Retail ecstasy in East London

By | Category: Travel destinations, Travel news

Nothing is as thrillingly satisfying or as efficient at relieving stress, as a delicious day mooching around the capital’s shops. Up until now, all the action has centred on the twin colossi of Bond Street and Westfield in Shepherd’s Bush (which attracted 26m visitors in 2010 alone). Fast forward to September 13th and it’s all change: Europe has a new fashion destination with the opening of Westfield Stratford City – a shiny, supersized £1.45 billion shopping mall next to the 2012 Olympic Village, that looks set to be as much a part of the London Olympic experience as the games themselves! In anticipation, CD Traveller lets you in on 10 things you need to know about the biggest urban shopping centre in Europe…

* Stratford City, East London’s shopping destination, is home to 70 restaurants, three hotels, a bowling alley and a cinema – as well as some 300 shops, including John Lewis, Waitrose and Marks & Spencer.

* Stratford City boasts the biggest window in the UK, at 16.5m. The window offers breathtaking views of the nearby Olympic stadium.

* Over 100,000 people are expected to turn up today –the opening day.

* Nicole Scherzinger – the US X Factor judge, hit singer/songwriter and squeeze of Lewis Hamilton –will officially launch Westfield Stratford City, with a live performance at a VIP event.

* Shoppers will walk alongside kinetic pavements that generate electricity as they are walked on!

* To take the stress out of shopping, a roaming concierge team will be on hand to help Westfield Stratford City shoppers find what they need.

* Alternatively you can download the Westfield Stratford City app – and start your shopping experience on your sofa at home. The app allows you to check bus and train times to Stratford, as well letting you in on the quickest route to your favourite store be it Primark or Prada.

* Travelling by tube to Stratford City couldn’t be easier: Stratford is served by the Central, Jubilee and DLR lines.

* Driving there? Again the gargantuan shopping centre aims to make everything easy. The Westfield Stratford City app not only tells you the best place to park (there’s 5,000 spaces to choose from in the car park) but (thanks to an automated number plate recognition) can find your car for you when you leave.

* The shopping mall covers 1.9 million square feet, so it’s not just your wallet that will get a work out…

Westfield (Shepherd's Bush) attracted 26m visitors in 2010

For more on Westfield Stratford City, visit http://uk.westfield.com/stratfordcity.

To read CD Traveller’s verdict on the capital’s newest – and Europe’s biggest – shopping centre, be sure to log onto the CD Traveller website later this week. One thing’s for sure: East London – traditionally one of the most deprived areas of the capital will never be the same again.

 

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