From the seniors who couldn’t wait to sift through high-end brands at David Jones to the teenage girls lining up for a free gift bag at Mecca Maxima – there was huge interest at the grand opening of Stockland Green Hills on Thursday.
Stockland cut the ribbon in celebration of the final stage of the $414 million redevelopment.
The new stage included the opening of an indoor/outdoor courtyard, 950 more car parks and 50 additional shops, bringing the total number of retailers in the centre to 220.
Stockland group executive and CEO commercial property John Schroder said the centre now hosted brands that no one would have imagined a few years ago.
Stockland CEO and managing director Mark Steinert said the centre was about more than just shopping and pointed out the new dining precinct, a job hub created by Stockland called the connectivity centre, and the focus on family entertainment as examples of that.
“It’s about community, it’s about lifestyle, it’s about health and wellbeing,” he said. “There’s really something for everyone.”
Paterson MP Meryl Swanson said the new centre was not only better than before, but had class and depth.
“So many people have said to me, ‘Meryl I’ve waited for this for years’,” she said.
“We’ve always felt if you wanted to go somewhere to get something really special you had to go to Newcastle.
“Well here in Maitland, in Green Hills and in the Lower Hunter, we have made it. We’ve got beautiful shops and we’ve got somewhere to come.”
There was also a ribbon cutting at David Jones, with CEO David Thomas saying he was excited to open the latest edition of the oldest department store in the world.
“Good things come to those who wait and 180 years on we launch here today,” he said.
The two-storey, 2,300 square metre store will include fashion for women, men and youths as well as a home section.