Last weekend, my fiancee and I went to check out this newly open Westfield ‘Super Mall’ in West London, which is allegedly the biggest in-city Shopping Centre in Europe. UK has many other Shopping Centres that are bigger than this, for example Bluewater and Sheffield’s Meadowhall, but all of them are located out-city.

We have been passing by near the building site many many times throughout the year because it’s situated on the main route that we usually take from the Centre of London to our place.  As such, we literary witnessed the growth of this behemoth, and were anxious to see how it was going to become.  The development was not only consisting of this big shopping centre, but also a Tube Station, an Overground Train Station and a Bus Station !

The mall was opened about 2 weeks ago, and since it’s only 20 minutes drive-away, we decided to have a peek and to see what all the fuss is about.
My first impression came when I drove into the indoor car-park and tried to find a place to park the car.  At each junction, they install an LED sign that tells you if the car park is full or not, and if it’s not it will tell you how many spaces left, in addition it also tells you which row is for Disable and the direction of the Exit.  Impressive !

LED Sign at Westfield Car Park

LED Sign at Westfield Car Park

And then, as I was parking my car to one of the empty slot, I was thinking, how on earth that it knows how many places left ?  The answer was *up* there, on the ceiling, on top of each slot where they installed somekind of sensor.  Clever !

Car Park Sensor

Car Park Sensor

So we went inside to the mall (after taking a mental note of where I parked the car), and we were greeted with a very big Atrium.  When we looked up, we could see another level of the mall, and another one on top of that.  We actually didn’t know where to start :) So, we just started by turning right and walk that way.

Inside Westfield

Inside Westfield

Inside Westfield

Inside Westfield

Inside Westfield

Inside Westfield

Not long after that we found a corridor where the Toilets are.  Perfect we thought, because our bladder was almost bursting :)

Toilet Corridor

Toilet Corridor

Sign for Women

Sign for Women

and for Men

and for Men

Inside Men's Room

Inside Men

The Mall was full of your usual Highstreet Shops, from Next to House of Fraser, from Boots to Cards Galore, and from Tiffany’s to De Beers.  But my favorite was … the Apple Store !

Apple Store

Apple Store

Obviously I spent *quite* considerable amount of time in there.  I got my hands on the new Aluminium MacBooks, which I like a lot :)

Here, I will give a bit of warning, if you come with your friends, DON’T YOU EVER GO SEPARATE WAY, because unless you have agreed where and when to meet back again, you will NOT be able to phone and find out where they are !!!  The mobile network in that building SUCKS !  I had two mobiles with me, both had full bar of reception, and I couldn’t frecking phone my fiancee, everytime I tried it told me that the ‘Network is Busy’.  The same thing happened with SMS, I couldn’t send text message, it just hanged there on the outbox waiting to be sent.  At the end, after 30 minutes trying, I gave up and went down to the O2 store.  I asked one of the guy there whether it was only me or the network was really crap, and he confirmed that it’s true, and advised me to go OUTSIDE to get a clear signal ! What the …. !  At which point I just asked them if I could borrow their land-line to make a quick call, which they did.

Anyway, admittedly the place was really big.  It took us 6 hours just to go around 80% of the place, with only occasional visit inside some stores.  The Cinema hasn’t opened yet though (originally we were going to watch James Bond there too).  There are still many place we haven’t explored.  The food court was particularly interesting.

So, we vowed that we are going to come again, next time maybe a bit earlier so we have more time to explore, AND another thing is, we will come by public transport.  This is another warning, DON’T COME BY CAR if you don’t have ‘mucho dinero’, because you have to pay parking for £2 an hour.  We were there for 6 hours, so we paid …. £12 ! *painful*

All in all, it was quite an enjoyable afternoon (apart from when we couldn’t find each other), we will definitely come again regularly, especially because it is closer, hence cheaper to go there, compare to if we have to go to central London.

A little note for Indonesian readers, yes the Malls here are *tiny* compare to our multi-level Mega Mall, I know :)

For more photos, please visit my Flickr Page.

Have a good day !