The world’s largest shopping mall!! You must be thinking how big can it be, well… it’s big!
The Dubai Mall is a shopping mall in Dubai and the largest mall in the world by total area. Along with West Edmonton Mall in Canada, it is the nineteenth largest shopping mall in the world by gross leasable area. Located in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, it is part of the 20 billion dollar Downtown complex, and includes 1,200 shops. Can you imagine how many shops that is?! In 2011 it was the most visited building on the planet, attracting over 54 million visitors.
“The Dubai Mall contains more than 1,200 shops”
The Dubai Mall recorded 61,000 tickets sold for the Dubai Aquarium and Discovery Centre in the first five days, following its opening. The Dubai Mall hosted over 37 million visitors in 2009, and attracts more than 750,000 visitors every week., In 2010 it hosted 47 million, and saw footfall increase by around 27 percent over 2009, despite the economic crisis. In 2012, Dubai Mall continued to hold title of world’s most visited shopping and leisure destination, and attracted more than 65 million visitors, an increase of more than 20 percent compared to the 54 million recorded in 2011. It attracted more visitors than New York City with over 52 million tourists in 2012, and Los Angeles with 41 million. The numbers also surpass visitor arrivals to all landmark leisure destinations and theme parks in the world including Times Square (39.2 million), Central Park (38 million), and Niagara Falls (22.5 million). When I saw these numbers I was like WHAT?!?!?! I know its busy at the mall but this many people and compared to other attractions its unbelievable.
Over 1.2 million square meters (equivalent in size to more than 50 football fields), the Dubai Mall has a total internal floor area of 550.000 square meter (55 ha) and leasable space of 350.000 square meter (35 ha)
Then there is the Aquarium, also the world’s largest in a Mall. The Dubai Aquarium & Underwater Zoo was designed by Peddle Thorp and is managed by Emaar Entertainment. The aquarium, located in The Dubai Mall, showcases more than 300 species of marine animals, including sharks and rays. It’s so impressive when you stand in front of the big wall. It is even possible to walk through the tank. Its 270-degree acrylic walk through tunnel lets visitors see a variety of underwater animals up close. A special ‘lunar cyclic’ lighting system changes the ambience of the tank depending on the time of day.
The Underwater Zoo is located above the aquarium, and provides an interactive approach to educating children and visitors on the ecology and sustainability of marine life. The journey consists of three ecological zones: Rainforest, Rocky Shore, and Living Ocean, each of which features a variety of aquatic animals including penguins, crocodiles, piranhas, giant spider crabs, water rats, sea horses, and jellyfish amongst others.
If you thought that this was all than hold on because there is more. The Mall’s Dubai Ice Rink!! multi-purpose venue uses refrigeration technology to create a 38 mm ice bed, twice the thickness of an NHL ice rink. With a seating capacity of 350, Dubai Ice Rink is a family oriented attraction open to the general public. So if you like to skate on the ice, this is the place to be.
The Dubai Mall contains more than 1,200 shops. In October 2009 it was reported that the world’s largest candy store had opened in Dubai Mall. In June 2013, the Dubai Mall commenced its phase one of its expansion plan by increasing the total retail floor area by 100.000 square meters so as to accommodate more visitors. The project is set for completion for the beginning of 2017. I must say that I can’t wait until its done because that means even more shopping fun in Dubai!!!