Central Florida’s largest mall will now be getting even bigger. The Florida Mall will be losing anchor Saks in March but as soon as it closes the 105,000 sq ft space will begin a massive updating. Come 2015 the space will reopen as the mall’s new food court with a massive new entrance on the Sand Lake Road (northern) side of the mall. The new food pavilion will feature 16 counter service options plus two new full service restaurants. New space for several small retailers will also be included.
“We have great demand for any space at the Florida Mall,” said Brian Hanson, general manager of Florida Mall “so the ability to reposition existing space and create new mini-anchors, stores, and restaurants is a fantastic opportunity for us to even better serve our shoppers.”
The new food pavilion will be double the amount of seating of the dated current one with about 1,400 seats altogether. That seating area will include both indoor and outdoor dining areas, high-top tables, couches, and special picnic table style seating for larger groups. Live palm trees will be featured prominently in the new pavilion. Large windows and skylights will flood the food court with plenty of natural lighting. Earth tones and cool colors help create contemporary feel for the space.
“The new food pavilion and retail area will be unlike anything in the market,” said Hanson. “The design of the space will create a true gathering place for shoppers and area office workers alike.”
Families will benefit from the new food pavilion where a new children’s play area, new expanded restrooms with family bathrooms, outlets for electronic device charging, and hand washing stations will be available in the new space.
The mall is already in the midst of a construction project, over in the old Lord & Taylor anchor space. The open-air center that was built-in the space already features an H&M, XXI Forever and Zara. This fall American Girl will open its only Orlando area store. Zara will also be moving into a much larger 30,000 sq ft flagship location. That open-air center has created an impressive new entrance (also on the Sand Lake Road side).
The current food court entrance is wedge in-between the two entrances. It should close in 2015 when the new food court opens. No word on what specifically will replace the current food court, other than that it “will ultimately be repositioned for new retail space.”