THE East Gates Mall in Trincity will offer a bowling alley among its attractions, Edward Aboud, of proprietors George Aboud and Sons Ltd (GASL), said at the opening of the mall on Sunday. Perry Ellis, Princess Casino, China Town, and Kids and Candy were other coming attractions which were indicated by signs on display in the three-storey edifice, just a stone's throw from the popular Trincity Mall.
Aboud said while the mall's sod-turning had taken place in 2017, the concept and inspiration for the mall had long before been nurtured by his father George Aboud, chairman of GASL. Aboud said the mall was envisaged as "a place of discovery, learning and culture."
Offering food, retail, entertainment and personal health facilities, in an environment of safety and serenity, Aboud said, the mall would offer an experience not just for teenagers but the entire family. He said the edifice had a unique architectural design.
"More than 200 employees make up the mall's staff and security teams," Aboud elaborated.
Recalling a halt in construction during the covid19 pandemic, he thanked those entities that had stayed the course during that time, such as tenants and investors.
Aboud hailed the hundreds of craftsmen who had worked on the building.
"This is your mall. I invite you to bring your families so they can enjoy the fruits of your labour."
MC Wendell Constantine viewed the mall as a "lifestyle centre."
Among the guests were Housing Minister Camille Robinson-Regis, Minister in the Ministry of Education Lisa Morris-Julian, and Arima mayor Cagney Casimire.
Speaking as local MP for Arouca/Maloney, Robinson-Regis saw the mall as a "crown jewel in the constituency" and "an edifice of which we can all be proud."
She said that on behalf of the Prime Minister and Cabinet, she wished to thank George Aboud for having persevered in building the mall during the uncertainties of the pandemic, when he could instead have opted to ditch the project and recoup his investment. Robinson-Regis hailed Aboud for his "boundless faith" in the project and, more broadly, the country.
"What strikes me most about this mall is the emphasis on family entertainment. I congratulate the Aboud family for thinking about families in this area."
Noting the bowling alley – which is due to open early next year – she said this facility would likely serve to encourage men to accompany their wives to the mall.
Robinson-Regis also the nobleness of the project was seen in the mall's offering a sensory wall, to serve people with disabilities, including those on the autism spectrum.
"I thank the Aboud family for the confidence you continue to place in Trinidad and Tobago."