Bluewater Shopping centre is well-known for being extraordinarily largest shopping centres and as a futuristic mini-city. It is situated 17.8 miles (28.6 km) east-southeast of London city; address is Bluewater, Greenhithe, Kent DA9 9ST. In addition to its architectural attraction, people will find its beautiful site very exciting. Millions of visits every year have made it one of the most sought-after shopping centres in the United Kingdom.
On 16 March 1999, Bluewater Shopping Centre started its journey with an aim of providing excellent service to the consumers by assembling prominent retailers and ensuring world-class facilities. It is the fourth largest shopping mall in the United Kingdom having a retailing area of 155,700 m2 (1,675,955 ft2) over two levels. Within this area, it is an excellent showcase of 330 retailing stores. The prominent fashion retailers are Armani Exchange, ALDO, Dune, Karen Millen, Miss Selfridge, AlbaRose Diamonds, Aspinal of London, BOSS, Austin Reed, L.K. Bennett, Reebok, BeaverBrooks, H&M, TESSUTI, Burton Menswear, Case, Charles Tyrwhitt and so on. There are other facilities are also available here, such as spa and pharmacy. For kids, there are many facilities including special boutiques shops, footwear and exciting adventure park.
On the other hand, forty restaurants and cafés have increased the quality of the shopping centre. Delicious foods from around the world including Asia, France, Mexican and Spain are available here; the main and mentionable restaurants are Giraffe, Byron Proper Hamburgers, Leon Naturally Fast Food, Zizzi, Wahaca, Comptoir Libanais, Jamie’s Italian, Fridays, Yo! Sushi and Cote Brasserie. Besides that, several confectionary and desserts stores have arranges their best quality products with eye-catching colours.
A luxurious and comfortable 13 screen multiplex cinema, namely Showcase, shows latest movies all day long. It is fully digital having six 3D screen including IMAX screen. For young driver aged at least 11 years old, there is a driving space to learn driving. Sega XD theatre has brought thrilling 4D experience for the kids. There are adequate cycle paths, a sensational boating lake and several exquisite picnic areas. However, parking spaces for 13,000 cars and 50 Coaches add facilities for every types of visitors.
The shape of Bluewater is triangular. The key objective is to make shopping stress-free with each anchor store at every corner linked by three different shopping malls. The anchor stores are John Lewis, Marks & Spencer and House of Fraser. These are three retailer giants having many departmental stores across the United Kindom. Their world-class products and adequate services positioned them at the top of retailer’s chart. The three different shopping malls are the Guildhall, the Rose Gallery and the Thames walk. The Guildhall offers classic high fashion and retail in addition to lifestyle stores and gourmet restaurants and cafes. The Rose Gallery, on the other hand, offers with prominent high street retailers and excellent fast food outlets. However, the Thames Walk offers high street fashions, cafes and entertainment as well.
This is a unique architectural environment. The inspiration behind it was an American civic architect, Eric Kuhne. He aimed to bring together the local folklore, English culture, and an environment of Kent. Bluewater's shopping malls are designed like balconied paths with ornamental balustrades on two floors. It is covered with glass-sided dome roofs. This permits natural light to enlighten the indoor. In addition to that, rotating aluminium vents on the roofs allows fresh air into the malls. The design of the roof is a unique based on traditional Kent oasthouse roofs.
Around the shop, there are seven lakes, a forest and 10,000 daffodils. Bluewater is dotted with tiny seating spots. The path of the River Thames goes through the limestone floor of the Thames walk. Several Shakespearean sonnets are engraved in the malls. Many prominent artists and sculptors have created fifty pieces of original art for Bluewater.
The Bluewater can be considered as both architectural and business success. Increasing number of visitors shows its success day by day.
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