Wednesday, October 12, 2016

The Mudanjiang Wanda Plaza: A Few Observations of Stores, Food, and Fun

Mudanjiang Wanda Plaza Shopping Mall
The Mudanjiang Wanda Plaza Shopping Mall

Several years ago I posted about the Kaifu Wanda Plaza in Changsha, Hunan. Since then I have seen a number of Wanda Plazas in other cites across China. Most recently, I visited the Mudanjiang Wanda Plaza in Mudanjiang, Heilongjiang. The 144th Wanda Plaza in China opened a few months ago and includes a shopping mall, apartments, and office space. I won't be doing a comprehensive overview, but I will share some of my impressions during a brief visit to the shopping mall.

When I looked at the mall map, the most curious thing was an "Apple" store. I doubted Mudanjiang had an Apple Store and was not the least bit surprised when I discovered it referred to an Apple authorized reseller.

Authorized Apple reseller store in the Mudanjiang Wanda Plaza

Well, the store claims it is an authorized reseller. At the moment I don't see any mention of it in Apple's online search tool for authorized resellers in China.

Elsewhere in the mall, I saw an Adidas Kids store.

adidas kids store in the Mudanjiang Wanda Plaza

The online Adidas reseller tool isn't working for me, so I can't comment more on that topic. I didn't see an Adidas-imitating Adisco shoes store in the mall though.

I also did not see any entertainment like the Toyota promotion I saw at the Kaifu Wanda Plaza. But I did see a promotion which featured some children in a fun competition.

children competing in a game on a stage inside the Mudanjiang Wanda Plaza

I have seen Zoo Coffee, a Korean animal-themed coffeehouse chain, at other Wanda Plazas. None here, but Zebra coffee is available.

Zebra coffee shop at the Mudanjiang Wanda Plaza

There are many options for food, including three familiar Western chains: Dairy Queen, Pizza Hut, and Burger King.

Dairy Queen at the Mudanjiang Wanda Plaza

Pizza Hut at the Mudanjiang Wanda Plaza

Burger King at the Mudanjiang Wanda Plaza

Pizza Hut and Burger King have prime locations at one of the main entrances. The Burger King is notable in part because Mudanjiang does not have a single McDonald's. This may be the first time I was in a Chinese city with a Burger King but not a McDonald's.

The third floor of the mall is full of other restaurants. Several offer buffets, including one with something of an Alps theme.

Alps Pizza Buffet at the Mudanjiang Wanda Plaza

There is also, as usual for a mall, a Sichuan option.

Sichuan-style restaurant at the Mudanjiang Wanda Plaza

Several restaurants, such as Pig Boeuf, sport a trendy style which has seemingly grown popular in parts of China.

Pig Boeuf at the Mudanjiang Wanda Plaza

Pig Boeuf had a nice family standing out front.

humanoid pig family statues at the Mudanjiang Wanda Plaza

Apparently these humanoid pigs are meant to encourage people to eat pork. If they have the opposite effect, a nearby vegetarian restaurant might be a good option.

vegetarian restaurant at the Mudanjiang Wanda Plaza

I wouldn't call Mudanjiang a vegetarian-friendly place, so seeing this restaurant at the Wanda Plaza was a bit of a surprise. When I looked inside I saw that unlike other restaurants it had zero customers. Instead, employees including two chefs were sitting at a table looking extremely bored. Too bad.

Finally, to close out this odd set of observations from the Mudanjiang Wanda Plaza on a happier note, I will share my favorite: a man and presumably his daughter taking a ride through the mall on an electric dinosaur kiddie car.

father and daughter riding an electric dinosaur kiddie car at the Mudanjiang Wanda Plaza

Now that is a great way to mall.

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