Cité Europe

Since there was not much thing to see or could do in the old city centre, mum and I decided to spend the rest of our time in France at Cité Europe before boarding a train back to the U.K.

Cité Europe was a shopping centre situated next to the Channel Tunnel terminal. The complex contained over 140 shops, a hypermarket, a 12-screen cinema complex and around 20 restaurants. The shopping centre opened on March 21, 1995, about 10 months after the completion of the tunnel.

I still remember the hype the shopping centre had created in the U.K. The Brits en masses flocked to Calais in their cars, and they laden their car boots with cheap booze and cigarettes at the shopping centre before heading home.

After more than two decades, the place looked a little dated and tired…

By the way, the lamp posts of the shopping centre car park remind you something?…

Don’t you agree that the curve of the lamp post looks like the Martian’s craft’s red-eye heat-ray gun in The War of the World’s (1953)?

The car park was huge – spaces for more than 4000 cars, therefore, we must make a note near which entrance our car was parked…

The shopping centre was designed by a French architect, Paul Andreu…

The architect is famous for being in charge of planning and constructing Charles de Gaulle Airport in Paris.
So when was the last time I used the airport?
Since Eurostar connected London with French capital in May 1994, I have been using the train only. That means I haven’t been to the place for nearly 25 years!

Large skylights introduced abundant natural light into the interior of the shopping centre…

We found the shop floors very quiet. It must have been because the famous annual summer sale – Les soldes d’été was still a few days away and probably the shoppers didn’t see the point of paying full prices.

Children’s play area near Carrefour…

We did some grocery shopping at the hypermarket, buying cheese and sweets to take home. I must say, the Carrefour branch at Cité Europe was humongous! The floor area was enormous and the selections were stupendous.

Mum was happy (and tired) after shopping at Carrefour…

Ok, shall we go back to our car?

Kaori by Kaori Okumura

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