The Rise of Shopping Centers in Poland

Since Poland’s transition period, over the last 20 years, the country has faced remarkable growth. With the integration to the EU, Poland has faced economic growth through the adoption of Western institutions, social norms and…shopping centers.

As a child, I grew up in Warsaw in the 90’s and I can still remember that going to a shopping center was quite a journey, let alone a place you would go just to keep busy on a weekend. The purpose of a shopping center was to get your groceries and maybe some clothes that weren’t really on trend with our Western neighbours. Fast forward to the early 2000’s and giant buildings started to appear where food, entertainment, and shopping could all be found under one roof – unheard of. Working in the Polish real estate sector is so gratifying because I have had the chance to speak to candidates who explained to me how the difficulty in 1998 was not the competition, but rather educating Poles on the purpose of a shopping center.

Currently, shopping centers have become a standard part of people’s everyday life in Poland – entertainment hubs. They are a primary destination for meetings, get together’s and family days out. According to reports from JLL and Cushman and Wakefield, with a rise of 3.6% GDP year on year, consumer spending is at its highest. Poland is facing tremendous growth with over 500,000 sqm of shopping center projects under construction in the last couple years. I can definitely feel the market’s momentum as every time I go back to Warsaw, a new retail spot just seems to appear out of nowhere.

With one new shopping center after another, developers try to come up with diverse and innovative methods to attract more people. The soon to be opened Galeria Polnocna in Warsaw is a great example with their 22-meter sculpture by the famous designer, Oskar Zieta.

There is a bright business future for Poland …

Alizee Popow, International Shopping Centers, Foundation Recruitment

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