Rundle Mall – “It’s part of what makes Adelaide special”. I have so many memories of the Mall, from visiting the Magic Cave at a young age, to landing my first job in the City and brunch spot hunting with my friends, the Mall is an iconic and special place where people move through at rush hour or simply stay a while and enjoy all it has to offer.
“Everyone has a story of Rundle Street and Rundle Mall,” says Minister for Investment and Trade, the Honourable Martin Hamilton-Smith. “It is very much part of Adelaide’s story. It is the premier shopping destination in South Australia”.
This week, the Honourable Martin Hamilton-Smith, State Member for Adelaide, Rachel Sanderson, Lord Mayor Martin Haese along with local personalities, media and representatives of Rundle Mall’s major retailers all gathered together at the iconic SA ‘Malls Balls’ landmark to toast the Mall’s 40th Birthday.
Hosted by Australian Survivor contestant and local magician Matt Tarrant, the celebration saw special guest speakers reminisce about the Mall’s great history, recent developments and the rise in milkshake prices over 40 years. Apparently a milkshake cost a measly one shilling and three pence forty years ago, which in Insta-gen lingo is ‘not a lot’. I agree, the dramatic rise in milkshake prices is a real serious issue which should be discussed… but anyways, back to Rundle Mall’s birthday.
The Mall was opened by Premier Don Dunstan on the 1st September 1976 as Australia’s first pedestrian-only precinct. In it’s 40 years Rundle Mall has housed and supported major and family owned retailers and service providers.
On the 5th October 1977 the iconic Malls Balls, designed by Burt Flugelman, were installed. The Malls Balls have since served as a tourist attraction, a meeting place, selfie scenery, a meme victim and for the daring, an obstacle which must be climbed (Do not attempt).
Rundle Mall is 528 metres long and the longest downtown mall in Australia. With over 400, 000 visitors a week it even surpasses the foot traffic of Adelaide Oval. Shopping > Footy amirite? With over 24.5 million visitors a year the Mall has been featured in columns for magazines such as the Economist and the New York Times.
For the special champagne and canapé breakfast event, sparkling wine from Bird in Hand was served and also poured into a decadent champagne tower while confetti guns rained down as guests sang out three cheers. Guests also sipped on coffees and fresh cold pressed juice by James Place health food cafe and juicery, Raw and Real along with yoghurt and muesli jars, Haigh’s truffles, cream eclairs and savoury canapés.
I’m sure we all have special memories involving the Mall and hopefully for the future generations Rundle Mall will retain it’s character, joyful spirit and open nature, continuing to facilitate those
bank-breaking necessary shopping trips.