World's Largest Mall Opens in Dubai Thursday

World's Largest Mall Opens in Dubai Thursday

Commercial News » Commercial Real Estate Edition | By Alma Kadragic | October 24, 2008 1:38 PM ET

(DUBAI, UAE) - The largest shopping mall in the world that will combine shopping and theme park type entertainment opens Thursday, October 30, in Dubai. The original opening date of Dubai Mall two months earlier was postponed in order to finish people and car moving systems.

Mohamed Ali Alabbar, Chairman of Emaar Properties, the developer of  the project, said, "The Dubai Mall is expecting some 30 million customers in the very first year of trade, and to support this, it is important to have a smooth traffic and public service infrastructure."

With more than 14,000 parking spaces and a bridge over the main highway providing direct access, shoppers should find it relatively easy to come to Dubai Mall. By the end of 2009, the Dubai Metro system which is under construction should provide an alternative to private cars and taxis.

Two iconic department stores from the US and France respectively are making their first appearance in the region at Dubai Mall. The first is Bloomingdale's, the American fashion leader since 1872. Bloomingdale's is known for launching new designers, boutique sections, and the famous brown shopping bag.

Jim Badour, Chief Executive Officer, Emaar Malls Group, said, "The opening of Bloomingdale's in The Dubai Mall marks the beginning of a new retail culture for the region, and positions Dubai as the ultimate retail destination in the region offering the very best of global brands."

The other leading department store is Galeries Lafayette, the Parisian landmark, which plays a similar role to Bloomingdale's in its own country, launching trends and spanning price points from very expensive to affordable.

In addition to more than 1200 stores and 120 food and beverage outlets, Dubai Mall includes an Olympic size ice rink, the Aquarium and Discovery Center, the world's largest indoor gold market or souk, 22 cinemas, a SEGA Republic videogame center, and KidZania, a children's edu-tainment facility.

Dubai Mall with 12 million sq ft of shopping is part of the Downtown Burj Dubai development highlighted by what is expected to be at least for some time the tallest building in the world. Next to Dubai Mall is a five star hotel called The Address with 250 rooms and 450 serviced apartments.

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