I hope you are looking for the best shopping malls in Guadalajara
Guadalajara is a major destination for shopping of all sorts. There are plenty of traditional markets but the modern, American-style shopping malls in Guadalajara have become an important part of daily life.
The mall isn’t just about shopping anymore. They are about dining, working, meeting friends, and a place for kids to play, and many of the newer malls have hotels now.
Guadalajara is the third largest metropolitan area in Mexico and there are lots of excellent shopping malls. Tourists will come in from the neighboring states just to go shopping at the high-end stores that Morelia, Aguascalientes, Colima, or Tepic may not have just yet.
In addition to shopping, you can find some of the best restaurants in Guadalajara in malls.
1. Plaza Andares
Plaza Andares is one of the finest malls in Latin America. It is hard to overstate how much effort has been put into the details. Coming from someone that shunned shopping malls for a lot of years, Andares changed how I think about what a mall is.
The family that developed this section of Zapopan is visionary. They built a world-renowned university, a hospital complex, and a multi-use commercial center.
There is a tech and banking cluster integrated into the property. Luxury residences and a luxury hotel decorate the skyline. Plaza Andares is one of the most popular places to stay in the Guadalajara Metropolitan Area.
The towers in this section of the city are architecturally interesting and have redefined what Zapopan is known for.
I first became a fan of this mall (and malls in general) because of the selection of restaurants and the food court. It is a lot of fun to walk down Paseo Andares and decide where to eat. Then I had kids and started pushing a stroller all over the city. The infrastructure at Andares is well thought out and works better than anything else in the city.
I am always astonished at how many great businesses are located in the parking lot from car washes to pharmacies, dry cleaning, and convenience stores that are, well, very convenient.
Most recently, I have been using the coworking spaces in one of the corporate towers. It is really enjoyable to have all those amenities while I am working. I’m willing to drive across the city to get my tasks done here.
Make sure to eat at Campomar, La Docena, Juniko, Lolo, La Pasteria, Fargo Cantina, Cuerno, El Almacén del Bife, and stroll through Mercado Andares food court. The food court went out and recruited some of the best small concepts in the city to open.
Let’s not forget about the actual shopping part. The shops are set around a well-manicured garden with fountains, ponds, public art, and lots of play areas for the kids. There is a weekly farmers market in the food court. The Palacio de Hierro is a major draw to the plaza. They have one of the nicest Liverpool department stores I have seen. Cinépolis VIP and a small casino bring in more people.
Andares is the best selection of high-end shops in this part of Mexico and I suspect in Latin America as well.
2. Plaza del Sol
Plaza del Sol is the first American-style shopping mall to open in Guadalajara and one of the first in all of Latin America. It was inaugurated in 1969 and helped develop the Avenida Lopez Mateos corridor. The Ciudad del Sol neighborhood grew up right about the same time. This mall is a part of Guadalajara’s history.
The Moragrega family was a driving force of the 12 founders of the mall. I lived in the Moragrega family’s Torre Minerva while I was in college and consider myself to be a fan of their development projects. They are classy and timeless.
There is a retro feel to the design and the businesses that populate the mall. It is a good representation of middle-class Guadalajara with ample bookstores, a Sanborns cafe, a supermarket, and country western stores.
The selection of restaurants is mostly Mexican chains with a selection of international chains. What I love about the food court is the carnitas restaurant that has been there for decades. It is a time capsule with uniforms and decorations from the 1960s.
There is a piece of public art in the middle of the mall by famed sculptor Alejandro Colunga called Magos del Sol. Colunga has pieces in front of the Hospicio Cabañas and on the boardwalk in Puerto Vallarta. It is exciting to find such an iconic surrealist artwork hidden in a mall.
3. La Perla
La Perla is a major redevelopment project and is quickly turning into one of the best malls in Guadalajara. When the Kodak factory shuttered in 2012 there was already talk of a mixed-use facility. I don’t think anyone guessed how cool it was going to end up.
The first buildings to go in were multiple tech campuses. Wizeline, HP, Luxsoft and more bet on the project.
Liverpool department store and Cinépolis VIP movie theater are the principal anchor tenants. The second-tier boutique shops are awesome brands like Puma and Nike.
The Restaurant scene is slowly shaping up to be one of the best mall offerings in the city. Palominos steak house opened with the mall. Chef Paco Ruano of Alcalde Restaurant fame is opening a new concept any day now. There is an upscale buffet, great burgers, and a really fun food court.
The mall is still only half full but we have a lot of expectations. There is a hotel under construction right next to the tech campuses. And I can’t wait to see Ceramica Suro‘s showroom.
4. Punto Sur Guadalajara
Punto Sur validated the southern expansion of the Guadalajara Metropolitan Area. Tlajomulco is considered to be out in the boondocks. People in the southern suburbs didn’t have a nice mall until 2019. Driving from the southern part of the metropolitan area to Andares is time-consuming during rush hour or not.
The idea of this plaza was more than just a shopping mall but to create a lifestyle boulevard. The main road is public and connects the two most important avenues in the region: Avenida Lopez Mateos and Camino Real a Colima. The shopping mall is then surrounded by a residential development.
If you are not familiar with the south of Guadalajara, it might seem like Punto Sur is a little out of place. It feels way too fancy for Tlajomulco. It is important to remember that El Palomar, Santa Anita, and Bugambilias are all wealthy enclaves outside of the periférico. I know people from both Ciudad Guzmán and Colima that drive to Punto Sur to go shopping and go out to eat.
The restaurant selection at Punto Sur has matured. The pandemic shut down a lot of great restaurants but there are even better ones setting up shop. Campomar is one of my favorite places to eat anywhere. L’Osteria de Il Duomo distilled three different concepts and twenty years of restaurant experience into an irresistible Italian food experience. Trip’s Burgers are a reminder of that Southern California-style hamburger that everyone compares to In-N-Out.
Punto Sur is a very nice mall for anybody that lives in the south.
5. Galerías Guadalajara (Rafael Sanzio)
This was my mall for years. It is still one of the easiest places to get in and out of. There is a Walmart next door, a La Europea liquor store onsite, and Costco across the street. There are a ton of great businesses not just in the mall but for blocks in every direction. Santa María del Pueblito, on the backside of the mall is one of the best places to eat traditional food in Guadalajara.
One of the big draws to Glalerías is the gym on the top floor. It was a Sport City up until the pandemic hit in 2020 when it shut down. The gym space reopened as an Energy Gym using the excellent facilities that Sport City left behind. The machines and 25-meter pool are very nice.
The two biggest anchor tenants are Liverpool and Cinépolis. They both draw a lot of people to shop at the mall. I really like Cinépolis. I have been to all of the Cinépolis theaters we are talking about on this list and I have never had a bad experience.
While most of the shops at Andares and Punto Sur feel much more corporate and expensive, Galerías is a little more independent and middle-class. Galerías still has a lot of big-name brands (H&M and Apple/mixup) but the music store and the skate shop on the top floor are independent. They are small proprietors that do it for the love.
The food is mostly corporate but I will admit to eating at PF Chang’s and Cheesecake Factory from time to time. If you want something spectacular, go eat at Restaurante La Ley Del Monte Birria Estilo Mazamitla in Santa Maria del Pueblito two blocks behind the shopping mall. Independencia street is full of delicious traditional foods like tacos, tortas, gorditas, pollos, and nieves. Just try and walk down that block without getting hungry.
6. Galerías Santa Anita
Galerías Santa Anita is another one of the new shopping malls fighting it out for customers as we come out of the pandemic. This is a mall for people who live in the south because the traffic on Avenida López Mateos is atrocious seven days a week. The mall is giving people another reason to stay in the south and avoid the traffic to get into the city.
One of the big draws to Galerías Santa Anita is the aquarium. An organization called Sealand operates a legit aquarium in the mall. The Acuario Michin is nicer but when you factor in the traffic, parents who live out this way are probably going to decide on the easier option.
The restaurants are different from what I have seen in other malls. There is a Don Vergas Seafood, a Cerveceria Chapultepec, and a Carbon. Carbon and Cerveceria Chapultepec are operated by the same restaurant group, Grupo Chapultepec.
7. Midtown Jalisco
The Midtown mall is located in a very interesting intersection of Guadalajara. Technically, it is called Italia Providencia but it is very close to the Country Club neighborhood and the much more humble Mezquitan Country/Ayuntamiento neighborhoods. The Glorieta Colón traffic circle brings in a lot of people.
This is a very nice mall that I have gone shopping at several times. The food selection is above averate with a mix of corporate and smaller Mexcian restaurant groups. I really like the Fresko Supermarket inside the mall. They have a great selection of national and imported brands. It is very convenient to have so much parking right outside of the supermarket.
8. Plaza Patria
I haven’t spent much time at Plaza Patria. I know that it is an older mall in Zapopan between Avenida Patria and Avenida Avila Camacho. It is very close to Downtown Zapopan and the beautiful Jardines de La Seattle neighborhood. The mall is older but still has a lot of people that use it.
The SRE office is always packed. We got an appointment to get my son’s Mexican passport here and it was a pretty fluid experience. There is a little waiting around and having a place to make copies, a coffee shop, and some restaurants made the task pretty easy.
City Market supermarket is one of the nicest supermarkets in all of Guadalajara for organic and imported items. There are lots of small independent stores mixed in with the usual corporate mall stores.
KidZania is a pretty big draw.
The food at Plaza Patria is just ok. I have only eaten at one restaurant while we were waiting for my son’s passport from the SRE.
If I lived closer to this area I would frequent this plaza just to shop at City Market.
9. Centro Magno
I used to love Centro Magno but I think it has passed its heyday. This is where I used to go to the movies when I lived in the Minerva but that was 12 years ago. Today, there is a technology plaza in the ground floor and a lot of open real estate. The building is still really nice but they have lost market share to the newer malls in other neighborhoods.
10. The Landmark
The Landmark is building a brand as an ultra-luxury shopping mall. The restaurants are very good but there has been a lot of turnover. There aren’t enough customers to support a large number of expensive restaurants no matter how good they are.
L’Osteria de il Duomo is bringing in their own people. La Tequila has a well-deserved fanbase in the region and can fill a restaurant no matter if it is in Tlajomulco, Zapopan, or Guadalajara. You probably won’t realize how many people from northern Mexico live in Guadalajara until visiting Mochomos Restaurant. The Hermosillo, Sonora-based restaurant group has some of the coolest concepts at the national level.
Kids are going to love the large playground, the ludoteca, and Kido Kids play area.
The stores are high-end, particularly with the tax markup. You will see Lululemon, Innovasport, Pottery Barn, and Pottery Barn Kids but they are very expensive compared to what I am used to. WeWork manages the office space and coworking spaces.
Some Final Thoughts on the Shopping Malls in Guadalajara
When I first moved to Guadalajara, I was not impressed with the shopping malls. I wanted to see the traditional markets that don’t exist in the United States. While I still love the traditional markets, I realized that they serve different needs. I can’t bring little kids to the traditional market to let them play. They go to the mall specifically to let the kids play while we get food. Many of the restaurants in Andares have their own supervised play areas in addition to the mall playgrounds.
Whether you are looking to do some shopping, go to the gym, or just get something to eat, I recommend checking out some of the shopping malls in Guadalajara.