We live in a world where you can buy virtually anything you might want from the comfort of your own home. And while we certainly appreciate a good online shopping binge, you just can’t beat the real thing. Your shopping centre is more than just a shopping centre; it gives you the ability to interact on so many levels.
Would it surprise you to know that as a nation we are no longer visiting a shopping centre and just grabbing what we want then running? These days our shopping centres are not just about shops and selling but are all about providing a place to visit to try new things, offering one-stop shopping convenience, time saving services and a little bit of escapism. It’s not surprising that almost a third of shopping centre visitors use it as a destination to eat, drink and socialise.
These days it isn’t out of place to find services such as free Wi-Fi, free mobile phone charging points, wheelchair hire, baby change and breast feeding facilities, Click & Collect, Collect +, free events or a kid’s soft play area.
Why not bring friends or family along and discover some new and pleasurable experiences? Look on your shopping centres website and social media channels to find out about the latest pop ups, entertainment and shopping events. Many now have a calendar of year-round activity for all ages, including farmers markets, live music, character visits, cooking demonstrations and workshops.
Here are 10 reasons why your Shopping Centre is more than just a place to shop.
1. It’s the original one-stop-shop.
Buy a digital radio, a new wardrobe and a delicious cupcake – book a holiday, post a birthday card, get a manicure and get your iPad screen fixed, simultaneously.
Whether your shopping centre has a fully blown food court or a small selection of independent café’s or restaurant chains, there will be great food and fast food available, so whether you’re on the go or after a leisurely brunch, you certainly won’t starve.
3. It’s a prime people-watching hot spot.
A variety of shops mean a variety of different people. Look around for some fashion inspiration or just sit back and watch human behaviour at it’s best, or worst.
4. You can relax – yes really.
Your shopping centre could almost be a day spa. From hairdressers and nail salons to tanning shops and eyebrow threading bars – book back-to-back appointments and then head to the nearest massage chair if there is one on offer.
5. It’s dependable, whatever the weather.
Nothing kills an outdoor shopping trip like a bit of harsh weather. For obvious reasons, that problem becomes irrelevant on a trip to your shopping centre.
6. You will experience instant gratification.
Find what you want and take it home with you right away. No wait, no delivery charges and no having to take that little white card the postman put through your letterbox to the collections point at your post office.
7. You can have your great escape.
Get away, if only for a couple of hours, from daily obligations and responsibilities and enjoy some “me time” with your kindle and a coffee. Alternatively it makes “working from home” pretty easy if there is free Wi-Fi.
8. You’ll be entertained, for free.
For you, for the kids or just because you have a few hours to kill, why not try something new, and be entertained. No other retail venue can provide the level of entertainment a shopping centre can and at no cost to you.
9. Find a child-minder for £1.
Kids driving you crazy? For the price of £1 there will be some sort of fire engine, camper van, police car or aeroplane you can plonk your little ones on and zone out just a little bit while they enjoy the ride.
10. It gives you options.
From finding price comparisons and multi-tasking to throwing in the towel when you can’t find what you want and having afternoon tea instead. Your shopping centre will be whatever you need it to be, and more. Plus parking is super easy.
The Pavilions Shopping Centre houses over 50 great brands all under one roof, from everyday shops to jewellery stores, and even a post office for convenience. Stop off for a bite to eat at Cafe Creme, visit the Chinese Medical Centre for herbal treatments and acupuncture, have a manicure at Golden Nails and satisfy all your hardware needs at Timpson.
You’ll also find plenty of children’s rides for their amusement and Amazon lockers for all your Click and Collect needs, not to mention over 300 parking spaces.