Mall of India in Suburban Chicago Will House 10 Restaurants and More – Eater Chicago

Posted: January 23, 2020 at 6:42 pm

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A former Walmart in suburban Naperville will be home to an ambitious cultural complex for Indian food, private events, stores, and more. Its called Mall of India and the goal is to create a mini Devon Avenue under one roof. The plans call for a food court that will house 10 restaurants including the all-vegan Art of Dosa. Theres also a 25,000-square-foot South Asian grocery store.

In addition to Art of Dosa, the Port of Peri Peri (formerly Portos Peri Peri) will join the lineup, as well as Indo-Chinese and Gujarati stalls. Plans also include a restaurant that offers pizza and wraps made with halal ingredients that should be popular with children. Other stalls will feature ice cream, Indian snacks, and juices. Expect 10 restaurants total including a biryani station. Plans also include a banquet hall for weddings and other private events. Dont expect everything to open at once, as the project will unfurl in stages.

There will be inevitable comparisons to Mitsuwa, the Japanese grocery store in Arlington Heights, and the Super H Mart in Niles, part of the Korean supermarket chain. But what owner Vinoz Chanamolu is planning dwarfs those projects. Other aspects of the mall include a bevy of non-food entertainment options and more such as childrens daycare services, cricket and baseball batting cages, plus movie theaters. Its the first of its kind and Chanamolu hopes to build more in other parts to the country. The massive space is 100,000 square feet.

We are creating an experience, Chanamolu said.

Construction is inching towards a planned opening in March or April. Level Construction is converting the former Walmart. The company also handled the buildout for Art of Dosas location in Revival Food Hall in the Loop.

Chanamolu, who announced the project in March 2018, wears many hats including restaurateur. Hes behind the Hyderabad House, a chain of restaurants with locations on Devon in Chicago, plus in suburban Buffalo Grove, Naperville, and Schaumburg. A location is also planned to open inside the mall.

The food court will serve halal meat and no beef to keep up with Muslim and Hindu traditions. Chanamolu stressed the quality of ingredients, as some South Asian restaurants have been slow to embrace organic foods. Theyre more expensive, and some suppliers who can provide speciality ingredients dont have the connections with vendors who frequent farmers markets around the city.

Over the last few decades, Chicagoans have associated Devon Avenue in Rogers Park with the citys South Asian population. But like all retail, Internet ordering has lessened the need for physical stores. South Asians arent spending as much time on Devon and the strip is changing.

There is no need [to go], Chanamolu said Previously, youd go for grocery, clothing, gold whatever you needed youd go to Devon.

But now many South Asians who grew up in other states and moved to Chicago are moving to the suburbs. And they dont want to drive to Devon in the city for their needs. Chanamolu imagines parents going to the mall and shopping, grabbing dinner to go, and then picking up their children from the daycare. Floor plans show 27,000 square feet reserved for a day care center/kids activities.

Each business complements each other, Chanamolu said.

The floor plans also allocate 25,000 square feet for the grocery store. In December, Patel Brothers, the iconic Indian supermarket chain, took over a former Toys R Us in suburban Niles, to open a new 28,000-square-foot flagship location. The grocery store inside the mall will be about 25,000 square feet which Chanamolu said is about the size of Patel Brotherss Naperville location.

Mall of India, 776 S. Route 59, Naperville, planned for a March/April opening, the restaurantss debuts will be staggered.

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Mall of India in Suburban Chicago Will House 10 Restaurants and More - Eater Chicago

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