What makes a Mauritian shopping mall popular?
Believe me or not, the discussion on this topic started at approximately 730am yesterday (Sunday), while a friend and myself were swimming at some 100m from the shore of Pereybere beach.
With the growing number of shopping malls, Mauritians have a much wider choice when they need to find a place to eat. While several world famous restaurants have now their own branch(es) in Mauritius, more importance is being given to food courts within shopping malls.
Months earlier, the Shoprite food court or that of Phoenix commercial centre were practically overcrowded most of the time. But ever since the opening of Bagatelle, the rules of the game have changed. The one with the best food court and sets of restaurants win. Consequently, the crowds moved to the largest shopping mall of the island while Cascavelle Shopping Mall is trying to attract people going through the western part of the island.
Existing shopping malls had to review their strategy. For example, food courts at Shoprite and Phoenix went through renovation works. Same for the food court at Super U, Grand Bay. With the construction of the La Croisette Shopping mall, the competition is going to be really tough in Grand Bay. As for Phoenix Les Halles, it reached a Game Over state a long time back.
Some weeks back, I accidentally came across another shopping mall some kilometres away from Goodlands. At noon on a Saturday, the “VIP Village Shopping Mall” was empty, except the few sales person and the security guards.
Personally, I find Mauritians more interested in spending some time with the family, around some nice food. Walking endlessly around the shopping malls and window shopping form part of the recreational activity and at the end of the day, the food matters the most.
What do you think?