Dubai Consumer Mirror

Friday, December 26, 2008

Malls in Dubai

Malls are, without a doubt, the main shopping destinations in Dubai. Malls are covered and air conditioned. Most malls have proper food courts and because more and more of them are popping up everywhere, mall parking isn't becoming an issue anymore (except if you are located in Bur Dubai)

However, many malls claim they are the 'ultimate' shopping destination and promise a 'perfect' shopping experience. I think many still need a lot of work to do. Some more than others.

Here are a few things many malls might wanna consider:

Mercato: Basement Parking Pedestrian Crossing
The basement parking lot is a disaster waiting to happen. And i am not talking about the bottle-neck-narrow-single-entry/exit design here. I am not sure know who was in-charge of marcato's basement parking lot design and layout (or the one who signed it off), but i am 100% sure the dumb ass does not have any children. Its enough the stipulated lines can barely fit cars as they are, trying to get to your car with a shopping trolley or a baby stroller, on a busy day, can be an adrenalin-pumped adventure that can (and often does) end up with a fair amount of other car body-paint retouches.

Dubai Mall: Common seating areas/ rest benches
There are very very few places to rest your feet in Dubai Mall. Its funny when you think that someone decided to have a place thats 12 million sq ft wide, with hundreds of shops and countless number of attraction; you'd think someone would've thought a bit more about parents with children, elderly people or persons with special needs. Its doesn't require a rocket scientist.

Deira City Centre: Parking Wardens
Ok, I have a confession to make. Last time I was in Deira City Centre was 3 years ago and to be honest, I can't find a reason compelling enough for me to make the crossing to that part of town. Though i do remember most of my problems in that parking lot could've been easily resolved if there were people that can regulate traffic. From idiots driving in opposite direction, morons doubleparking/taking 2 parking spaces and jackasses with plain jackass driving attitude; on a bad day (Eid, public holiday...) finding a parking spot in Deira City Centre sometimes requires the strength, wits and stamina of a spartan gladitor.

So guys, what do you think?


  • I agree with everything you've said.

    Some of the other smaller malls along Beach Road have unbelievably narrow entrances too, with almost 90 degree turns...and walls covered with car paint where people didn't make it.

    I have another one to add to your list - the new Dubai Marina Mall will be charging for parking, something I'm vehemently against. You're going to their mall to spend money - to be charged to do so is not acceptable.

    By Blogger Seabee, at December 27, 2008 at 6:45 PM  

  • I'm probably one of those few people who decide to park outside the mall (which is why I was a bit late when we went to watch Cloverfield if you recall!)

    Haven't been to Dubai Mall... but no seating? Festival City is abundant with seats. They should borrow some

    By Blogger KJ, at December 28, 2008 at 1:02 AM  

  • A sick city is a city with Mall. When the city starts building more malls it will loose it's ability to be a livable city and it will be sick.
    A livable city is when the citizens shop, stroll, and socialize on the sidewalks and the streets.

    By Blogger Emad Salameh, at December 28, 2008 at 2:01 AM  

  • Seabee: Know something .. i have a feeling Emaar Malls will be charging for parking for all its malls. Including Dubai mall... did you notice the access control points at every exit?

    KJ - I like fesitval city. I was telling my wife the other day how this place is actually well planned and thought of.

    Emad... wo leish m3asseb haik? A3sabak ya zalameh, el deniya mush mistahleh.

    Though I do hate the entire concept of “malls”, in Dubai, souks and streets shops are struggling with increasing lack of parking spaces, chocking traffic, shoppers not wanting to be grilled by Dubai’s unbearable weather most year around, and needless to say the crazy rents. That is why malls are becoming a better option/solution for retailers.

    Also, many mall developers (the newer ones) are addressing this and making more effort to replicate the outdoor/street shops experience with horizontal layouts, natural lighting solutions (daylight) during the day and with interior decoration themes.

    If you ever come to Dubai, try visiting places like Mercato, Dubai mall or Dubai Festival city… and its also green.

    By Blogger moryarti, at December 28, 2008 at 8:35 AM  

  • i think the marina mall has paid parking to ensure that mostly ppl living in the vicinity of the mall i.e. marina residents frequent the mall... u know to create some exclusivity bluuuuh :)

    By Anonymous MT, at December 29, 2008 at 4:15 PM  

  • I do have to agree with the good comments about Festival City. It is a thoroughly well designed and thought-out mall. Especially on the edge of business bay it avoids all the traffic you usually find in the internal city roads of Dubai.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at December 30, 2008 at 11:56 AM  

  • It could be a while before Dubai Marina Mall charges for parking, at least that's what it sounded like last time I was there.

    By Anonymous Dubai Marina Mall, at March 8, 2009 at 10:42 PM  

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