When I first started coming to Hong Kong Tsim Sha Tsui (normally called just TST) was packed full of places targeting western tourists who were after cheap tat and pirated goods. Sine the last time I was here things have changed due to a number of reasons.
1. There has been a big crack down on counterfeit goods and while you still get touts offering fake watches and designer handbags, all those shops that filled the area have gone. No more dodgy clothing, no more pirated CDs and DVDs, just more regular forms of shops.
2. There’s a new tourist in town and he’s over in greater numbers. The Chinese mainlander. Problem with this type is it’s new money and a desire to spend. The net result is the designer goods you see around here are the real thing. Sure just before the park there was a row of designer shops, but now there’s new building and new stores every where sporting names like Prada, Burberry, Louis Vitton, …..
This has caused me a slight problem I was not expecting. Postcards. Now in this modern electronic world I only send them to immediate family, or at least would do so, but the places that used to sell them either were also selling dodgy wares or where dependant on those shops. Additionally I get the impression that mainlanders do not do postcards (personally I think postcards are a European/US thing as I’ve also struggled to buy them in Japan and India).