ECONOMY

Smart Park is latest in thriving crop of shopping malls

A series of new commercial centers located in the Attica region was recently completed with the inauguration of the fifth shopping complex in the last 12 months. Smart Park, constructed by REDS, was the result of a 75-million-euro investment and covers some 50,000 square meters in the area of Yialou in Spata, about 20 kilometers east of Athens.

The new commercial complex is situated next to the McArthurGlen designer outlet. Together, the two commercial and entertainment ventures cover a total area of approximately 80,000 square meters, effectively the largest commercial area in the country.

The blossoming of commercial centers is a clear sign of the kind of confidence shown by investors in this particular category of real estate, a market which has so far shown considerable resistance to the crisis, judging by sales figures reported in the last few months.

The Athens Metro Mall, constructed by Talima Venture (owned by Panagiotis Konstantinou, a businessman of Greek descent operating in real estate in Latin America), opened its doors in November 2010 in the area of Dafni, southeastern Attica, while Athenian Capitol, built by the Charagionis Group at the junction of Ioulianou and Tritis Septemvriou streets near Victoria Square in central Athens, followed in December. In spring this year, Viohalco?s River West was inaugurated on Kifissos Avenue, followed by the McArthurGlen designer outlet, which opened in June.

Overall, about 100,000 square meters of newly constructed commercial center space has been added to the existing market over the course of the economic crisis.

Marking a 55-million-euro investment, Ellaktor subsidiary REDS inaugurated the first phase of the new Smart Park, a commercial space hosting various retails chains including Carrefour, Jumbo, Kotsovolos, Hondos Center, Intersport, Celestino, Systemgraph (Apple Premium Reseller), Octopus, Cook Shop, Wind, Mark Aalen and Bozikis, among others, with brands such as Mamas