AJ Wolken staff writer
After more than four years of construction, Westfield Century City mall will finish renovations this fall. Westfield spent more than $955 million to increase the mall to over 1.3 million square feet and it was worth every penny. The mall looks to be completely revitalized, with tons of new stores and even the addition of a gym, Equinox.
While it was difficult to cope with the loss of Wetzel’s Pretzels when renovations began years ago, the mall is opening new restaurants including a joint Auntie Anne’s-Cinnabon and a Randy’s Donuts, which should establish the mall as a prominent dessert destination. The food options are one of the best facets of the mall, and one of the greatest successes of the renovations is the addition of well-known restaurants such as Shake Shack, Sugarfina, California Pizza Kitchen, Panini Cafe and even Chick-Fil-A. Although the food court is mostly under construction, its most popular restaurants remain open during construction, allowing it to remain a strength of the mall throughout construction.
Amazon plans to add to the remodeling of the mall by opening its first bookstore in L.A., Amazon Books. Another addition included in the mall is California’s first Eataly, a gourmet Italian food emporium co-owned by celebrity chef Mario Batali. One emphasis in the remodeling of the mall was adding open space, and Westfield does a great job at adding open areas to make the mall more lively and modern. More lounging areas have been added, which create a very welcoming and natural vibe, as the seats are made of wood and there are plants and fire pits in the lounging areas. One of the biggest additions to the mall is the large area next to the movie theater, which has been set up to accommodate small concerts as well as serving as a great place to take a break from shopping. A large LED screen is placed under an arrangement of lights, creating the perfect space to accommodate small concerts for the community. Overall, the Century City mall renovation was a great success, and looks to be a popular spot for shopping, eating and even just hanging out, in the future. Check out the mall’s newest additions at its grand opening on Oct. 3.