July 6, 2015

Summer Escape Plan: How to Make Use of Malls and Shopping Centers To Your Advantage

Photo: +Maricris G 

Staycationing? Then let's talk. Worn-out mom to another worn-out mom. When people mention either the Mall or Shopping Centers, which thought comes to your mind? Shopping right? Well, listen, that's already a given but if you think creatively and out of the box, you'll see that there is actually more to these shopping havens that you can take advantage of especially during the hottest season of the year, Summer! Think of it as your escape plan for beating the Summer heat and keeping your sanity intact. Remember, Kids are home all Summer. Good enough reason, no? I think so.

And here's more. Malls should not be just for shopping in your vocabulary any more. They have play areas for your young ones. Free wifi if you must need to catch up on some online work. And if you've got older kids, you can go shop-hopping with them. How fun is that? No guarantees you won't buy anything but at least you had fun with your kids. If not, you can chill at a Starbucks cafe or lounge at the mall's numerous lounging areas, with your favorite pretzels, preferably with your favorite coffee drink in hand. Maybe you can people-watch too. You didn't hear it from me, but it can be fun! I'm watching you!

Malls worth visiting in Charlotte:

North Lake Mall Fountain by main entrance / Photo: Yelp

North Lake Mall - Located in the Northwest side of Charlotte. It's right on the border close to Huntersville, Cornelius, Davidson and Concord. They've got the fountain by the entrance where children loves to play in - and preferably get wet - which as it should be. It's hot, they'll dry quick! (Just bring a change of clothes).

Other kid-friendly options: Movie theater and play area.

South Park Mall - Largest mall in Charlotte and located South side of Charlotte. Great restaurants with big signature brands to make your shopping experience memorable. The  mall where "shop until you drop" can become a reality. Doesn't offer much for kid fun but there's a lot there for their eyes to feast on.

Other kid-friendly options: Movie theater, Bookstore.

Carolina Place Mall - Not as big as North Lake or South Park Malls but is big enough for some big enough fun. Located on the busy side of Pineville, suburb of Charlotte, and close to the Ballantyne area where added fun can be had.

Other kid-friendly options: Play area, Movie Theater, Bookstore.

Concord Mills - Just a few hundred feet from Charlotte border, Concord Mills is the go-to-shopping haven for the certified shopaholics. It's also a hop away from Great Wolf Lodge for a one-stop-shop-whole-family entertainment experience.

Other kid-friendly options: Sea Life Aquarium, indoor American Carousel ride, The Speedpark, Movie theater and play area.

And here's an added fun. Do you want to get fit while at the mall?  You sure can! Try mall walking. Yes, mall walking. Oh why not? You want to get fit, here's your chance. Free air condition too. Simply take a couple of laps around the whole interior of the mall and that's it. Get the whole family to do it with you to make it more fun. Like I say, the family that walks together, gets fit together! 

Not up for the mall? Try...

Shopping Centers - They're worth adding to your ensemble. Even if it's only for cooling down yourselves at an ice cream, smoothies or frozen yogurt shop, these shopping centers have more to offer. Get out there on Saturdays. They usually have free live music to entertain the whole family.

Birkdale Village fountain/ Photo: City Beautiful 21 

Shopping Centers in Charlotte:
  • Charlotte Premium Outlets - For the shopaholics who are dealholics or discountholics.
  • Birkdale Village - A quaint upper class shopping center in the heart of  Huntersville with a water fountain made for a "get wet" fun for the kids and kids alike for the entire Summer. 
  • Rivergate shopping Center - The pride of South Tryon. A hop away from the border of SC. It is newly expanded with more stores to shop in and eat at. Their unique water fountain is always a crowd-pleaser especially with the kids.  
  • Stonecrest Shopping Center - Close to the heart of upscale Ballantyne. There's a lot here to see and great options even if it's only for window shopping. 

If you like these ideas, please share them in your favorite social media channels. When it's good, share it! 


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