My experience at Valley Fair Mall was engaging and interesting. It wasn't like the past experiences where I just spent hours and hours shopping; this time I was here to do some critical thinking and expand my perspective on the mall, thus giving me a better knowledge on what Valley Fair really represents besides being just a shopping mall. Valley Fair is probably one of the best, if not the best, malls I've been to. With over 200 stores, this mall is beyond any shopper's imagination as they can shop at their favorite stores not only for themselves, but also for their family and friends. Valley Fair has its own flair and taste and each store is suitable and targeted for any specific group of people classified by their race, gender, or wealth. So how can one go possibly wrong with Valley Fair?
For outsiders and local shoppers, Valley Fair is located conveniently off highway 880 or 280, depending on which way your coming from, and is stationed on Steven's Creek Boulevard just in between the border of San Jose and Santa Clara. I guarantee you won't miss it. This area is highly populated due to the mall's popularity and its neighbor, Santana Row, which is located across the street. Personally, I feel very privileged to live so close to such a highly-favored mall, which is a mere 15-20 minutes drive for me. Since it is often so crowded, parking at Valley Fair can be hectic sometimes, but finding a parking space is a great way to test your patience and patience is a virtue. If the parking is really busy, one solution is to call up a valet and have them park your car for you. For a couple of bucks plus tip, it can save you tons of time, ease up on your frustration, and give you extra time to shop.
Valley Fair is designed in an upscaled two-story mall, consisting of approximately 240 stores. Although the makers of the mall wanted a Greek or western theme throughout the entire mall, its two-story design separated the appearance of the two floors completely. On the top floor, there are carpet flooring and dim lightning with high ceiling throughout the upper floor. The top floor also consists of the food court, consisting of fast generic foods from different countries. The bottom floor seemed much more exciting and fancy as it consisted of marble floors, chandelier lights, and large columns. What really set apart each floor was not the quantity of the stores, but the quality of the stores. It seemed like the expensive stores were located on the bottom floor, while stores that seemed affordable to most people were placed on the top floor. This goes to show that the mall is somewhat built towards segregation and classifies the rich from the poor. Also as I looked throughout the mall, there weren't many African-Americans or Hispanics shopping although they make up 34.8% of the minority race. Instead, I saw many Whites and Asians. This is because Valley Fair tends to target the more wealthier people. According to the San Jose Fact Sheet statistics, 79% of all households make under $100,000 a year, which means their shopping budget is not very high, so they can't afford to buy expensive items. This definitely isn't fair. Valley Fair should be a place for everybody, where everyone can come together and shop without any discomfort and realize that just because someone's less wealthy and can't afford expensive jewelry and clothing doesn't mean that person should be segregated and looked down upon. Valley Fair needs to treat people equally and realize that each person came here with the same motive - to shop, giving the Valley Fair mall more money. Valley Fair should just move some of the expensive stores across the street to Santana Row or mix up the mall a little, so it shows less segregation from the high class to the low/middle class.
Even though Valley Fair targets all people, it does not take that stance. This visit to Valley Fair gave me a new and fresh look on what the mall really represents. Next time I step in Valley Fair, my mentality of the mall will definitely be different.