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Tiger City Department Store taichung

If you're a North American, or have lived anywhere on that continent, there's a good chance that you've spent more than your fair share of time in shopping centers and malls. An all-American invention, the shopping center has today revolutionized the global face of retail and entertainment, having the same impact on the world's cities that another American invention--the skyscraper--has.

Over the past couple decades, "hangin' at the mall" has become a national pastime, not just for teenagers, but people of all ages. They come to enjoy the all-weather, one-stop shopping, dining and entertainment experience that only a mall can deliver. A major icon of a past retail generation, the American department store, has only survived as a part, an appendage, of a mall.

There is little doubt that Taiwan itself is now prepared to follow this trend, as a tidal wave of new mall openings has overtaken Taipei, Taichung and other cities, and shows no signs of abating. In Taichung over the past decade, there have been more than a few developments which have been touted as shopping malls but have fallen far short in many regards, because of scale, lay-out, facilities and other factors. However, it has not been until the past few months that not one, but two, real malls have opened in the city. Both of these, Tiger City and Taichung Central, are already bringing a new standard to central Taiwan residents and lay the ground for more of the same in the future.
   
The most recent addition, Tiger City, has gone all-out to make a splash with the January grand openings of both the mall and its largest tennant, Warner Village cinema complex. Although relatively compact by American standards, the new mall has a decidedly more American feel to its lay-out and design than its other city counterpart, whose approach is slightly more like a department store.
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