When the Soviet Union was dissolved and the new era of modern Russia began, shopping malls began to be developed in Moscow and in other cities.In the last century, Soviet people haven't had enough places to shop, with only small local stores in each area and several bigger (central) hypermarkets in the center of the cities. When the Soviet Union was dissolved and the new era of modern Russia began, shopping malls began to be developed in Moscow and in other cities. First of all, every city with a population of over one million inhabitants received several big malls, each with a gross leasable area of more than 100,000 square meters.
The international umbrella corporation, IKEA Group, was the pioneer of mall development in Russia, it created a unique concept of the modern shopping center for Russia. To the present date, it has constructed about fifteen Mega Malls in each of the biggest Russian cities. This company faced many problems with bureaucracy, which included several big scandals of the bribing of Russian officials, but Ikea got over it and now it is one the biggest owners of retail real estate.
Now, Moscow has become the new capital of malls and has more retail space than any other European city with 3 million of square meters. The capital of Russia has more than one hundred malls and several of them are the largest centers in Europe, like AviaPark mall.
Usually, Russian malls have a huge hypermarket, known as an anchor tenant. Auchan for example, is one the leading grocery chains from France. Also, these shopping malls offer entertainment features for their visitors, such as food courts (containing cafes and restaurants), movie theatres, ice rinks and children’s playgrounds.
I have to mention other popular tenants in Russian malls, which are worldwide famous fashion retailers: Zara, Bershka, H&M, and Tommy Hilfiger, as well as sports brands, such as Adidas and Reebok, plus DIY retailers, including OBI and Leroy Merlin.