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The Mall of America
The Mall of America welcomes more visitors each year than the combined populations of North Dakota, South Dakota, Iowa, and Canada.* The early skeptics who thought the mega-mall would be a “mega-disaster” have happily been proven wrong.
In 1982, Minnesota’s baseball and football teams, the Twins and the Vikings, moved from the Met Stadium in Bloomington to the Metrodome in downtown Minneapolis. Losing the stadium gave the city of Bloomington 78 acres of prime real estate. The land was located only a mile and a half from the Minneapolis/St. Paul International Airport and at the intersection of four major highways.
A vision for the Mall of America was born. In 1986, the Ghermezian brothers signed an agreement to develop the nation’s largest retail and entertainment complex. The Ghermezians had just completed building the world’s largest retail and entertainment center, the West Edmonton Mall in Alberta, Canada.
On June 14, 1989, ground was broken and three years of construction began. The Mall of America opened its doors on August 11, 1992. On that date, the 4.2-million-square-foot complex had 330 brand new stores open for business. It was the first time in history that the department store giants Bloomingdale’s, Macy’s, Nordstrom, and Sears were all together under one roof.
Despite the fact it is known for its awesome shopping (it now has more than 500 stores), the Mall of America is more than just a shopping mall. It is a retail and entertainment experience. You can see a movie at the thirteen-screen movie theater. If you like amusement parks, you’ll love Nickelodeon Universe, the nation’s largest indoor theme park. You can take a ride on the seven-story Ferris wheel or experience the water rush of the Log Chute. The Pepsi Orange Streak will take you on a fast-spinning, half-mile ride through the park.
Explore life underwater at SEA LIFE Minnesota, a 1.2 million gallon walk-through aquarium. Traveling 14 feet underwater in the 300-foot-long curved tunnel, you can experience breathtaking views of sharks, stingrays, and other “giants” of the sea. A great time for ocean enthusiasts of all ages!
Has all of that shopping and playing made you hungry? The Mall of America offers much more than a simple food court. There are 50 fast-food and sit-down restaurants in the mall. You could have lunch at Hot Indian and dinner at Cantina Laredo without leaving the building.
Do you desire a unique wedding? The Mall of America can meet those needs too. In the last 25 years, more than 7,500 couples have been married at the Chapel of Love.
The mega-mall continues to attract mega-visitors and generate mega-dollars. Over 40 million people visit the Mall of America each year. Its annual economic impact is almost $2 billion. The Mall of America is a mega-success.