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Shopping Malls in Victoria and beyond


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Poll: Best mall in Greater Victoria (30 member(s) have cast votes)

Best mall in Greater Victoria

  1. Westshore Town Centre (Can West Mall) (4 votes [4.94%])

    Percentage of vote: 4.94%

  2. Hillside Centre (20 votes [24.69%])

    Percentage of vote: 24.69%

  3. Mayfair Shopping Centre (30 votes [37.04%])

    Percentage of vote: 37.04%

  4. Bay Centre (Downtown) (24 votes [29.63%])

    Percentage of vote: 29.63%

  5. Tillicum Centre (2 votes [2.47%])

    Percentage of vote: 2.47%

  6. University Heights Shopping Centre (1 votes [1.23%])

    Percentage of vote: 1.23%

Vote Guests cannot vote

#21 Ms. B. Havin

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Posted 31 July 2009 - 01:59 PM

I can almost guarantee that University Heights will not get a single vote. Worst. Mall. Ever. The two brothers from Hong Kong that own it do not give a flying fornicate about the place, and even less about being a community partner.

I went there for the first (and certainly my last) time ever a couple of weeks ago. What a pit. So depressing - there's nothing there. It's like walking into a place that can't make up its mind: "Am I retail? No, not really. Am I a medical center with doctors' and dentists' offices? No, not that either. Am I offices? No, guess again!" and so on and so forth, ad nauseum.

A successful mall has to do this trick: it has to provide a sense of (good) variety, while simultaneously being sharply focused on one main thing.

There are successful malls that cater to consumers looking for low-end / discount products. Those malls might not be glamorous, but they can be really good. Then there are malls that cater to consumers looking for high-end products, usually around clothing, jewelry, personal electronics (i.e., not kitchen appliances!, more like Apple computers). Those can be really good, too.

The worst malls are the ones that think they can mix-and-match. They're unfocused and confusing. The luxury stores suffer from association with the discounters, and the discounters make the luxury goods look trashy.

But if you create a mall with lots and lots of variety that's focused, laser-like, on a particular consumer segment, it should be successful.

Phew, I must be in a sounding-off mood today. So unusual...!

That said, I can't think of a mall in Victoria that I like.
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#22 aastra

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Posted 31 July 2009 - 02:12 PM

Oakridge always seemed to me to be something akin to Hillside trying to be Mayfair. The Bay store there always reminded me of the Eaton's store at Tillicum.

Although I admit I'm not much of a maller.

#23 aastra

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Posted 31 July 2009 - 02:18 PM

I'd say Mayfair is the only mall in Victoria that has the potential to be a regional "destination" mall. It plays that role already, even if it still isn't quite up to the task.

A proper entrance at the Douglas/Finlayson corner and slick new section on the parking lot along Blanshard would do it.

#24 phx

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Posted 31 July 2009 - 09:05 PM

I don't consider University Heights to be a mall.

#25 VicHockeyFan

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Posted 31 July 2009 - 09:52 PM

I don't consider University Heights to be a mall.


Whatabout McKenzie Mall, that's something else.

#26 phx

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Posted 01 August 2009 - 07:19 AM

McKenzie Mall? Where is that?

#27 victorian fan

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Posted 01 August 2009 - 07:35 AM

^
McKenzie/Quadra?

#28 VicHockeyFan

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Posted 01 August 2009 - 08:01 AM

^
McKenzie/Quadra?


McKenzie and Shelbourne. It has no idea what it is.

It's mostly dental/medical now.



#29 Newlywednotnearlydead

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Posted 01 August 2009 - 08:19 AM

Mayfair has nicer stores, but Hillside wins because they have Bolen Books. I like being able to park myself in the bookstore while my wife looks at clothing stores.
I also like that they have Zellers if you need some cheap junk and Thrifty's for groceries.

I love University Heights mall, it has such a grandiose name for such a fetid stinkhole. You'd think a mall with two anchor tenants like Safeway and Home Despot would have some decent stores, but it's pretty much all crap. Bonus points for a website that appears to have been designed in 1996.

#30 Phil McAvity

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Posted 01 August 2009 - 11:16 AM

I voted for the Bay Centre for one reason-it's location, and since I don't own a vehicle getting to any of the other malls is a big hassle.
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#31 Savannah

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Posted 01 August 2009 - 12:54 PM

McKenzie and Shelbourne. It has no idea what it is.

It's mostly dental/medical now.


1595 McKenzie Avenue?

That's where my husband's business is!

He mentioned that it was actually called something "mall", but yes, it's mostly medical/dental/aesthetics with some offices and a pharmacy upstairs. It doesn't feel like a "mall" to me at all, but it doesn't feel like an office building, either.

#32 phx

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Posted 01 August 2009 - 01:39 PM

Oh, too bad McKenzie Mall isn't included in the poll.

I go to the Quiznos there periodically, yet never knew the "mall" had a name.

#33 VicHockeyFan

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Posted 01 August 2009 - 02:00 PM

1595 McKenzie Avenue?

He mentioned that it was actually called something "mall", but yes, it's mostly medical/dental/aesthetics with some offices and a pharmacy upstairs. It doesn't feel like a "mall" to me at all, but it doesn't feel like an office building, either.


Ya, it has or at least had, quite an open and airy entrance from the ground floor off the parkade. It had a fair amount of retail when it opened, including a great little deli on the SW corner that sold some great candy. And a Mr. Mikes upstairs.

#34 Holden West

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Posted 01 August 2009 - 02:15 PM

Our international team of mall qualification experts (IOME) based in The Hague, Netherlands is currently examining whether McKenzie mall qualifies for inclusion. One member, speaking off the record, hinted that the mall's status as a small, primarily medical office complex makes inclusion unlikely. An IOME subcommittee is flying out this week to examine the mall and their report should be forthcoming.
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-City of Victoria website, 2009

#35 Jill

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Posted 01 August 2009 - 02:57 PM

Ya, it has or at least had, quite an open and airy entrance from the ground floor off the parkade. It had a fair amount of retail when it opened, including a great little deli on the SW corner that sold some great candy. And a Mr. Mikes upstairs.


I think the words "open and airy" are automatically cancelled out by "off the parkade". If this is, in fact, a mall, then it manages to out-lame University Heights by at least ten points.

#36 VicHockeyFan

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Posted 01 August 2009 - 03:13 PM

I'll have you know, that before the walk-in medical clinic opened in the bottom level and made for more cars in the way on Sunday afternoons, that parkade was the best place for us kids to play pick-up ball hockey, in an "all-weather" setting. Although some rain did come through the gaps in the parkade slabs above, but not much. We never lobbied for better lighting than the lame florescents on the ceiling (advantage shooter, better keep your eye on the ball goaltender!), but then again, no cops or mall owners ever showed up to shoo us away. It was a simpler time.

#37 phx

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Posted 01 August 2009 - 07:13 PM

The IOME will be seeing McKenzie Mall for themselves, but here are some pictures for those of you not able to make a site visit due to not being on expense accounts.

Picture 1 is the sign at the corner of Shellbourne and McKenzie, with "McKenzie Professional Centre" prominently displayed.



Picture 2 is looking down the side of the building, showing a sign directing you through the parkade to the mall.



Picture 3 is the mall entrance!



#38 VicHockeyFan

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Posted 01 August 2009 - 07:34 PM

Picture 3 is the mall entrance!


See that open and airy entrance! With the great open-riser stairs? That's no purpose-built office-medical-dental place!

...they had lower-case letters on mALL and eNTRANCE before it was cool!

#39 Holden West

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Posted 01 August 2009 - 07:58 PM

Hmm...McKenzie might qualify technically as a mall seeing as it has a barber and Quiznos. And yes, the lower case letters give it authentic retro-coolness points. But it has about the same chance of winning this competition as would Tracy in the "most musically talented member of the Partridge Family" contest.
"Beaver, ahoy!""The bridge is like a magnet, attracting both pedestrians and over 30,000 vehicles daily who enjoy the views of Victoria's harbour. The skyline may change, but "Big Blue" as some call it, will always be there."
-City of Victoria website, 2009

#40 gumgum

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Posted 01 August 2009 - 08:07 PM

Nonono. If the majority of units are health services and/ or office, it should be disqualified.

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