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The mall the merrier as massive new shopping center opens in the Bronx

The Bronx welcomes the Mall at Bay Plaza this week. The massive Art Deco-inspired shopping complex, featuring a brand new Macy's, will be city's first indoor, suburban-style mall in forty years.

The new Macy's department store in the Mall at Bay Plaza is the retail giant's first store built from the ground up in more than three decades.
Get ready to shop ’til you drop — without leaving the Bronx.

The first indoor, suburban-style mall built in New York City in 40 years is set to open its doors on Thursday.

The massive Mall at Bay Plaza in Baychester is set to change the way Bronxites shop, bringing several high-end retailers who will be making their first appearance in the borough.

What we wanted to put here was something that was indicative of the latest styles, the latest fashions, the things that people want.
“This is a totally new shopping experience for the Bronx,” said Sam Shalem, 69, chairman and CEO of Prestige Properties. “This is quality shopping that this area was missing all of these years.”

After two years and $300 million in construction costs, Shalem says the three-story, 780,000-square-foot Bay Plaza retail center is ready to welcome the public into its Art Deco-inspired interior.

Shalem’s Manhattan-based Prestige Properties also owns and operates the adjacent Bay Plaza Shopping Center, which features several large box stores such as K-Mart, Staples and Barnes and Noble.

The mall will feature bizzes ordinarily associated with the other boroughs.

The likes of H&M, Ulta, Forever 21 and Michael Kors line these marbled walkways, anchored by an existing JC Penney store and a gleaming new 160,000-square-foot Macy’s.

“The mall is going to be a great destination for customers to come to,” Gerard Guichard, 36, the store manager of the new Macy’s, told the Daily News on Wednesday. “What we wanted to put here was something that was indicative of the latest styles, the latest fashions, the things that people want.”

This is a totally new shopping experience for the Bronx.
The surrounding shops, 71% of which will be occupied for the grand opening, will be complemented by an 800-seat food court and four sit-down restaurants including the borough’s first Olive Garden and a Red Robin burger joint.

The beautifully manicured Macy’s, adorned in marble, glass and subtle LED lighting, is the centerpiece of the new mega-structure; it’s also the first ground-up project the Cincinnati-based retailer has undertaken in more than three decades.

The borough’s only other Macy’s store opened in Parkchester, in 1941, and was the company’s first branch location outside of its Herald Square headquarters.

And the new store was quick to embrace its surroundings.

Almost 90% of the Macy’s employees are Bronx residents — many of whom live in nearby residential areas such as Co-op City, Guichard said.

“We’re incredibly excited to be here,” Guichard said. “This is Macy’s re-dedication — to New York City and the Bronx and the community.”

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