Arizona Mills Adventures

Author: Michael Martin

Posted on: November 25, 2015
Last updated on: July 6th, 2018 at 10:27 am


It’s easy to spend the whole day in Tempe at Arizona Mills. With a mile of outlet and specialty stores, unique eateries in a newly revamped food court and several options for entertainment, Arizona Mills is a destination for almost everything. There are more than 175 retail and outlet stores such as the Burlington Coat Factory, The Disney Store Outlet, At Home, Nike Clearance Store, H&M and more. Ready for a break from shopping? Be sure to check out SEA LIFE Arizona Aquarium, Harkins IMAX Theatre or Tilt Studio. Special tip: Arizona Mills is a huge mall – cut through H&M or Forever 21 if you want to get to the opposite side of the shopping mall quickly.

The SEA LIFE Arizona Aquarium is one of my personal favorites, and I always recommend it because it is entertaining for children of all ages as well as adults. Thankfully, Arizona Mills has come up with a simple, yet useful navigation system, with the mall separated into different “neighborhoods,” each with entrance/exit points. Located in “Neighborhood 1,” SEA LIFE waits patiently, glittering with sea-themed merchandise from the gift shop. Not only does SEA LIFE have prickly lionfish, gliding stingrays, bobbing jellyfish, and swift sharks, but it also has a 360 degree “ocean tunnel,” a path in which guests are left breathless by the all-around view of ocean creatures swimming and interacting with the environment. SEA LIFE also has educational talks, viewable feedings, and much more, but my all-time favorite is the Temple of the Seahorse area. On my first visit, a potbellied seahorse came to the front of his tank to observe me before he riled up the rest of the tank. A few minutes later, the whole group of seahorses was dancing around in front of my face, almost as if they were trying to show off or entertain me. It’s surreal to be so close to these creatures that you can see their tiny dorsal fins propelling them through the water.

After I’ve been thoroughly charmed by sea creatures, my next stop is usually the mall food court, located in Neighborhood 6. Some of my favorites from the food court include Sukotto Japanese Grill and Villa Italian Kitchen, but there are also options for salads, smoothies, coffee, burgers, Mexican food and more. In addition to the great food selection, there’s also a carousel for little ones. Don’t feel like eating in the food court? Not a problem, since Arizona Mills has numerous sit-down restaurants. Patrons can enjoy the Rainforest Café, the eatery with aquariums and light and sound effects, or Garcia’s, Joe’s Crab Shack, Claim Jumper, and more either within the mall or within walking distance around the premises. After lunch, I try to make a stop at Sweet Daddy Cupcakes, located nearby in Neighborhood 1. Here, I can pick-up a baked treat ranging from cupcakes with vanilla frosting and edible glitter to marshmallow cream and a cherry on top. The Adidas Clearance Center and Charlotte Russe (two of my favorites) are also close to this area, sitting within Neighborhood 6 next the mall food court.

Ready to be entertained some more? Arizona Mills is also home to Tilt Studio, an indoor arcade-like center with games, prizes, candy, an in-house restaurant. The mall also houses a Harkins Theatre as well as an IMAX Theatre experience, offering guests plenty of alternative-to-shopping options.

For the young, and the young at heart, head to Sanrio in Neighborhood 4, a small store for Hello Kitty school supplies, cooking accessories, and home décor – it’s the perfect place for fans of the character, but children are particularly fascinated with the shelves of stuffed animals and the explosion of pink, sugary candy. Between entrances 4 and 5, there is a children’s play area that will keep the little ones entertained, containing lots of equipment for children to climb on and have fun. Speaking of having fun, Arizona Mills also has a supply of “Those Animals,” which are electric-powered, ridable stuffed animals. Guests can rent one or several for the whole family while exploring Arizona Mills.

Next, At Home, the super-store for indoor and outdoor décor in Neighborhood 3, is a very popular spot at Arizona Mills. At Home sells pillows, bedding sets, wardrobes, patio furniture, vases, wall art, seasonal decor and more on display year-round. In Neighborhood 2, The Nike Clearance store and Gap Outlet are always a big hit.

With so many things to do and a vast variety of possibilities, Arizona Mills is a Tempe destination that visitors won’t want to miss, and also one that locals flock to time and time again.

SEA LIFE Arizona Aquarium

SEA LIFE Arizona Aquarium


Arizona Mills in Tempe AZ

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