is also a range of tasteful home decor, lighting and lifestyle items. It's all very pricey, sure, but just looking at the displays might inspire you to start freshening up your own kitchen...

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D47 Museum

The eighth-floor museum in the towering Hikarie building is all about spreading the love: each exhibition is devoted to showcasing a particular theme, as represented by all 47 of Japan's prefectures. The retail space also sells and supports a range of items focused on Japanese craftsmanship from each of the different prefectures...

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HMV Record Shop

If you're a music enthusiast who still swears by vinyl and enjoys digging through piles of secondhand records, then this shop will feel like a small slice of heaven. Opened in August 2014, HMV stocks up to 80,000 titles, with around 60 percent of those being vinyl and the rest mainly CDs. The focus is on releases from the '60s to the late '90s – something for everyone, in other words...

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Laila Tokio

The futuristic decor, featuring 8,000 tiny pyramids, is just one thing to love about Laila Tokio. Lovers of classic and cutting-edge designer looks will relish in the hard-to-find designers’ archives such as Helmut Lang and Raf Simons. Look out for up-and-coming brands from Japan and across the globe as well, fitting into the stores' theme of 'new couture'...

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Lighthouse Records

This atmospheric record store focuses on genres such as house, disco and Balearic house, and also boasts a pair of handsome vintage Klipschhorn floor speakers. Prices are very reasonable, and the shop gets a shipment of new stock every week, so check back regularly...

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Loft Shibuya

Spanning seven floors and stocking goods such as stationery, watches and accessories, health products, homewares, interiors, and variety goods, this specialist in lifestyle goods has got everything. The seasonal display on the first floor is particularly worth a visit. Festive items for special events such as Halloween, Christmas, Valentine’s Day get a showing here...

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Mandarake

You don’t have to go all the way to Akihabara to get your otaku fix: this subterranean shop in central Shibuya is overflowing with manga, anime, collectible toys and more. Stay tuned for store events and auctions where collectors can get their hands on rare finds...

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The Monocle Shop

As shop manager Keisuke Imaizumi says, 'This is where Monocle becomes 3D.' It's the perfect way to describe the store, as it's here that lifestyle products and fashion featured in the magazine spill from the page into reality, but it's also an apt description for the overall evolution of the Monocle brand. Since launching in 2007, it has grown into a brand that now encompasses a 24-hour radio station, cafés around the world, and retail stores in London, New York, Toronto, Hong Kong and Tokyo...

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Mujirushi Ryohin Shibuya Seibu

Imagine a place where all is calm and beautifully designed with clean lines and a neutral palette. This is Muji. It stocks everything from home and office accessories to toys, crafts and even a range of skincare. A recent revamp saw it reopening in November 2013 and this branch now also features a delicatessen, Café & Meal Muji, which offers some much-needed respite from the madding Shibuya crowds...

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Nude Trump

If you need to spice up your outfit before hitting a fashionable party in Shibuya (perhaps at hipster playpen Trump Room, just upstairs), stop by this long-standing vintage clothing shop beforehand. Run by absurdist fashionista Hayao Matsumura (who originally started the shop in Koenji in the late ’80s), Nude Trump is a chaotic jumble of outré garments and accessories...

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Papabubble Shibuya

While Papabubble, the speciality handmade sweet shop, usually calls Barcelona home, they're becoming something of a chain here in Tokyo, now operating locations in Shibuya and Nakano as well as inside the Daimaru Tokyo and Lumine Est department stores. What makes Papabubble different from most rivals is that you can actually see the sweets being made...

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Paris Miki

Offering a wide range of both popular international labels and Japanese brands, Paris Miki is your one-stop shop for all your eyewear needs. The Shibuya location could easily be mistaken for a ’70s diner, as its bright red interior is decked out with flashy retro furniture and nostalgic accents amidst the stock of glasses...

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Postalco

Steeped in the atmosphere of a bygone era, Postalco is proof that good taste never goes out of style. This classy stationery and accessory shop started life in Brooklyn in 2000 and did a lengthy stint in Kyobashi before relocating to its current home in Shibuya at the end of 2012. If you still prefer paper to iPads, you're probably going to appreciate their fabric and calfskin legal envelopes...

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Pulp 417 Édifice

Housed inside the new Shibuya Cast complex at the south end of Cat Street, this streetwear shop is the epitome of cool. Attached to their adjoining café and restaurant, it lets you lick on an ice cream cone as you browse through the selection of labels and footwear for both men and women. Although they do have designated men’s and women’s items, most things in the shop are meant to be unisex...

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Seibu Shibuya

The Shibuya store is split into two buildings, Annexes A and B, which face each other across the street. Annex A sells mainly womenswear; Annex B menswear, children’s clothes and accessories. Seibu also runs retailers Loft and Movida, both of which are within easy walking distance of the store...

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Shibuya 109

Recommended

This landmark store is the domain of the joshikosei – the fashion-obsessed teenage girls who don’t just follow trends but start them. Take a stroll around to see them in action and indulge in some amateur anthropology...

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Shibuya Hikarie

Never mind Shibuya's reputation as a hub for youth culture: one of the area's most prominent additions is courting an older and more refined brand of consumer. Opened in April 2012, the 34-floor Hikarie building stands on the site formerly occupied by the dome-topped Shibuya Tokyu Bunka Kaikan, and houses classy boutiques, restaurants and an arts complex to rival the nearby Bunkamura...

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Shibuya Modi

To describe Modi in a few words, it's a kind of 'smart mall' – a place where you can get pretty much anything you want in one place. It has everything from clothing to coffee to decor stores to karaoke – you know, just in case you feel like belting out a few tunes in between browsing...

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Shibuya Publishing Booksellers

The staff at this ultra-hip bookshop are more interested in encouraging new discoveries than hawking the latest bestseller. Magazines and books, both new and used, are arranged according to theme, meaning that you might find a philosophical tract alongside some manga or art books...

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Studious Jinnan

Stocking Japanese brands only, Studious is a rising 'select' store that seeks to promote local products to a global audience. Its store in Jinnan is a high-end version selling leading Japanese brands like N.Hoolywood and White Mountaineering. Be sure to check out the ‘Tokyo Souvenir’ section for stylish Tokyo-related goods...

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Tokyu Hands

From stationery to toilet-seat covers, this is the largest household goods store in Tokyo, packed with knick-knacks for the home. Particularly interesting is the party supplies section, which gives a unique glimpse into the Japanese sense of humour. It can be difficult to find your way around the multitude of floors, but getting a bit lost is part of the fun, right? 

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Tower Records

Tower Records was given an extensive overhaul in late 2012 that increased its whopping 5,000 square metres of floor space. There’s now a bookstore and a decent café on the second floor, the music sections now give prominent placement to back catalogue stock as well as new arrivals...

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Uniqlo Shibuya Dogenzaka

Spread across three floors, Shibuya’s biggest Uniqlo shop is particularly worth checking out at the weekend, when you might catch one of their blink-and-you’ll-miss-it sales...

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Find more amazing shops

The 100 best shops in Tokyo

The very best shops in Tokyo: new openings, vintage stores, essential boutiques, underground favourites and more

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By: Kaila Imada

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