While the concept of a mall being the pride of a community is hard to imagine, it is the reality in the town of Joao Pessoa in Brazil. The town’s largest mall, the Manaira Shopping Mall has significantly supported the local economy over the last three decades and is widely seen as the main entertainment attraction for many within and outside the town. Unsurprisingly, the mall is owned by one of the town’s own – the highly accomplished entrepreneur, Roberto Santiago. Born and raised in the city, Mr. Santiago has been quite eager to give back to his hometown, an undertaking that commenced with the development of the Manaira Shopping Mall.
Constructed in 1989, the Manaira Shopping Mall is now approaching on three decades of existence. Mr. Santiago decided to create the mall as a result of the growing incomes among the Brazilian public as a result of a booming economy. He saw that there was a need for a facility that would meet all the shopping and entertainment needs of the people of Joao Pessoa and consequently decided to construct a huge mall. Since then, the mall had significant construction work done to it again when it was expanded in 2013. To paint a picture of the scale of the Manaira shopping Mall, consider the fact that it still dwarfs many shopping malls even in the cities of Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro despite being constructed close to three decades ago.
The Manaira Shopping Mall lives up adequately to its primary purpose – providing a holistic shopping experience. The mall has hundreds of shopping stalls, ranging from those dealing in basic products such as grocery stores to those dealing in luxury products, such as fashion stores. Education is also sold at the mall as it features a bookstore and a fully-fledged school, the College of Higher Education of Paraiba.
However, Manaira Shopping Mall’s greatest attraction is the entertainment value that it offers. The mall truly has something for everyone. The gaming area within the mall features games for both children and adult, including a bowling area. Additionally, it features 13 movie theaters, some of which use 3-D technology for the best viewing experience. All these entertainment options are complemented by the diverse range of food options available at the mall. In addition to a large food court, there is also a big gourmet area for those looking for a finer dining experience.
Given the success of the Manaira Shopping Mall, Mr. Santiago has since developed another mall within the town of Joao Pessoa, the Mangeria Shopping Mall. Through the two malls, Mr. Santiago has significantly influenced the economy of Joao Pessoa for the better. In addition to employing hundreds within the town, real estate prices have significantly gone up due to the two large developments.