Valley Fair Shopping Center
Postcard view of "The Mall at Valley Fair." Here's the caption from the back:
"The Mall at Valley Fair, San Jose, California. This regional shopping center is one of the outstanding shopping centers serving the greater suburban area. Over 60 specialty stores and a large department store are located here."But before I go any further, read this Wikipedia snippet:
Valley Fair Mall is unique in that it replaced two separate 1950's era shopping centers. The original Valley Fair Shopping Center, opened in 1956, was confined to the eastern side of the property in San Jose. It was developed and anchored by Macy's and included roughly 40 other stores in an outdoor plaza. At the western side was another outdoor shopping center, Stevens Creek Plaza in Santa Clara. It was anchored by The Emporium and I. Magnin...And in 1998 it was renamed "Westfield Shoppingtown Valley Fair", then eventually they dropped the "Shoppingtown" altogether and simplified it to just "Westfield Valley Fair" in 2005.
In 1986, both centers were acquired and merged into one two-level enclosed mall by The Hahn Company, creating one of the most successful shopping centers in the country, called simply "Valley Fair".
So yeah, but anyway, back to our photo. Judging by the postcard caption (which does say San Jose) and the Wikipedia information above, I'm guessing (since the card itself isn't specific enough) that this is actually a photo of the original Valley Fair Shopping Center, before it became the Valley Fair Mall in 1986. If it is, then dating it, since it doesn't have a date on it, would probably put it around the '60s or '70s, I'd guess. But I could be off in my sleuthing here, I don't know.
At any rate it's a groovy view, and Macy's Valley Fair was certainly a very groovy shopping center in its day! From the rooftop "fair", with its carnival rides (which included a merry-go-round carousel, mini train, and a 40-foot Ferris Wheel!), to its brightly colored mosaic tiled "tower" (actually an exhaust system) that many fondly remember to this day (you can see some of it on the left side of the photo above), this was one cool place to shop and hang out! Read lots more about it at the resource links below.
Mall history: 1956 - 1986
Developer: R. H. May & Co. Inc.
Current website: here (redeveloped)
Current aerial view
Info from Wikipedia
Resource links: 1, 2, 3
Previous entries: none