A cool trivia fact is that 60 years ago the first shopping mall opened in the state of Minnesota. I am now an Amazon addict and going to the mall is very rare. In other countries unique types of malls are popular that offer more than just shopping a fun experience for family and friends to practice fellowship. Music and paintings can be found in Beirut to add art to the shopping experience. Germany, Qatar, and Thailand also are thriving with new shopping malls offering unique experiences for their consumers. America would be wise to study these trends.
- It was on the heels of the Lebanese Civil War that Tony Salamé launched Aishti. Now, 26 years and as many department stores later, he is also bringing in big-name contemporary art.
- Malls may be dying across the U.S., but in the grandiose desert capital of tiny, petro-rich Qatar, they are sprouting up left and right. Consider the 5.4-million-square-foot Mall of Qatar.
- Instead, after a three-year renovation, the central concrete-and-steel Bikinihaus — a former fashion-factory-cum-postwar-icon, which earned its nickname for its two-part structure and exposed midsection — has become a springboard for emerging talent.
“But abroad, the dying icon of American consumerism is now being reborn in the way Gruen originally intended — as a hub for community and cultural experiences, not just commerce.”