Monday, September 11, 2006

International Malls: Park Royal Shopping Centre

West Vancouver, B.C., Canada - circa 1961

International globetrotting time, friends! We take a moment's break from American malls for this great Canadian postcard I just couldn't resist sharing today. Big thanks to MOA reader, Jason Tribiger, for this great submission! Here's the caption from the back:
"Western Canada's Largest shopping centre. Park Royal is only minutes from downtown Vancouver. Featuring Woodward's and Eaton's department stores. 70 fine specialty shops, bowling centre and air-conditioned mall."
I've also included a large shot (below) of the interior photo from the postcard, because I wanted to be able to study it in more detail and really appreciate it.

I like looking at non-U.S. malls now and then. It's a fascinating study of comparison, and you generally find in the end, that they don't really differ all that much in most cases. A mall is a mall, is a mall, to coin a phrase. And in a way, doesn't that help bring us all just a little bit closer together, no matter what part of the world we're from? Well, I'd like to think so anyway. :) The shopping mall as cultural common denominator!

Mall history: 1950 - present
Current website: here
Current aerial view
Info from Wikipedia
Previous entries: none


Blogger BIGMallrat said...

Wow... this is great. Last time I was at Park Royal was in the Eighties. It was huge, then. More like three shopping centers all connected together. Too bad Eatons and Woodies are both gone.

Mon Sep 11, 01:48:00 PM  
Anonymous didi said...

Wasn't Eatons bought out by Sears so is that what it is now? And what is the Woodies at this present time at this location?

Mon Sep 11, 02:32:00 PM  
Anonymous Sean Caldwell said...

I'm a first time comment-er, long time reader. I love this site and I was wondering if I'm the only one annoyed that Macy's is taking over so many other stores and renaming them?

Mon Sep 11, 03:24:00 PM  
Blogger hushpuppy said...

I'll bet Ricky's Pancake and Chicken House was a GREAT place to take the family to dinner!

And yes, Sean, many of us are VERY annoyed that Macy's is unceremoniously stomping on so many historic and beloved department store names.

Mon Sep 11, 05:46:00 PM  
Anonymous Matt said...

For me, the simpler, the better. Sometimes I don't like the malls I walk through to be so 'noisy' and cluttered. Those Canadians sure know what my tastes are with this one.

I wonder, that 'Super Valu' in the interior shot. (which is my favorite on this card), if they're any relation to the supermarket of the came name that was so prevalent in the U.S.?

Sean: Welcome to the family. I'm almost coming on a year of following this blog. It really stirs up memories of my childhood, hitting the old malls, the K-marts and what have you from my youth. Back then, malls had more character, and each one has its own history and stories within, even the ones that now sit dormant. It's a shame so many have gotten renovated, and many more have been shuttered down entirely due to bigger malls, and the onslaught of 'big box' and 'lifestyle' centers. That's why I follow this share my memories and thoughts on malls I missed before I was born, and to read others' thoughts and memories of the malls of their pasts.

As for the whole Macy's debacle, it is also a shame that in the name of the almighty dollar, Federated does away with all those classic nameplates just to save $10million in advertising spending. Give me a break! Now I know how the people in Chicago feel. Many Wisconsinites (and myself even at age 13 then) felt the same way when H.C. Prange Co. was snatched up by Younkers in 1992 (and again 4 years later with PrangeWay's demise....the last remnants the company which had been spun off during Prange's huge 1990 Ch 11 bankruptcy) That was the end of an era in Wisconsin retailing history.

Mon Sep 11, 05:50:00 PM  
Blogger Cora said...

Oh, look it's a Bata Shoes shop!

By the way, Keith, if you're interested, my parents have a few photos of Singapore malls and department stores in the early 1980s somewhere. Mainly exterior shots, though.

Mon Sep 11, 06:22:00 PM  
Anonymous Jeff said...

Canadian Malls have a lot of stores you cannot find in the states. Canadian chains are interesting.

I was at a few malls in June, one just outside Toronto (Anchored by Sears and some other Canadian chains) and at Centre Eaton in Montreal, where there is no anchor but is a bustling mall nonetheless.

Mon Sep 11, 06:44:00 PM  
Anonymous Jay said...

Looking at the current directory I've noticed that the Super Valu is still there! I thought they were long gone but after doing a bit of research they still have some locations operating in British Columbia. It is not the same as the American one.

Anyways its obvious lots has changed since and the only major department store is the Bay with plenty of other smaller stores like Linens n Things, Future Shop, Winners and others.

Mon Sep 11, 07:18:00 PM  
Blogger BIGMallrat said...

Sears did buy out Eatons and Eatons is no more. Their motto towards the end was "Good Satisfactory or Your Money Back."
Woodies went bankrupt and The Bay bought many of their assets.
The Canadian department store consolidation parallelled the US version. The Bay and Sears are major players, with Holt Renfrew and Zellers close behind. Of course, there are a number of regional retailers, too.

Tue Sep 12, 02:53:00 PM  
Blogger BIGMallrat said...

that's GOODS Satisfactory...

Tue Sep 12, 02:53:00 PM  
Anonymous didi said...

Interesting that Canada still have regional chains when here they have been all but eliminated.

Thu Sep 14, 02:24:00 PM  

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