In my previous company, I used to travel to Bangsar South for meetings, at least on a monthly basis. I was still based in Penang then. I think Bangsar South is a good area. There’s MidValley megamall just minutes away (though finding parking during lunch time is not so easy). Else, there are also may stalls with cheaper alternatives. In my last visit there to have a good breakfast with my ex-CEO, I even wrote an article after that. Read here: Bangsar South? Reasons and choices There’s an upcoming new mall called KL Gateway. It will open itself to competition from MidValley and of course all the other existing malls. There’s a recent article about it in themalaymailonline.com
With regards to competition, Michael Chee, Head of Asset Management at Suez Domain Sdn Bhd (developer for KL Gateway) has this to say, “You have to carve a niche, to be unique in terms of retail. It’s not just about a shopping mall anymore, it has to be more than retail therapy.” I support this statement and this is the reason why I feel that there will always be space for more malls, as long as they are not just another carbon copy of all the existing malls. People want choices, fresh ones please. According to him, the target group for KL Gateway would be the working, middle-class professionals and those from “affluent” neighbourhoods like Bangsar South, Damansara Heights, Seputeh and Taman Desa. He mentioned a few general brands like Daiso, H&M and Village Grocer plus the flagship of Korean fashion retailer The Twee. The occupancy rate for retailers is currently at 80 per cent. As long as there are enough choices, people would not visit once, feel a waste of time and tell all their friends.
Next would be something I would love to try myself. It will have automated car parking facilities. According to Michael, this will be the biggest of its kind in Southeast Asia and the second largest in the world. He explained, “You park your car in a lift and take a card which contains a 4-digit secret number, and after that the car is automatically parked at a bay. When you want to leave, just key in the number and the machine will tell you where the car is located.” There has been a few occasions that I had to spend some time looking for my car park space! I think this is also going to be a selling point because every friend I know hates to turn and turn and turn just to look for a car park. We are in a mall to shop! KL Gateway Mall will open to the public on March 2 this year. That’s less than 3 weeks away. Happy visiting and evaluating.
written on 12 Feb 2017
Next suggested article: My MUST have list for malls, both old and new