India’s Biggest Shopping Mall to Open in Kerala
India’s biggest shopping mall will open in the country’s top consumer spending state of Kerala on Sunday.
Chief Minister Oommen Chandy will inaugurate the sprawling ₹ 16 billion mall built by UAE – based retail group Lulu in the state’s commercial hub of Cochin. The mall will start functioning from 4pm on the same day.
Located at Edapally bypass, the 2.5 million sq ft Lulu Shopping Mall spread across 17 acres is a prime shopping and entertainment destination with 320 retail outlets, a food court and 18 food counters, nine cinema screens, an indoor ice – skating rink, bowling alleys, water rides and electronic games.
The mall will have the presence of more than 300 international and national brands. Of these 46 are coming to the state for the first time. Another 30 new brands including Walt Disney and Barbie will come to the mall soon.
The food court in the mall can accommodate 3500 people at a time while the cinema screens have a capacity of 2250. A 300 – room hotel to be managed by globally leading hospitality group JW Marriott Hotels is scheduled to open in another four months.
One of the biggest attractions of the mall is a family experiment centre, which will have a 5 – D cinema hall and other entertainment amusement facilities. The mall has set apart 55,000 sq ft exclusively for kids. Other facilities include bank, ATMs, money exchange, pharmacy, travel and holiday desk etc. The mall designed by WS Atkins, UK based consultants, has a parking capacity for 3000 cars with easy access from all the main roads. Well placed escalators, elevators, travelators and walkways make it easy for shoppers, diners, and fun lovers to get from one point of the mall to another.
This is the first retail venture of the Lulu retail group in India. The management is expecting 50,000 visitors a day.
The initial revenue estimated is ₹ 800 million to ₹ 1 billion a month. The Mall will generate 8000 direct jobs and more than 20000 indirect job opportunities.
The company hopes to do well as they have a strong brand loyalty in Kerala because of its connection with the Gulf, where the Lulu has most of its outlets.
Curiously, the consumer expenditure of Keralites have been showing a rise since the Gulf boom that saw more than three million Keralites migrating to various countries in the Middle East. The average monthly consumer expenditure of a person in the rural sector of Kerala in 1970s was almost close to that of the all – India average. However, from 1980 onwards, it began to exceed that of the country and in 2002, it reached a level that exceeded the national average by 66 per cent.
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