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A walk and a ride inside the biggest mall in the world

While Nairobi is catching up with the rest of the world with its fair share of malls in every corner of the city, it still has a long way to go to get to where Dubai Mall is. And it is not only Nairobi, but also the rest of the world.

Welcome to Dubai Mall, the world’s biggest mall. It is so big that visitors sometimes prefer to experience it on four wheels than on two legs.

Dubai Mall was built in 2008 and it covers a massive 13 million square feet of space which is equivalent in size to more than 50 football fields. Apart from its massive space it holds an impressive 1,200 stores.

The Mall has over 14,000 parking spaces across 3 car parks, with valet services and a car locator ticketing system.

The sprawling mall can sometimes instill fear because you have no idea where you are, but the good thing about it is that you can hire a red or black open-top plush leather-seated buggies that carry up to five people to take you around.


The mall is located in downtown Dubai and each week an estimated 1.2 million people walk in to shop or just check it out.

In 2012, Dubai Mall continued to hold the title of world’s most-visited shopping and leisure destination, and attracted more than 65 million visitors, an increase of more than 20 percent compared to the 54 million recorded in 2011 and in 2015 it had a whopping 92 million visitors.

Luxury brands from Chanel, Lui Viton, Amani, Dior are in abundance in all their dazzling glory with some favorites like Sephora, GAP, to Zarra also present.

The mall has different districts including Denim village, shoe district with thousands of shoes on sale. The shoe district covers 9,000 square metres which would take you several hours of browsing.

It is not only about retail shopping, the mall has a cinema complex with 22 mega screens holding more than 3,000 seats.

The writer outside the Burj Khalifa in downtown Dubai. The Burj Khalifa is the tallest building in the world. PHOTO | HILARY KIMUYU
The writer outside the Burj Khalifa in downtown Dubai. The Burj Khalifa is the tallest building in the world. PHOTO | HILARY KIMUYU


For the family outing the mall has a kidzania where children can realise their dreams by role playing whatever profession that comes in to their mind; from being a fire fighter, actor, doctors and many more professions.

There is also the aquarium and underwater zoo where you can view more than 33,000 aquatic animals. The viewing panel is the largest on earth.

From the view of the biggest window roof, you cannot miss the tallest building in the world The Burj Khalifa standing at 163 storeys high.

And if you are not tired you can take the high speed lift to the 124th floor to see the magnificent city, but be cautioned, tickets to the viewing deck are often sold months in advance.

The mall also has an Olympic size ice rink. Most visitors wait till night to see the magnificent and glorious Dubai fountain.

The fountain can spray water up to 150 metres high and has more than 6000 lighting projectors.