Lets start this one with a simple riddle; Whats the best kind of therapy in the world? I bet there are smiling faces that promptly think the words, ‘Retail Therapy’. Without a doubt, retail therapy can change the moods, drive the blues away and when in the right place make you spend a lot of moolah and not feel bad about it! Thats the beauty of a shopping paradise, and while many may think I am talking about Paris, Milan or Thailand, it is the mesmerising Middle East I am talking about. This enchanting place that once had a magic lamp hidden in the deep golden sands, has now been replaced with malls that are like our modern-day magic lamps, where you will find everything and anything that your heart desires. Right from shopping for high-end to medium-end brands, luxury goods, entertainment, food and recreation you will find it all in the malls of the Middle East. We have covered the biggest malls in the Middle East, not only in Dubai but also Abu Dhabi. Some of these malls like the Dubai mall are not only Dubai’s biggest, but could easily be the biggest mall in the world. We present a list of such mind-boggling malls that could be called mini cities in themselves. Read on and get charmed…
7. City Centre Deira, Dubai-
Area- 1.2 million square feet
This Mall was opened in the year 1995. It is the original flagship mall in the Majid Al Futtaim Properties portfolio and is located in the older part of the city. Though older than the other happening malls, this mall to boasts of sprawling spaces almost 1.2 million sq. ft. of retail selling space that comprises of 370 shops and 6,000 car-parking spaces. The malls anchor stores include Carrefour, Debenhams, Iconic, Sharaf DG, Virgin Megastore and Paris Gallery. Their Jewellery Court and Textile Court are quite sought-after. Other than this, City Centre Malls can be found in Ajman, Alexandria, Cairo, Muscat and Sharjah.
6. Abu Dhabi Mall, Abu Dhabi-
The fastest growing city of Middle East has a lot of must-go-to malls. There are many like Yas Mall, Marina mall and so on but the Abu Dhabi Mall is in fact, the heart of the city. The Abu Dhabi Mall is ideally located, it is connected to Beach Rotana Hotel and is a one-stop shop for tourists. With over 200 shops and an average of 40,000 visitors a day, this is more than just a shopping destination. Theres something in store for everyone, kids, adults, movie buffs and gastronomes; everyone will find a reason to love the place and keep coming back for more. Theres plenty shopping here too with outlets like Paris Gallery (perfumes, cosmetics, sunglasses, handbags and jewellery), Jashanmal, Grand Stores (department stores), Carolina Herrera, Zara and H&M (fashion and style) or Marina Furniture and The One (home interior and furniture).
5. Mercato Shopping Mall, Dubai-
Area- 2.4 million square feet
When in Dubai, a visit to the Mercato Shopping Mall, will make you feel like you’re shopping in Italy. It will awe you with its impressive Italian architecture and transports you back to the Renaissance period with details like picturesque cobbled streets, charming piazzas and authentic Tuscan and Venetian features. Located in the prime Jumeirah Beach Road, this mall will offer you not only a great shopping experience but also great ambience that will make it unforgettable. The shopping here is good too with over 140 shops and many international brands to choose from; this place is an attraction for tourists and Dubai residents alike. Theres something in store for kids too, you can keep them entertained at Fun City while you catch a movie or shop for groceries. Wine, Dine, or shop till you drop, at Mercato be certain you will have a gala time.
4. Festival Waterfront Centre, Dubai-
Area- 2 million square feet
Anyone planning a visit to this grand place, make sure you wear your most comfortable pair of shoes. The word massive was probably coined to describe this place in the truest sense of the term. Aptly called a retail resort, the mall is spread over 2m sq. ft area that encompasses UAE’s most exciting shopping, dining and recreational experiences. Not only shopping, but you can be enthralled by many other aspects here like man-made canals and abra rides or the origami-inspired cubist fountain that doubles as a grand staircase. For people who eat, breathe and live to shop, this is the place for you; Festival includes 600 stores – 25 of them ‘anchor stores’ – 100 restaurants and cafes, outdoor performance spaces, three enormous hotels and a golf resort. When in Festival City, you wont feel like going home.
3. BurJuman Mall, Dubai-
Shops- over 300
Area- 2.8 million square feet
You cannot go to Dubai, and not go to BurJuman Mall. This place is iconic in its own right as it is the oldest mall in Dubai. Being old doesn’t mean outdated, as BurJuman won 2 MAXI Merit awards and also Mall of the Year award at the prestigious 1st Retail Middle East Awards. BurJuman boasts of 2.8 million square feet which includes a lot of things like shopping mall, business tower, hotel suites and duplex residences. The mall alone comprises over 800,000 square feet. 300 stores, over 40 restaurants and cafes are all crowd-pullers that never cease to surprise you. BurJuman is also the hub of luxury, wherein you will find almost all luxury brands under one roof; the likes of Saks Fifth Avenue, Louis Vuitton, Dior, Chanel, Hermes, Valentino, Dolce and Gabbana, Versace, Fendi, Cartier, Van Cleef & Arpels, Just Cavalli, and many more can be found at the BurJuman.
2. Mall of the Emirates, Dubai-
Area- 2.4 million sq feet
What can be said about the great Mall of the Emirates? Lets begin by saying, it was named the World’s Leading New Shopping Mall at the World Travel Awards in London. If this doesn’t say it all then perhaps I should elaborate on why this is one of the biggest and best malls in the world. This multi-level shopping centre has many floors bustling with luxury, high-fashion brands and haute couture in abundance. Mall of Emirates is home to more than 560 international brands, more than 700 stores and 11 anchor stores all perched on the massive area area of 234,479 sqm. It is also home to Middle East’s first indoor ski resort and snow park known as Ski Dubai. More than 90 restaurants make it a gastronomes heaven. Tourists should make Mall of Emirates a part of their itinerary without fail.
1. Dubai Mall,Dubai –
Area- 13 million square feet
Mall you may have seen umpteen, but you haven’t seen anything till you’ve set your sights on Dubai Mall. You don’t need to imagine what the king of malls would look like, just come to Dubai Mall and your imagination will be surprised at the sheer size and magnanimity of this place. Going by what facts state, the Dubai Mall is the world’s largest shopping mall based on total area and fourteenth largest by gross leasable area. Imagine shopping in a mall that houses 1200 stores, how many days would a girl need to visit each one of them? If you can catch up on your breathe after all the crazy shopping, or have some strength left in your body then there is more to do here. You can enjoy yourself sans a shopping spree to with options like a giant ice rink and aquarium and underwater zoo,a dino skeleton, Sega Republic indoor theme park and 150 food outlets to pick from. Last but not the least, Dubai Mall has the largest candy store in the world! No surprises here that Dubai Mall is in fact the worlds most-visited shopping destinations apart from being the largest in Dubai and the world.