Posted by: coastcontact | September 16, 2012

Shopping in London or Paris – It’s Really the Mall of America

We just visited London and Paris in the last week of August.  To our surprise many of the stores are the same brands we see at our local indoor upscale malls.  What a disappointment!

 Steven Erlanger wrote about this very same disappointment in his September 14, 2012 piece in the N.Y. Times.  His article titled “The Champs-Élysées, a Mall of America” points out that you can see the same old stores you saw back home on this boulevard that was supposed to be “the most beautiful avenue in the world.”  The same stores are also seen on Oxford Street and elsewhere in London.

You know – the Gap, Nike, Tommy Hilfiger, Abercrombie & Fitch, H&M, and Tiffany & Company.  The only stores missing were Macy’s and Neiman Marcus.

Champ Elysee next to McDonald’s

Mr. Erlanger’s article included pictures of street vendors selling junk from sidewalk blankets outside McDonald’s.  That is an accurate depiction.  The above photo was taken by me on August 30, 2012. 

There is a 15 minute wait for food service in McDonald’s and that busy store is short on available tables.  A 50 something French woman standing in front of me said she loves McDonald’s.

Actually the variety of unique retailers was more interesting in Toronto’s Eaton Centre.

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