| On 4 years ago

Baller Vibe: The Heat Is On At This Store In Johor Bahru Which Is Hypebeast Heaven

Calling all hypebeasts! Baller Vibe is heaven for anything hype and they have some serious heat on the shelves. Situated in Austin Heights in Johor Bahru, it fits right into the area that’s home to all the other up-and-coming secret spots.

I made the trip over the weekend to see if it’s worth all the hoo-ha. And boy, was I blown away. Get your passport ready because if you snooze, you lose.

This row of Bearbricks as well the full collection of Human Races (which would comfortably fetch thousands of dollars) were on display at the back of the store. This was merely the tip of the iceberg.

Only The Rarest Allowed

The centrepiece of the store is this huge bird-cage-like installation. With the word, ‘SWAG’, illuminated in neon blue hanging in the middle, you cannot miss it.

Insta-worthiness aside, you’ll forget the sign even exists if you enter the structure, because the section houses the rarest sneakers in the store.

These are not for sale but are displayed more as an attraction. It honestly raised goosebumps to finally see some of these sneakers up close and personal.

The ‘Solar Red’ Yeezy 2, very much the genesis of hype as we know it today. Sneakerheads revere this shoe to such high praise as it was probably the pair that piqued their interest in sneakers in the first place.

Now that Yeezus himself has jumped ship to Adidas, we may never ever see this shoe re-released ever again.

In the world of sneakers, the phrase, “friends and family” would raise the price of any shoe tenfold. This is because the shoes are only released for friends and family, which means that they were produced in a very small quantity.

Like this pair of ‘Pitch Black’ NMDs for example, with only 500 ever made in 2016. 100 of them were given away through Snapchat, whilst the rest of them went to friends and family only.

These were the first ever sneakers to feature a black boost on the midsole. They’re going for upwards of USD$3,500 (approx. S$4,620) on popular sneaker resale site, Stock X.

Fast forward to 2018 and dad shoes are the in-thing. Almost every high-end fashion label is coming up with their own rendition of the chunky shoe but let’s not forget the uproar that the Yeezy Wave Runners made when images first surfaced on the internet.

No one understood them at that time but it only proves the genius of Kanye West himself. Released through a pre-order online, you could have gotten your hands on the ugly shoe if you really wanted a pair, however, not many people did.

Thus, dividing the sneakerhead culture like no other shoe ever has. These now go for over 200% of their original price of USD$300 (approx. S$395).

This is Nike’s go at a self-lacing sneaker, the HyperAdapt, which retailed at USD$720 (approx. S$950). It’s crazy to see them up close, a truly historic sneaker given its innovative technology.

Kicks Galore

Now, here are some kicks you can actually buy. The newest Yeezy release, the Blue Tints, were sitting on the shelves – with boxes of boxes of them in stock.

The newest release of the collaboration between the cult brand, Fear Of God and Vans birthed these kicks. I don’t understand the hype around them in the States, but you’ll easily find them here. The price wasn’t listed but I have a feeling they’re going for a steal.

Arguably one of the best shoes of 2017, the Grey Kaws Jordan 4 were on sale for a cool RM6,800 (approx. S$2,279). The craftsmanship and usage of materials squashed any doubts on why it’s regarded as the Jordan brand’s best release in recent memory.

OFF-WHITE x Nike Presto

OFF-WHITE x Nike Vapormax

The undisputed collab of the year between Off-White and Nike gave us 10 reworked classic silhouettes. And out of those 10, four of them were available here at Baller Vibe: The Presto, Vapormax, Hyperdunk and Zoom Fly models.

The Prestos were priced at RM5,000 (approx. S$1,676), whilst the Varpormaxes were going for slightly cheaper at RM4,200 (approx. S$1,407) a pair.

Still regarded as one of the best colourways of the Ultraboost, I was amazed to see these in-store, sitting casually among lesser shoes. The Cream Ultraboost was priced at RM3,300 (approx. S$1,106).

Not Just Sneakers

It can’t be hypebeast heaven without Supreme, right? Although they didn’t have the largest collection of the polarising brand, it was a sizeable amount with some notable pieces amongst the racks.

I pulled this The North Face collab (pictured above), and you’ll find Palace and Bape on the racks too.

If you’re still looking for the Supreme X Louis Vuitton collaboration, you’re in luck. The iconic bogo welcomed me when I entered the store. That price was something else though. Yikes!

I was actually looking to cop some accessories before I made my trip here but the selection was very small, even if it did have a good variety.

Feature Walls

What instantly caught my attention were the two sneaker walls, flanking each side of the store.

It gave off a Stadium Goods vibe with the plethora of sneakers on display. The wall of Yeezys with the huge Supreme mat on the wall really made a good picture for the ‘gram. In a room where shoes go for exorbitant amounts, at least the photos are free, right?

May The Gambling Gods Be With You

I was in a gambling mood and the Key Master Machine was drawing me in with all the heat stored inside.

It’s RM20 (approx. S$6.70) for a single attempt. A huge gamble but those Prestos hanging on the top left had me fantasising a miracle. Well, you’ll be glad to know that I didn’t get them so if you think your luck is up to par, you can go and make everyone jealous.

— —

The store was something else. I’ve never seen so much heat assembled in a single place. I even got to hold my grails in hand and if I had the money to blow, I’ll be headed here first without a doubt.

There was so much to see and I really liked the Key Master Machine in the store. I’ve heard from the store owners that they’ve already had winners who’ve walked away with kicks. That must’ve been such a crazy feeling.

I can’t wait to head back with some proper funds to get a hold of some of these beauts. Till then, I guess I have to be content with imagining actually owning them.

If you’ve been having trouble scoring some limited ed sneakers, check this place out or have a go at our guide to getting that elusive pair.

Baller Vibe: No 17, Jalan Austin Height 8/5 Taman Mount Austin, Johor Bahru 81100 | Opening Hours: 1pm – 10pm | Facebook | Instagram

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