Shopping malls have turned upside down the shopping culture of our society. Earlier the shopping as limited to shopping itself and now with the arrival of shopping malls, it is shopping, eating out or watching a movie all options available in the mall itself. Even though these spaces are not truly public and being privately owned, these spaces have a particular agenda and as such cannot truly function as public space and this affects the modern past-time of hanging out at the mall by stunting social interactions. Yet it undoubtedly allows social interactions though in a limited space and freedom. Shopping, watching movies, dating, simply lazing around, people especially the youth don’t even need a purpose to be in the shopping malls.
With more people turning to shopping malls, the advertisers has also turned their focus to shopping malls to capture attention. Mall branding has become one of the most popular branding options in non – traditional media format. Advertising over the Mall façade, in- shop branding, different mode of standees, exclusive racks, spot offers for products, setting up kiosks for product promotion, escalator branding and floor stickers are some of the most demanding media options in mall branding. The recent trend is the product launch of products exclusively at shopping malls in the ‘public spaces’ of malls. Most often these will have celebrity presence as well as related events like musical shows to gain more attention.
The possibility of mall branding lies in the factor that it is not just the city people who comes to the mall but many people from small towns also visit shopping malls to enjoy the shopping mall experience. Mall Branding helps you to connect with the target group when they are in relax mode. From watching movie, buying clothes to buying groceries, food outlets, etc. there are various reasons for people to visit the shopping malls. It is here the mall branding helps advertisers to take their product effectively to their targeted audience.
Catching up with the culture of shopping malls, in India also we have some of the finest shopping malls. Phoenix Palladium Mumbai, Oberoi Mall Mumbai, Infinity II Mumbai, Inorbit Mumbai, Select Citywalk Saket, Forum Mall Bengaluru, Lulu Mall Kochi, Express Avenue Mall Chennai, Phoenix Market City Chennai and DLF Emporio are some of the prominent and successful shopping malls in India. Let’s take a look at the few top shopping malls in southern India.
Billed as India’s biggest shopping mall, the Lulu Shopping Mall is built at a cost of over Rs.1,600 crore. Located at Edappally, at the intersection of NH-47, 17 and the Kochi by-pass, the mall has easy access to the Cochin International Airport as also the metro rail station. The mall opened to public in March 2013, is spread over 2.5 million sq ft of space (the space of 33 football fields) and is owned by EMKE group of United Arab Emirates (UAE) businessman M A Yousuf Ali, who hails from Kerala. The mall has nine theatres, 16 pairs of escalators and elevators. There is a 3,500-seat multi-cuisine food court and parking for 3,000 cars in the mall designed by UK-based consultants WS Atkins.
It is the 105th shopping splendour of the LuLu Group. The mall generated direct employment to around 8,000 people and to at least 20,000 indirectly. Lulu Mall provided a totally new shopping experience for not just the people of the state but also for tourists from abroad. The mall has the presence of most of the international brands. With more than 320 national and international brands and over 215 outlets, the mall can at a time hold 1 lakh customers. Besides a Marriott restaurant, there is a food court and 18 food counters, besides nine cinema screens with a total capacity of 2,250 seats.
Within a short span of time, Lulu Mall has become the new landmark of Kochi. The mall is spread over 17 acres, rising four levels. Malls are also entertainment zones, and Lulu has set aside 22,000 sq ft just for this. A 5,000 sq ft Ice Rink (South India’s first ice-skating rink), indoor climbing wall, a 5-D cinema hall, 12 lane bowling alleys, water rides and games arcades offer diverse engagements. For visitors from outside Kochi, there is Marriott’s 300- room hotel complete with a helipad. Within one year of operations, the mall witnessed the entry of 28 lakh vehicles and was visited by 2 crore people. Around 8 lakh expatriates including tourists and exchange students, have visited the mall in the same time. The mall has undoubtedly become Kerala’s most preferred shopping destination.
By introducing over 52 brands for the very first time to Kerala, Lulu Mall has changed the way people shop in Kerala. In short, Lulu Mall comes with everything that is required to whet the desire of a discerning shopper.
One of the earliest shopping malls to be operational in Kerala, Oberon Mall in Kochi was the first to offer the first taste of shopping culture to the people of Kochi. The mall was opened formally on 2 March 2009, though it was launched in 2008. The cost of construction of the mall is about Rs.1 billion. It is built on an area of 3,50,000 sq ft across five floors of shops and office spaces and covering grounds of up to 6 acres (2.4 ha). The first multiplex in Kerala is also housed at Oberon Mall.
Oberon Mall, the unique lifestyle centre is conceptualised, developed and promoted by the Oberon Group of Companies. The Mall has many leading national and international brands in retail, food and entertainment, all under one roof with ample car and two wheeler parking. With 8 anchor stores and more than 80 vanilla stores and kiosks, Oberon Mall houses some of the most sought after brands in Fashion, Fashion Accessories, Electronics, Lifestyle, etc., along with the finest Food Court, Fine Dining, Multiplex and the best in Entertainment and Leisure, including an international Spa.
In 2014, Sunil’s Celebrity International Wax Museum was opened at the third floor of Oberon Mall. The International Wax Museum has more than 40 statues displayed over an area of 20,000 sq ft. The sculptures of Mahathma Gandhi, M F Hussain, E K Nayanar, K Karunakaran, Baba Ramdev, Anna Hazare, Angelina Jolie, Albert Einstein,Bruce Lee, Baichung Bhutia and Christiano Ronaldo are some of the other prominent figures displayed in the museum. Oberon Mall recently spend about Rs.5 crore to revive the mall and introduced Oberon Chanta, a collection of 20 small stores on the third floor, which previously housed a home furniture store.
Oberon Mall was developed and promoted by the Oberon Group of Companies, India. The group founded in 1940 and headquartered in Cochin, has found a place for itself on the business map of the world, with a growing presence in the Middle East.The Flora Group of Hotels, promoted by the Group, has over the years, established itself as one of the finest names in Hospitality Services in the Middle East. The Group is expanding its operations to the Indian shores and as part of this, has now opened its Flora Airport Hotel, at Nedumbassery in Kochi.
Centre Square Mall
Centre Square Mall is a joint venture between Kshitij Venture Capital Fund & The Peevees Group. Kshitij Venture Capital Fund, advised by Everstone Capital is a 65 million USD, retail led real estate fund developing 3.6 million sq.ft of predominantly retail space, a majority of which is already operational across tier 1 & tier 2 cities in India. The Peevees group is owned & promoted by Rajya Sabha MP PV Abdul Wahab, also an industrialist with business presence in India & Middle East countries.
Centre Square Mall also houses food court with over 800 seating capacity, 11 screen multiplex with over 2100 seating capacity, hypermarket, departmental store and several national and international brands in its 5 floors of shopping space. It has also got a 3 level basement parking for over 500 cars & 500 two wheelers. Located at the heart of the city, at MG Road Kochi and with metro rail stations nearby, shoppers find it easy to reach Centre Square Mall. It truly is the epicenter of everything exciting! Though the mall is smaller than Lulu Mall in Edapally it has still has six floors of shopping, including a top-floor food court and bowling alley, as well as a cinema.
Nucleus Mall is located in the South end of the Kochi metro along the NH 47 and NH 49 at Maradu”. Officially opened to the public in November 2010, the mall is constructed and managed by ABAD Builders, a prominent builder of villas and apartments based in Kochi. The Mall has a total floor space of 280,000 sq ft spread over 6 floors. The Mall is India’s first LEED certified gold rated green mall and has also won Realty Plus Excellence Award for 2012 in the category of environment-friendly commercial project of the year in South India.
Apart from the food courts, 2 screen multiplex and national and international brand presence, the mall has also got a dedicated space of 7,500 sq ft gaming zone operated by Boomerang Game Ventures.
Sobha City Mall
Located at Puzhakkal, Thrissur Sobha City Mall is in the heart of Kerala’s largest integrated township ‘Sobha City’. With best-in-class retail and entertainment options, ‘Sobha City Mall’ has a built up area of approximately 4,50,000 sq ft, comprising of three floors of shopping space along with a basement for car parking. Located on the Thrissur - Guruvayoor State highway, the new mall is poised to serve customers not just from Thrissur but also from Kochi, Calicut and Palakkad and other nearby areas. The mall is designed to offer an array of retail, entertainment and recreation options with a 6 screen multiplex, restaurants, food court and a gaming arcade.
The Sobha City Township is spread over 55 acres is a unique sustainable integrated habitat where ‘Sobha City Mall’ will ably fulfil the retail, the entertainment and aspirational demands of the people of Thrissur and its vicinity. It provides about 2000 direct and indirect job opportunities to the local people. The Sobha City Mall houses over a 100 acclaimed brands apart from Marks & Spencer and Apple having exclusive outlets. On the entertainment front, the mall houses Inox cinemas- the first multiplex in Thrissur, with 6 unique theatres having a capacity to accommodate around 1400 people at a time. The 550-seater food court consists of 15 counters of Indian and international brands of various cuisines. Moreover, the ‘Sobha City Mall’ comes with a spacious parking facility that can accommodate around 700 vehicles. The mall design is kept shopper- friendly with single spine concept and a central atrium. The central spine has a lot of skylights which fill the interior spaces with ample natural light.
The prime attraction however remains to be the man-made lake of 6.5 acres which functionally is a rain water harvesting tank, fulfilling the water requirement of the entire development. The Sobha City Mall is strategically located by the lake to allow visitors to enjoy its breath-taking view. The lake deck acts as a vibrant space enhancing the overall shopping experience.
Opened in 2004, Forum mall in Koramangala, Bengaluru was the first full-fledged mall in the state and has now turned to be a landmark of the town. Built by the renowned Prestige Group, it is spread across 7,80,000 sq ft of futuristically designed shopping space and entertainment. Apart from the national and international brands it houses, the other attractions at Forum Mall includes a multi-storey book store, food court, 12 cinema halls with a seating capacity of 2,100 and other entertainment facilities. The mall is an attraction for tourists.
The Forum Mall Koramangala is a place one can go to for almost anything one wants to buy. The mall has everything from shoes to exercise equipment, from home furnishings to electronic goods, from books to video games! The crowd puller Landmark which houses everything from soft toys to office stationery to CDs, is a prime example of the complete experience that The Forum provides to its visitors. One can indulge one’s taste buds at Transit, KFC, Pizza Hut or the forever crowded Mac Donald’s the first one in the South. The transit, in fact, provides Bangaloreans with a never before experience. With its huge food court and eclectic cuisines, it can cater to almost every taste bud in the world! Global brands like Westside, Soch, Isis, Mustard, Weekender, Provogue and Benetton succeed in bringing contemporary world fashions to Bangalore and its beautiful people. The master builders also deserve the credit for being the first ones to bring the world renowned brand of Tommy Hilfiger to South India.
The Forum Mall Koramangala houses a multiplex, with 11 screens showing the latest movies - all this with stadium seating, wall-to-wall screens and mind blowing sound. This is an accomplishment the Prestige team is truly proud of. The building management systems, close circuit security, omputerised parking management systems, ATM machines, 100% generator backup, centralised air conditioning and line-in-music completes the loop, to offer a worldclass ‘view of the future’ ambience. The popularity of this mall is such that almost all the celebrities who visit the city of Bangalore make it a point to drop in here.
Spanning an area of 8.2 lakh sq ft, Orion Mall in Bengaluru is one of the largest malls in the city. Developed by Brigade Group, Orion Mall brand quickly established itself as a favourite spot for Indian and international retail brands. Located at Brigade Gateway Enclave, Orion mall has four floors of retail space which includes shopping zones, multiplex, food and dining which is spread across 55,000 sq ft including lakeside cafes. The mall also hosts exhibitions of automobiles, lifestyle brands which further attracts crowds. It has got a parking facility for 1,200 cars across two levels of the mall basement, and is also supported by the multi-level parking for 2,500 cars and 1,500 twowheelers. Besides a 11-screen, 2,800- seat PVR multiplex, the mall boasts of a 27-lane bowling centre — BluO and an 8,000 sq ft gaming centre – Time Zone.
In March 2016, Brigade Group successfully launched their second mall- Orion East Mall at Banaswadi Main Road, Bengaluru. The only mall in the 7 Km radius serving the upmarket localities of Frazer Town, Benson Town, HRBR Layout, Kammanahalli and prime residential areas, Orion East Mall has redefined the neighbourhood shopping mall experience in India.