Shopping online just doesn’t have the same festive holiday feeling!
Some people may say that malls are a dying breed and online shopping is the future, and to that I say: They will never die as long as I am on this earth. I love malls. Can they be a hassle sometimes? Sure. But there’s a ton of stores in one place and you can look at everything in person, right there in front of your face. You can know how it feels to walk around and hold something to decide if you want to buy it. What’s the online version of that–a picture? Just looking at a picture? That doesn’t get me very far. I don’t know what the actual size of that thing is! Perhaps the model in the photo is smaller than me, so I can’t get a good knowledge of how big a thing is. I don’t know! There’s no way of me knowing, and don’t tell me that they have measurements on websites because I refuse to incorporate math into my shopping.
There’s something magical about malls during the holiday season—being stressed out in a crowd of people but feeling lost and completely alone at the same time. It’s that special Christmas magic, baby. And look around! Everything is so decorated with holiday décor, it’s insane! This stupid mall looks RIDICULOUS! I can’t see this online! But I sure as heck can see it at the following locations.
WHERE: Los Angeles, California
Look at this spectacle. This is totally ridiculous. There’s a stage with live performances and dancing girls dressed up like Santa Claus and it looks like a Christmas circus. If I were to buy my mom a sweater on Amazon rather than dragging myself to Macy’s here instead, I’d miss out on all of this. Guess what they also have here? That’s right–a festive holiday trolley. And there’s snow every night, even though we’re in Southern California. And this year they even have Gwen Stefani signing CDs. Only in Hollywood, baby.
It’s the stuff that’ll make you step foot onto the premises and go, “What is happening here? Why are they doing this? Is this necessary?” And to that I say, it’s Christmas, and because it’s Christmas, who cares! This is the world we live in! Buy gifts and look at all of this! Let it both confuse you and brighten your day–I promise it will, unless you’re like, “I hate capitalism!” and to that I say, wow, why are you even reading this.
WHERE: London, England
Harrods looks like a mix between a Vegas casino and a palace. It looks like an elegant circus. Inside it’s a golden Egyptian palace, but don’t be fooled–it’s still a mall! Christmas at Harrod’s is a whole thing, and they offer a ton of services that other malls probably don’t, including Christmas bird orders (as in, your Christmas chicken dinner–not, as I had hoped, Christmas-themed bird decor), monogrammed hampers (food gift baskets, with your loved ones’ names on the labels), and customized Christmas ornaments made directly in-store by an actual homewares designer, Jayne Redmond, every weekend, until December 18, 2017. Oh, and also, the mall has an official Christmas Bear. His name is Bertie and he’s wearing holiday flannel and a little vest and I love him. A mall with an official plush bear is automatically a great mall.
Americana at Brand
WHERE: Glendale, California
Americana at Brand is touristy but lovely. It is outside, which is polarizing to some right off the bat because it is dependent on weather conditions, but here’s the thing: this place is worth it. It might be my favorite mall in the world. They’ve got a trolley, which I will NOT ride, as I am not a nerd, but appreciate it nonetheless as it really completes the holiday atmosphere. A trolley driving around during the holiday season just seems right. One that drives around during the other months, and is therefore just a trolley that is there for some reason, just seems annoying. However, at Christmas, it’s festive and right.
INSIDER TIPIt’s right next to another mall, the Glendale Galleria–two malls, one location. And it really does not get better than that, folks–not in my book, anyways.
Fondaco dei Tedeschi
WHERE: Venice, Italy
Here’s another mall placed smack dab in one of the most beautiful places you’ve ever seen, so even if you hate malls, you can probably still enjoy yourself. Fondaco Dei Tedeschi is one of the most famous buildings in Venice that began as a commercial trading center and now operates as: a mall. You’ll find a ton of luxury retail stores inside this building that looks less like a mall and more, once again, like a royal palace. On the ground floor, they sell authentic Venetian treasures and crafts, making it your best bet in Venice for souvenirs, as many of the souvenir shops around the city just sell knock-off things from other places. Oh, and the top floor is a terrace and event space.
WHERE: Paris, France
This mall in Paris will make you go, “This… can’t be a mall,” because it looks more like a palace, and during the holiday season, it looks like a Royal Christmas Palace. It’s full of “upmarket” (luxury) goods, so you’re not going to find regular stores in here, but as far as malls go, this castle-looking one certainly stands out. So, even if you’re not a fancy person with a fancy wallet, you’d probably still benefit from visiting this mall just because of how absolutely stunning it is. Is it a mall? Is it a kingdom? Who cares! It’s lovely!
WHERE: Copenhagen, Denmark
Here’s another mall that will make you go, “This… is a mall?” A trip to Denmark is not complete without visiting this fine and fancy mall, Illum, which boasts a mixture of luxury stores as well as regular stores, cafes, and even an Eataly food market on the ground floor–that’s right, this mall even sells groceries! (It literally does not get better than this, people, I’m serious.) Plus, on top of the mall, there’s a rooftop with restaurants and bars, overlooking the lovely Copenhagen streets–and giving you one of the best views of the city. Also, they have a dry cleaning service if suddenly you’re like, “I’m shopping but I also need some clothes professionally cleaned immediately.”
The Mall of America
WHERE: Bloomington, Minnesota
Welcome to chain store heaven. The Mall of America is what happens when a mall decides “You know what, I think I’d rather be a whole city” and so it becomes as large as a city but remains a mall. This mall has 4.2 million (!!!!!!!!!) square feet of retail space, and there are more than 400 stores in there. It is four times the size of a regular mall. It has a whole theme park in it. There are FLIGHT SIMULATORS. There’s an aquarium. Also, there are probably deals, because it also has stores. It’s a mall. It has its own tourism office–that’s how big it is. Needless to say, you’ll definitely be able to find things you need there. Otherwise, what are you looking for? Seriously, what??
WHERE: Houston, Texas
This mall is very big, which makes sense, because it’s Texas and they usually like big things. Anyways, this mall has two Macy’s stores, an ice skating rink, and a whole Westin Hotel inside of it. That’s right, there’s a hotel in this mall. Welcome to Texas, you can sleep at the mall. Don’t like shopping? Go ice skating.
King of Prussia Mall
WHERE: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
This mall has already labeled itself “the king” right there in the name, which is quite the statement… that it actually lives up to, because it’s the largest mall on the East Coast (it’s 3 million square feet and contains 400 shops). Also, during the holiday season, you can get a “Fastpass” for Santa Claus. That’s right–this mall is so damn large that it requires a Disneyland-esque feature to enable you to skip the massive line so that your child may take a photo with Santa more quickly.
West Edmonton Mall
WHERE: Alberta, Canada
This is the largest mall in North America. There are over 800 stores in this place, and it has the following things inside of it: a haunted house, a whole pirate ship, a water park, and an aquarium. It has made several world records, including “World’s Largest Indoor Lake” and “World’s Largest Indoor Amusement Park.” Here’s how we think this mall was created:
Inventor of the West Edmonton Mall: I want to make a mall!
Inventor of the West Edmonton Mall: I… don’t know what a mall is, so I am going to make it literally everything in the world!
Investors: Sounds good!