Monday, August 14, 2006

Anaheim Plaza Shopping Center

Anaheim, California - 1973

The Broadway department store and parking lot at the Anaheim Plaza mall, in Southern California. Thanks very much to, Paul Engel, for directing me to these great shots! This one above is pretty as a postcard (though it's not). Paul added:
"The Broadway department store and the outdoor center opened in 1955 [online sources indicate 1954 --Keith]. Robinson’s opened in 1963. The mall was enclosed in the mid-70’s and did well up until the Bullock’s Fashion Square (1958) in Santa Ana was enlarged, enclosed, and renamed MainPlace Santa Ana in the mid-80s. Robinson’s abandoned their Anaheim store in favor of MainPlace and Anaheim Plaza started its slow decline. The Broadway closed in the late 90’s and the entire mall was bulldozed. Today, it’s a power center."

Anaheim Plaza in 1959

And here's a beautiful aerial view of the place. Additional background info on this mall and its "de-malling" redevelopment can be found at the Resource links below.

Mall history: 1954 - 1994 (redeveloped)
Current website: n/a
Current aerial view
Resource articles: 1, 2
Previous entries: none

(photos courtesy of the Online Archive of California)


Blogger Livemalls said...

That's a great looking Broadway! it has that old-fashioned, imposing department store look that you don't see much anymore.

Mon Aug 14, 08:13:00 PM  
Blogger Kitten wtw said...

Finally! You put a shopping center that I know very well. One of my first jobs was working at Robinsons in the late 80s. Some days my ex BF and I would go to the roof to make out. On a clear day you could see downtown LA.

Back in the day it was considered a fine place to shop.

Mon Aug 14, 09:05:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This center was a duplicate of the Panorama City Mall. That former Broadway store also a duplicate to this store as well (it is still open as a 2 story Wal-Mart - the third level is closed off but the escalators are still there!).

This shopping center I beleive closed in the early 90's. In the 80's, a Mervyn's department store was added to the center of the mall, and is actually still in operation today. You can see it in the aerial view.

I never had the chance of going to this store, but always saw it driving into Orange County. I remember after it closed it was immediately torn down, and seeing the skeleton of the store was something. This mall was torn down right before the widening of I-5, hence in the overview, that offramp for Loara St no longer exists.

Mon Aug 14, 10:53:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The site above details the mall, and has some pics from before it closed.

And these facts:
Originally opened in 1954.
One of the first regional malls in California.
Renovated and reopened in 1994.

Mon Aug 14, 10:57:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Er, Jeff, that link and info you shared in the 2nd comment is all pretty much in the post already. Short term memory loss? ;)

Keith, any inside shots of this place?

Mon Aug 14, 11:56:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Haha. I didnt see it. Im sorry.

There is one pic on that site that is of the interior, before it closed.

Tue Aug 15, 12:16:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Very OCish!

Tue Aug 15, 01:52:00 AM  
Blogger Keith said...

Anonymous #1: Interior shots (I'm assuming you meant vintage ones)? Stay tuned.

Jeff: Saw those pix, too. Just wish they had some aforementioned vintage era photos there (as in the '50s or '60s).

Kittenwtw said: "Finally! You put a shopping center that I know very well."

All you hadda do was ask. ;)

Tue Aug 15, 03:44:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Panorama Mall, in Panorama City is a duplicate of Anaheim Plaza that is still open. Its still one story but was enclosed at some point.

Check it out too on Live Local. Just type in Panorama City, CA and see this beautiful Broadway as a Wal-Mart

Tue Aug 15, 08:20:00 PM  
Blogger Scott Parsons said...

I may be wrong, but I somehow I remember this mall with orange strips on the outside.
Now it's this Disney-esque cartoon shopping center.
Speaking of Disney, once you saw this mall, you knew you were almost to Disneyland!

Wed Aug 16, 12:40:00 PM  
Blogger Cora said...

I like the stylish black and white colour scheme of the department store.

The before - after photos on the site of that real estate company are just sad, however. And the worst is that they actually seem to believe that the new look is an improvement.

Wed Aug 16, 05:34:00 PM  
Blogger Scott Parsons said...

It just dawned on me. Weinstocks, another Carter Hawley Hale division based in Sacramento CA, used the same building design. With the one exception: they were tiled bright yellow. Capwell's used red tile, perhaps The Broadway brown?

Wed Aug 16, 10:53:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

As Cora said, that black and white Broadway store is a knock-out. The clean, bold contrast is very classy -- it makes a strong statement that you are about to enter an elite shopping experience... there are no cheap frills here.

But what's with all the yellow posts in the parking lot? It reminds me of a drive-in theater with the speakers ripped out and the poles left over.

Looking at the link, I think the old Mervyn's was actually pretty cool looking considering when it was built.

Thu Aug 17, 01:55:00 AM  
Blogger Cora said...

See, I'm so used to pointless posts in parking lots (often painted yellow, so that drivers will see them) that I didn't even notice them until tkaye pointed them out.

Thu Aug 17, 05:50:00 PM  
Blogger Livemalls said...

Anthony Garcia emailed me today and told me about an apparent riot at this Broadway store when it closed.

He said that when this Broadway store closed in the mid-90s, there was a stampede up to the second floor where all the bargains were. The escalator broke and many people were trampled upon. I don't think anyone was killed but there were lots of injuries.

Fri Aug 18, 06:26:00 PM  
Blogger Kitten wtw said...

The Broadway use to have a nice restaurant on the second floor. I use to eat lunch there everyday when I worked Robinsons. Robinson's no longer had their restaurant. Anaheim Plaza was a nice place to shop till the late 80's. When Main Place opened, everyone jumped ship!

Thu Aug 24, 08:02:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is Nordstrom about the only department store anywhere left with a restaurant?

Thu Aug 24, 08:07:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

WOW! That's a great vintage photo!
I spent a good deal of time at this mall in the early 80s, from the time they added the Mervyns to the time all the rest was demolished.
Great to see the acres of orange groves all around, and the (long gone) vintage freestanding Ralphs there on the lower right.
When the Broadway closed up I remember reading that it and the Bullocks (Santa Ana Fashion Square, now MainPlace) and Buffums on North Main in Santa Ana were the first outposts of Los Angeles (and Long Beach) department stores in OC.

Fri Aug 25, 10:48:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I remember this plaza well. I saw Santa at The Broadway at least one year, about 1964 maybe, when we lived in Costa Mesa (1963-1967). Sorry to hear this is all torn down now, as is Fashion Square in Santa Ana. They also leveled the Harbor Center which used to be right behind our home in Costa Mesa, and the picture of what's in the new plaza makes me think they should have left the old center alone. Nothing but franchise now; gone are all the "Mom & Pop" stores. "Progress" just for progress's sake is pointless and does more harm than good, in my opinion.

Fri Sep 15, 08:52:00 PM  
Blogger csufin said...

Does anyone remember a small pizza parlor in the Anaheim Plaza that was there just about until the entire mall was closed down? I remember eating there with my brother while my mom shopped at The Broadway. Does anyone have photos of the interior of this mall?

Sun Sep 24, 04:53:00 AM  
Blogger Synthetrix said...

Great flashbacks! I used to take a bis from Loara High school to the Anaheim Plaza and then walk to Anaheim High from there for a Photgraphy Class in my senior year of high school in 1980. I would cruise through the mall on the way, stopping at Musicland and maybe Hickory Farms for samples.
I also remember going there for a nighttime teen dance they had there around 1977 on a Friday night.

Mon Oct 02, 11:55:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just needed to put some insight into this mall. I grew up in Anaheim. And I am old enough to tell you when it was built it was called "the Broadway Shopping Center". People came from miles away to shop there and yes the second floor resturant was famous for the biggest hot fudge sundae and thickest malts. I watched them build Disneyland. so I guess we all expected this wonderfull mall to be in Anaheim..So sad it's gone..It is part of my history..with little time left!

Sat Jul 07, 10:04:00 AM  
Blogger Craig Boyd said...

Thanks for the memories.

I also watched the "Broadway Shopping Center" being buile in 1955. I could see it very clearly from the roof of our house near the Disneyland Hotel. In 1963 I learned to drive in that parking lot on holidays when the shopping center was closed. There were no posts then, so there was plenty of room for error.

One memorable moment was when some of the Dodgers were making a personal appearance in the Broadway store. Frank Howard fell off the stage backwards in his chair, and Ron Fairly couldn't stop laughing for about ten minutes.

Sun Jul 08, 12:19:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

On its third floor Robinsons had a coffie shop called "The Round Robin" where we kids ate because we could not go into the fancy Tea Room. We got alot of our toys from both Broadway and Robinsons in the 1960/70s and shoes from Paul Allen. And it was always fun to play around the tall, funky fountian outside of Robinsons Anaheim. I miss it.

Sat Oct 06, 09:51:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Perry's pizza.

Fri Oct 17, 08:46:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The pizza shop was called Pizza D'Amore and had the best pizza! I ate it as a youngster and craved it and tried to eat it every week when I was pregnant. I have never found pizza that good - miss it and wish they where still around.

Fri Apr 03, 03:49:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sorry to find that this store and center are things of the past; we left Costa Mesa in 1967, but I know my late parents and I were shoppers at The Broadway Anaheim many times between 1963 and 1967, and I have a vague collection that I saw Santa there, maybe in 1965 or 1966. I was again in Costa Mesa in 2005 for the first time since 1967, and as you can imagine, I had no idea where I was; recognized very, very little. Broadway Center; Fashion Square in Santa Ana; Harbor Center in Costa Mesa, all long gone; South Coast Plaza wasn't quite a year old when we left in 1967, and even that was completely different. So much for progress, but please don't get me started on THAT topic...

Wed Jul 14, 08:44:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I only remember Anaheim Plaza in the later years just before it closed. But I clearly remember Pizza D'Amore, pizza by the slice. I spent a couple of hours at the Anaheim Library History Department and they had a wonderful file on just Anaheim Plaza from its building to its end. I have probably about 150 or 200 pictures of ads and captures of photos in newspapers, store directories, flyers, etc. Anyone want me to post this stuff somewhere?

Tue Jul 26, 03:52:00 PM  
Anonymous Steve F said...

Boy, does that picture of the Broadway bring back a lot of great memories. I grew up in Anaheim in the 60's and 70's and that Broadway and Mall was my favorite place to shop. The Mall had all of the great name stores in its day, like Robinson's, Silverwoods, Norm Meagers. It was so sad to watch the Mall slowing die in the early 90's. The new Anaheim Plaza can't hold a candle to the old Broadway Plaza. Every time when I'm in the area and I drive by the new Anaheim Plaza, I can't help but think back to old bygone Broadway Plaza era, it was such a great time to live in Anaheim

Fri Dec 09, 04:07:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

How far from the Disneyland Resort is this mall?


Fri Jun 01, 08:25:00 AM  
Blogger Steve F said...

The Anaheim Plaza was about a mile north of Disneyland on Euclid.

Fri Nov 23, 10:59:00 AM  
Anonymous Tony said...

I remember walking up Euclid in the Summer to go shopping at the Brodway Center. I remember they had records on the 2nd floor of Broadway. I also remember the Robinson's store, Norm Meagers, Silverwoods, Bonds and going over to the Sav-on across from Broadway in the back parking lot to get an ice cream cone. It's sad to see the place now. It looks like a cheap carnival of shops.

Wed May 08, 01:31:00 PM  
Blogger Steve F said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

Wed May 08, 04:29:00 PM  
Blogger Steve F said...

Tony... I can't have said it better myself. I remember as well shopping at the Broadway,Robinson's and Norm Megars, along with a lot of the other great stores in the Mall.. It was a classy shopping center in its day. It was sad to see it slowly go downhill in the 90's. It's too bad a lot of the young people of today didn't have a chance to see or shop at the Anaheim Plaza in its hay-day, it was quite the shopping center. It pains me to go by the new Anaheim Plaza today. It can't hold a candle to the old Anaheim Plaza.

Wed May 08, 07:39:00 PM  
Blogger OCessnaPilot said...

Did Pizza d'Amore continue doing business somewhere else after the mall changes?

Thu May 15, 06:44:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would also like to know if it does or did business anywhere else. I do know that they did also have a shop in Milford CT at the CT Post shopping center. I recently found out the same family owned both of the Pizza D'Mores with the awesome slices!

Thu Oct 23, 08:55:00 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

the news was bad i lived walk distance Mall we remember like 1989 was the place to be the sales were great Disneyland all i had before construction Plaza

Wed Jul 06, 06:10:00 PM  
Blogger SoCalPilot said...

Random evening and I thought of the Pizza D'amore. Interesting what has developed in all these years. I vaguely remember the older gentleman and what I think as a black apron. I know nostalgia makes things better in our memories but what I would give to have a slice with my 3 boys today. LOL

Mon Sep 26, 12:39:00 AM  
Blogger SoCalPilot said...

Just found out that the owner of the Pizza D'Amore was Carl Rizzo or at least he was one of the partners. There happens to be an 89 year old person by that name in Mission Viejo. Does that ring a bell for anyone who ate there?

Sun Oct 02, 07:17:00 PM  

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