Across the road from the new housing utopia I mentioned last week sits one of China’s behemoth “SM” shopping malls.

These huge complexes, four stories high and perhaps 1/4 mile long are sort of China’s modern commercial answer to the Great Wall: The Great Mall.

In the bottom of this complex is a Wal-Mart Supercenter, along with a miscellaneous variety of other shops. The ground and 2nd floors are mostly clothing and department stores–and some of the department stores even include small, clean, attractive play areas for the kids (we’ve made a couple trips to the SM just to give the kids a change of scenery). The third and fourth floors of this complex are reserved for “exhibitions,” but a similar one we visited in Xiamen is packed with 5 floors of shops and restaurants.

Speaking of Wal-Mart, I was amazed to learn that there are now 56 Wal-Mart locations in China, with plans to open perhaps that many more in the coming few years.

And Yes, most of the stuff on the shelves is marked “Made in China.” 😉

Here are the photos….

A panorama of the front of the SM mall in Qingyang–and that’s Jet Li you see on one of the banners in the fourth photo; he’s now endorsing a high-end Jinjiang-based men’s clothing company:

Close-ups of a couple of the 3-story banners:

A couple interior scenes: