Shopping hullaba-Lulu! | Outlook Business
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Story in Pictures

Shopping hullaba-Lulu!
A look at the country’s largest shopping mall, in God’s Own Country

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If you thought Keralites like shopping only for jewellery, the EMKE Group is out to prove you wrong. Its promoter, Abu Dhabi-based Malayalee Yusuffali MA, recently opened India’s largest mall in Kochi. The Lulu Mall sprawls over 17 acres and offers 2.5 million sq ft of shopping space. Built at a cost of ₹1,600 crore, it is the 105th shopping centre launched by the group. The 100,000 people it can accommodate at a time can spend their time at 300 stores (including jewellery, of course) , a nine-screen multiplex, a five-star hotel, ice-skating rink and multiple prayer halls. The mall is expected to run up a power bill of 1.5 crore a month while the local Kalamassery municipality will earn an extra 8 crore in taxes. Despite the parking facility for over 3,000 cars, it has led to traffic snarls on the highway where it is located as visitors throng to see this retail wonder. Right now, it doesn’t matter if they’re merely gawking and not shopping — Yusuffali expects the mall to break even only after 22 long years.

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