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New shopping centre opens in Innsbruck

13th April 2010 Print
The new shopping centre

Long awaited and much anticipated, Innsbruck’s ‘Kaufhaus Tyrol’, an inner-city shopping space steeped in tradition, finally reopened its doors in March 2010.

With a surface of 33,000m2 this downtown shopping mecca has set a new benchmark in terms of architecture, product range, catering facilities and customer services.

The local population has been looking forward for quite some time for their cherished Kaufhaus Tyrol to reopen. After investor René Benko purchased the rather outdated premises it took several years to tear down the old structure and rebuild the mall to its new splendour. The successful completion of the new Kaufhaus Tyrol marks the be-ginning of another era in the colourful history of the building: Originally founded in 1908 by Bauer & Schwarz - and considered at that time as the latest trend in department stores, heavily damaged during the bomb attacks of WWII and re-constructed during the 1950’s, the premises have seen a succession of owners in the second half of the 20th century.

The most striking feature of the Kaufhaus Tyrol’s brand new appearance is undoubtedly its stunning architecture. Designed by British star architect David Chipperfield, the building scores with its bold, clearly structured façade of glass and re-enforced concrete. As you enter the mall through its main entrance in Maria-Theresien-Strasse, you cross at first a forecourt-like space before reaching a central area flooded with natural daylight where spectacularly designed escalators move you across the six levels of the building’s interior. The predominant colour is white, the materials used are mainly glass and matt metal surfaces, with the grid pattern design of the exterior walls being duplicated on the shop fronts inside the building. The mall’s catering areas too score with their outstanding design, in particular the elegant Café Schindler on the first floor with its elegant retro ambiance achieved through the skilful blend of shades of brown, clear-cut lines, mellow lighting and – certainly the most striking feature - huge window surfaces that allow for a fabulous view across Maria-Theresien-Strasse.

In order to work up an appetite for a delicious culinary break, there is no better way than taking an exploratory stroll through the numerous shops inside Kaufhaus Tyrol featuring clothes and shoes, accessories and beauty products, as well as sports gear - a true fashionista’s heaven! Here you can also find decorative items for your home, high-quality reading matter - and there is even a flower shop. Parents can browse leisurely through the mall while the little ones make new friends at the on-site Kindergarten that employs Montessori teaching methods.

Although you’ll be fairly busy exploring we suggest that you ought to allow some time for sampling one or the other culinary delight: True to Austrian coffee house culture at the Café Schindler they serve typical Austrian treats as well as coffee specialties - and a selection of homemade cakes and gateauxs. In addition to the Café Schindler there is some pretty keen competition in the culinary field, namely from Italian café-bars Centrale and Segafredo as well as from the Coffeeshop Company, another top spot for excellent coffee. Cat’s Saftladen specializes in delicious juice beverages, whereas the basement snack bar Tasties serves up ‘fast’ food in excellent quality. Another food outlet in the ‘Plaza’ area is Meer-Sensei, offering delicious Sushi and a variety of other fish specialties, sharing its location with M-Preis, a supermarket with a vast range of groceries and a great deli section.

Just in case you can’t find that very special item that you wanted to buy, or need help bringing all your purchases to your lodgings: the friendly staff at Kaufhaus Tyrol will be happy to assist you with this - or indeed any query you may have. The Infopoint counter is open from 8am until 7pm to provide useful information in several languages. Customer-friendly services like home delivery, wheelchair accessibility, a tactile guidance system for the visually impaired, baby changing facilities etc. make shopping at Kaufhaus Tyrol a thoroughly enjoyable experience that can be enjoyed even longer than at other city stores: from Monday to Wednesday the retail shops stay open from 9am until 7pm, Thursdays and Fridays from 9am until 8pm and on Saturdays from 9am until 6pm. Groceries are available already at 7.30am and the catering facilities are happy to welcome you from 8am.

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The new shopping centre The new shopping centre