SHOWS: ALMATY, KAZAKHSTAN (OCTOBER 19, 2012) (REUTERS) - $450 million luxury shopping mall opened in Almaty, Kazakhstan's commercial capital, marking the arrival in Central Asia of major global fashion and luxury retail brands including Louis Vuitton, Dolce & Gabbana, Gucci, Burberry and Saks Fifth Avenue.
The mall is part of Esentai Park, a new development in Almaty that includes luxury residential and commercial towers as well as a five-star hotel that is expected to open next year. It has
The opening ceremony included a fashion show and a VIP party attended by Kazakh beau-monde and top model Eva Herzigova.
"I think people having such a vast choice, you know, they will become aware of...what's in fashion, and really develop their own... taste and their own style", Herzigova said after touring the mall.
She posed for photographers with fans and guests and watched a fashion show.
"I think the women in Kazakhstan are very fashionable, you know, they love to dress up. They love to be different. They really, they really, they really want to make an impact with their appearance," Herzigova said.
The new mall with leasable area of 52000 square meters will have 160 shops located on 6 floors and three parking floors.
"Well, I can only say that this (the opening of the mall) means that everything is going well in Kazakhstan and that Kazakhstan is prospering. The opening of such luxurious shopping centres with such magnificent brands and with so many square metres of space suggests that everything is going well in our country and that we are prospering."Roman Aleksandrov, editor-in-chief of Fashion Collection Kazakhstan magazine, told Reuters.
Oil- and uranium-producing Kazakhstan is Central Asia's largest economy. Foreign investors have poured more than $150 billion into the country during its two decades of independence from the old Soviet Union
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