The “Shoppi” in a Zurich-area suburb changed the Swiss shopping style.
This content was published on March 28, 2020 - 11:00
David Eugster (text) and
Ester Unterfinger (photo editor)
Prosperity in Switzerland rose massively after the Second World War, and people began seeing shopping as fun rather than necessary.
In 1948, the Migros consumer cooperative introduced the American principle of self-service. Cars made cities less attractive and the suburbs more accessible. In the early 1960s, developers began designing new places to live and shop.
Switzerland’s first mall opened on March 12, 1970. The “Shoppi” in Spreitenbach, canton Aargau, was initiated by the discounter Denner.
There were 1,500 parking spaces, something the mall touted in its advertising. Both ends were anchored by large department stores that attracted customers and ensured that they’d walk past the smaller shops.
The fully air-conditioned mall offered all kinds of other amenities: restaurants, an indoor swimming pool and, last but not least, a “children’s paradise” where parents could leave their kids with babysitters – and be free to shop unencumbered.