Good Food Blog
Westfield of dreamsPosted at 5:02PM, 29 October 2008 by Andrea McGinniss - Editor, bbcgoodfood.com
They say the journey itself is more important than the arrival. 'They' obviously never walked the long mile down Wood Lane to work. For the past two years it's been a case of dodge the ditch/rat/rubble on a daily basis as work on the new Westfield Shopping Centre (or Fountain Gate as and my Kath 'n Kim lovin' colleagues have dubbed it) cranked up.
It's been, quite frankly, hell. And with Shepherds Bush tube station out of action for nine long months, bus diversions aplenty and shops closing down left right and centre, pretty inconvenient too.
Now, after years of waiting, it's only one more sleep until the biggest shopping centre in London opens.
Now, after years of waiting, it's only one more sleep until the biggest shopping centre in London opens. And given it's only a hop, skip and jump from the BBC, and my flat, I'm as excited as a kid on a diet of red jellybeans.
I've always been a bit of a mallrat. While many complain about shopping centres being soulless, anonymous and timeless (is it 10am or 10pm? How do you tell?) I revel in it. I love the muzak, the harsh lighting, the miles of mall. In Ireland I even lived on top of a shopping centre. The lift from the apartment dropped me right down next to the key cutting booth. I almost hoped I'd lock myself out one day just so I could fully appreciate its convenience.
But perhaps the best thing about shopping malls were the 'International food courts' - my first foray into foreign cuisine. Many moons ago, Mum would give me and my brothers five bucks each which we could spend whatever way we wished. Sometimes an enchilada and some nachos, others a big pile of msg-laden gloopy Chinese noodles - we had the whole world on a plate, and all for under a fiver. Genius.
Westfield isn't going to be short of eateries with over '50 international food concepts' on offer. Namedropping the list of proposed stores and eateries has become a favourite watercooler topic. 'There's a Michelin-starred chef involved question is - who?' 'There's a Wahaca, brilliant'. 'There's a milkshake bar - it's going to have hundreds of flavours'.
The truth is, we don't know, and I don't actually believe it's going to happen until it opens tomorrow. A bunch of us sad suckers are meeting at 9am for the first of many Westfield meals. See you there, otherwise I'll let you know if it was actually worth the wait.
30th October 2008: We clamber our way to the door on opening day.