my favourite mall in makkah

There are many shops within the vicinity of Masjidil Haram. You can get anything from food to medicine to apparels. However, they are mostly small stores by the roadside, so they are not really for people to hang out. After all, people don’t come to Makkah to hang out in malls.

Having said that, there are two (maybe three) major malls just outside the mosque. They can be easily seen as you get out of Door No. 1 (Bab Al-Malik Abdul Aziz). Distinguishing one mall from another can be a challenge, as the buildings are constructed very close together. Furthermore, they are often interconnected with other buildings via bridges or underground walkways.

My favourite mall of them all is undoubtedly Abraj Al-Bait Mall. It is located at the foot of Abraj Al-Bait Towers, the home of the giant clock. What is it about the mall that makes me like it so much? Everything.. the ambiance, the crowd, the shops.. everything I saw reminded me of malls in KL, making me feel right at home.

Mosque on the left. Malls on the right. Which way do you want to go?

Abraj Al-Bait Towers and the biggest clock in the world.

Let’s enter my favourite mall!

Modern and shiny, just the way I like it.

And it has Starbucks! 

By the way, I had Starbucks in Madinah, right in front of Masjid Nabawi. Then again Makkah, in this mall, just several steps from Masjidil Haram. Therefore, I totally don’t understand why Malaysian Muslims are so obsessed about boycotting Starbucks. If it is so wrong for Muslims to drink Starbucks, I’m sure the Saudi Arabian government would never let them do business, let alone in the holy land.

So yes, one caramel latte please!

As I was happily wandering the mall, suddenly the shops started pulling down their grills, one after another. It was in the middle of the afternoon, why did the shops close so early? Then I heard the guys in the shops saying to each other “Solat.. solat..” Oh, it was time for solat! All shops would be close for a while, so I headed to the top floor where the food court was, sat there and waited.

KFC and Hardee’s were some of the earliest to close.

People waiting at the top floor for business to resume. At the lower floor, grills were pulled halfway to keep customers out.

I peeked down the balcony and saw this amazing sight. At the concourse, people performed solat jamaah, together with those at Masjidil Haram.

Done performing solat, back to business as usual. 

Ladies, watch out. 

Shopping to the left. Al-Haram to the right. Make the right choice, literally!

My choice for the day? Easy. It was my time of the month :-p

14 comments:

JaJa'Z said...

ada mall jugak rupanya kat Mekah..akak ingatkan just kedai biasa2 jek yg jual kurma2 or abaya2 tu..suka la tu ada starbuck..hehehhe..kagum betul yek..time solat jek semua teratur..cuba kalau kat malaysia..takdenya nak sembahyang tengah2 alam tu..

Nowwa Fitri said...

dieya,

it's been a while I tak blogwalking..life is really tiring and busy before Ramadhan.Sekarang ni ok sket.

It was really nice to have nearly 1 hour to cover up the europe story and ur umrah journey.:)

all the best and keep writing..I'll come and drop by soon again.Insha Allah

Ramadhan Kareem dear..

Mixed-family in da house.... said...

assalamualaikum dieya,

seronok baca pengalaman dieya di sana..keep sharing ya

Hjh Noralenna Abbas said...

That's news. Mekah is so modern, ya?

Mamamya said...

wahhh..x sangka yer ada mall mcm ni,nampak mewah plak tu... sama mcm jaja..akak ingat cuma ada stall kecik2 jer kat sana...

Anonymous said...

is it true ibADah?

dieya said...

k jaja,
mall ni agak baru rasanya. tingkat atas sekali still tengah furbish. mmg suka sgt bila nampak starbucks, rasa nak melompat kegembiraan.. hahaha! tapi starbucks kat sana lg mahal dari mesia, takleh beli selalu.
kat dalam tanah haram kak, semunya org Islam, mmg sesuai sgt berhenti utk solat jemaah bila masuk waktu. kalau kat mesia susah kot nak wat gitu, kita dok semayang, org bukan islam dok lalu lalang shopping, tak khusyu pulak nnt.

nowwa,
no worries :-) i bet u must be bz fulfilling raya orders. really happy to know that u enjoy reading my entries. inshaAllah, i will continue writing.
ramadhan kareem to u too!

mixed-family in da house,
wa'alaikumussalam. thanks for dropping by. i pun seronok bila ingat semula pengalaman tu. inshaAllah, i will keep it up :-)

aunty nora,
yes, very modern indeed. nanti bila the expansion project siap, mesti lagi modern dan canggih.

k lieya,
dieya pun sama, tak sangka, sebab masa kat madinah tak jumpa mall yg moden gini. rupa2nya kat makkah ada, betul2 depan masjidil haram pulak tu. sgt convenient.

~jeet~ said...

waa..masa i pi stil in construction, bagusnya..dah cantik dah...

and sgt kagum dlm mall pon boleh solat berimamkan imam masjidil haram..memang kagum giler.. :)

dieya said...

jeet,
really? rasa mcm u baru je pi sana. cepat betul diorg buat kerja.
me too, sgt2 kagum. and the tiles on the floor pun tersusun ikut arah kiblat, senang jemaah nak buat saf.

Messy Mummy said...

Bestnya sembahyang macam tuh. Tak la bagi alasan surau kecik. Huhu..
The mall modern benor. Penat2 beribadah tak salah rehat2 sikit kan...
I've heard bout Starbucks tu tapi tak pernahla amik pusing sangat but I also heard mcd mmg tak patut makan. Any opinion on that?

Starbucks tu dah mcm Nasi dieya yer.. Huhu

susumanis said...

salam dieya, time akak pi 2008 ni seme blom siap, btol nampak mcm kt KL jeh kan :)

dieya said...

mm,
betul tu, mana2 pun boleh sembahyang. i never heard about mcD though. come to think about it, i didn't see mcD when i was there, not that it meant anything. burger king ada banyak.
hahahahaa.. takde laa sampai mcm nasi, ada yg bengkrap kot gitu!

kak su,
sekarang ni dah serba moden, mmg almost macam kat kl. nak jalan2 pun tak takut, felt like home ;-)

ahkakbatik said...

masyAllah.. masyaAllah... ente bulum balik kah?
masyaAllah.. mengagumi kurniaan Tuhan yang diturunkan kepada manusia mencipta keindahan sebegini rupa..
masyaAllah.. ana mahu masak turung dan petolalah.

dieya said...

kaktek,
ya habibi.. ana sudah balik lah.. ini semua cerita 1001 malam yg lalu lah
mashaAllah di amerika ada petola kah.. ana sungguh kagum.. ana pikir ente di sana makan ceaser salad saja lah