South Africa is one of the countries with the most malls anywhere in the world. It has over 200 malls spread through its provinces and covering more than 24 million square metres. Because of the ever-growing needs of shoppers, the malls keep expanding as the years go by in the country.
With many large malls, South Africa has some facilities ranked amongst the top on the African continent. These malls have attracted shoppers, leisure seekers, and even tourists who troop into the different facilities each year with one need or the other. Here is a look at some of the biggest malls that the country has to offer.
Here Are The Biggest Malls In South Africa
1. Sandton City South Africa
- Capacity: 215,000 square meters
- Number of stores: Over 300
- Year Built: 1973
- Address: 83 Rivonia Rd, Sandhurst, Sandton, 2196, South Africa
- Town or City: Sandton, Johannesburg
- Opening and Closing Times: 9 am – 8 pm (Monday – Saturday), 9 am – 6 pm (Sunday & Public Holidays)
This mall is the largest in the whole of South Africa. It is an iconic trading center that attracts everyone from retailers to leisure seekers. The mall is located at Sandton Central Management District in Johannesburg. It is home to more than 300 shopping complexes that attract millions of visitors each year, counting from locals to tourists.
The mall was first built in 1973, and it is now partly a property of Liberty Holdings Limited, Liberty Two Degrees Limited, and Pareto Limited. It doesn’t matter what one is looking for; you can most possibly get it all under a single roof.
When it first started, the mall covered 50,000 square meters, and it had 120 stores. Today, it boasts of 215,000 square meters as it kept experiencing expansion through the years. It has over 300 stores, some of which are occupied by big brands worldwide, including Adidas, Louis Vuitton, and Wimpy, among many others. This makes it one of the biggest on the African continent.
In response to the Covid-19 pandemic that shut down most parts of the world at a time, the mall has since decided to adopt online shopping through Nedbank’s Avo super app.
2. Gateway Theatre of Shopping
- Capacity: 186,526 m2
- Number of stores: 460 stores
- Year Built: 1998
- Address: 1 Palm Blvd, Umhlanga Ridge, Umhlanga, 4021, South Africa
- Town or City: Umhlanga
- Opening and Closing Times: 9 am – 7 pm (Monday to Saturday), 9 am – 6 pm (Sunday & Holidays)
Gateway Theatre of Shopping used to be the third-largest mall in the whole of South Africa, and for now, it remains among the largest in Africa and one of the largest in the world. Beyond its size, it is considered to be one of the topmost malls in the world. The mall is located in the north of Durban, KwaZulu-Natal. Construction of the Old Mutual Property facility began in 1998, and by 2001, it was opened for use.
It covers well more than 186,526 square meters thanks to the numerous expansions in the close to 2 decades of its existence. The award-winning shopping facility has more than 460 stores and also 70 eateries, among other things, including parks, 18 movie theatres, and 6 Nouveau Theatres. One more thing that stands the mall out is the fact that it is home to one of the highest fountains on the continent. It has 12,000 spaces for parking.
Today, it houses some major brands in Africa and other parts of the world, including Zahra, making it a busy hub for more than 2 million people each year, either wanting to make purchases, take time to relax, or tourists.
3. Fourways Mall in Johannesburg
- Capacity: 178,000 square meters
- Number of stores: 400+
- Year Built: 1997
- Address: 11 Ruby Cl, Witkoppen, Sandton, 2068, South Africa
- Town or City: Sandton
- Opening and Closing Times: 9 am to 8 pm (Monday to Saturdays) 9 am to 6 pm (Sundays & Public holidays)
Before 2019, this mall was not among the biggest in South Africa as it only had a size of 85,000 square meters. However, it has since been expanded to cover a space of 178,000 square meters, making it the third-largest in the country. What is more fascinating is the fact that it is also located in Johannesburg. It currently belongs to the estate management company Accelerate Property Fund.
The mall boasts of more than 400 stores. It was first opened in 1997 before it was later relaunched as a bigger shopping facility in 2019 after a refurbishment gulped in multi-million rand, allowing it to have 250 new brands and stores to its existing ones. The mall also comes with 8,000 parking bays. What is fascinating is that you can access the parking space directly through flyovers from William Nicol and Witkoppen roads.
Just as one would expect of a big mall like this, there is hardly a thing one is looking for that you cant get, including food stores, fashion, electronics, health and beauty, homeware and décor, and anything else that cuts in between such as entertainment needs and much more for adults, kids, and pets.
4. Menlyn Park Shopping Centre
- Capacity: 177,000 square meters
- Number of stores: Over 500
- Year Built: 1979
- Address: Atterbury Road And Lois Ave, Menlyn, Pretoria, 0063, South Africa
- Town or City: Pretoria
- Opening and Closing Times: 9 am – 8 pm (Mondays to Saturdays), 9 am – 6 pm (Sundays & Public holidays)
Menlyn Park Shopping Centre is another fascinating shopping facility that lands as one of the biggest malls in South Africa with a space of 177,000. The four-storey mall has more than 500 stores, 8,250 parking bays, 16 parking entrances, and 12 parking exits. It is an award-winning shopping center that has been recognized internationally and houses many brands seen as exclusively international.
The mall was built in 1979, and then in 1988, it was expanded some more. In 1998, it saw more expansion and redesign. The major expansion and redesign that turned it into what we see today were carried out in 2016 when R2.5-billion was put in. In two years, the expansion and refurbishing of the mall were completed. It belongs to the development company Pareto. However, it was initially the property of the England company Old Mutual Properties from London.
5. Canal Walk in Cape Town
- Capacity: 141,000 square meters
- Number of stores: 400
- Year Built: 2000
- Address: Canal Walk, Century Blvd, Century City, Cape Town, 7446, South Africa
- Town or City: Cape Town
- Opening and Closing Times: 9 am to 9 pm (Monday to Sunday)
This mall has a capacity of 141,000 square meters, which makes it the fifth-largest in the country. It was built in 2000 in what has come to be referred to as Cape Venetian architecture. 80% of this mall is owned by Hyprop Investment Limited, while Ellerine Bros (Pty) Ltd owns 20%.
It is home to no less than 400 stores, cinemas, restaurants, and parks. More so, it has 7,000 parking bays with 12 easy entrances. Under its belt are some of the most sought-after brands in the world. You can get served anything you may want here, from the best of fashion from thousands of brands to retail, leisure, and even entertainment.
6. Eastgate Shopping Centre
- Capacity: 141,000 square meters
- Number of stores: 250
- Year Built: 1979
- Address: 43 Bradford Rd, Bedfordview, Germiston, 2008, South Africa
- Town or City: Germiston, Gauteng
- Opening and Closing Times: 9 am to 7 pm (Monday to Thursday), (9 am to 9 pm (Friday), 9 am to 6 pm (Saturday and Sunday)
The history of Eastgate Shopping Centre goes back to 1979 when it was built as the very first super-regional shopping center in Johannesburg. Today, it has become one of the largest malls in the country thanks to the expansions it has experienced. The size was expanded to 121,000 square meters in 2010, and then in 2017, it was brought to its current 141,000 square meters.
This is one of the busiest malls in the country, with close to a couple of million visitors on a busy month. According to reports, the mall sees as many as 80,000 shoppers on Saturdays, with its over 250 stores, including high street brands, restaurants, entertainment spots, beauty salons, automobile outlets, and more.
Owned by Liberty Holdings Limited, this property was initially between Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality and the city of Johannesburg. This remained until 2013 when it was adjusted fully into Ekurhuleni.
7. The Pavilion Shopping Centre, Durban
- Capacity: 135,000 square meters
- Number of stores: 255
- Year Built: 1993
- Address: Jack Martens Dr. Dawncliffe, Westville, 3611, South Africa
- Town or City: Durban
- Opening and Closing Times: 9 am – 7 pm (Monday to Sunday)
In 1993, the doors of this massive mall were first opened, making it the oldest first-generation shopping mall in KwaZulu-Natal. When Murray and Roberts first built it, it had a size of 75,000 square meters. This was still massive at the time, but that has not stopped it from seeing some more expansions through the years. The last expansion was in 2014, which brought it to 135,000 square meters. The mall was built with inspiration from European Architecture.
The mall has over 255 stores that are into both local and international businesses. It is fitted with a theatre, 40 restaurants, salons, boutiques, and other retail outlets. It has 17 entrances leading to the 2901 parking bays, many of which are paid for while others are free. Pensioners get to park for free. Pareto is the owner of Pavilion Mall.
8. Mall of Africa
- Capacity: 130,000 square meters
- Number of stores: 300
- Year Built: 2012 (construction began)
- Address: Magwa & Lone Creek Cres, Waterval City, Midrand, 1686, South Africa
- Town or City: Waterval City
- Opening and Closing Times: 9 am – 8 pm (Monday – Saturday), 10 am – 7 pm (Sunday)
Among others on the list, this holds a special place because it is the latest mall in South Africa that was built in a single phase. All others were built before they were later expanded to have larger capacities. Occupying some 130,000 square meters, the mall is home to more than 300 stores occupied by many major brands, including Adidas, African Bank, Ackermans, Al Capone, Zara Home, and Armani Exchange, among others.
The mall’s construction began in 2012, but it was finally in 2016 that it was opened for use. Designed with 50 elevators, the mall had R5 Billion spent in construction. It has as many as 6500 parking bays. It is owned by Malkia Rikhotso enterprises, Atterbury Group, and RMB Holdings.
9. Centurion Mall in Centurion
- Capacity: 105,000 square meters
- Number of stores: 200
- Year Built: 1983
- Address: Centurion Central, Centurion, 0046, South Africa
- Town or City: Centurion
- Opening and Closing Times: 9 am to 6 pm (Monday – Saturday), Sunday (9 am – 5 pm)
Centurion mall prides itself as a mall that, apart from being one of the biggest in the country, provides a great spot for people to shop and socialize. Like others, it has many brands under its sleeves, including Pick n Pay, Game, and Dis-Chem, among others.
Located at Centurion in Gauteng, the mall is designed with 13 restaurants and over 200 stores. It was built around 1983 towards centurion lake. It would later become the first brand in the country that was said to have big and well-known retailers under its belt. Since its construction, it did not undergo any major revamping until 2003, when 250 million ZAR was out into the revamping process. This is what gave a boost in size to the 105,000 square meters that it is today.
With a well-known artificial color water fountain amenity, the mall belongs to Redefine Property Group after the company bought the mall in 2015, and it has a worth of R4.6 billion. There are reports that each year, the malls attract as high as 14.4 million shoppers.
10. Westgate Shopping Mall, Johannesburg
- Capacity: 109,418 square meters
- Number of stores: 184
- Year Built: 1983
- Address: 120 Ontdekkers Rd, Horizon View, Roodepoort, 1725, South Africa
- Town or City: Roodepoort
- Opening and Closing Times: 9 am – 6 pm (Monday – Saturday), 9 am – 5 pm (Sunday)
Westgate mall is among the largest malls in South Africa that have reached this status after undergoing various renovations and redesigns in the past. The mall is an ideal place for anyone to visit if you are looking for a place that will allow you to access various brands under a single roof. Some of the better-known brands you will find here include Pick n Pay, Game, Woolworths, Checkers Hyper, and Edgars, among others.
The 10th among the biggest malls in South Africa, the facility first opened its doors to the public in 1985. The mall has 109,418 square meters, and it doesn’t have as many stores as others on the list, with only 184 stores across its name and only 6 entrances.
Here Are The Biggest Malls In Each of The Country’s Metro
Apart from the biggest malls in South Africa as a whole, each of the country’s six metros also has its biggest malls, which might not necessarily be among the topmost in the country. Here is a quick rundown:
- Johannesburg: The biggest mall in Johannesburg is Sandton City Mall, which is 215,000 square meters in size. This is also the biggest in the country, as stated.
- Pretoria and Centurion: With177,000 square meters, Menlyn Park Shopping center is the biggest mall in Pretoria and the second-largest in the country.
- Cape Town: In Cape Town, the biggest mall is Canal Walk which has a size of 146,828 square meters.
- Durban and Pietermaritzburg: The biggest mall here is Gateway Theatre of Shopping, with 150,320 square meters.
- Port Elizabeth: The biggest mall in Port Elizabeth is Baywest Mall, with a capacity of 86,995 square meters.
- Bloemfontein: No major Mall here makes the top 10 in the country, but with its 80,000 square meters, Loch Logan Waterfront is the biggest mall in Bloemfontein.