Franklin Mills Mall, Philadelphia
Named for Benjamin Franklin, the mall houses 200 stores. Franklin Mills, the Landmark of the Discount Shopper, offers bargain hunters top designer names at up to 60% off designer merchandise every day — with no sales tax on clothing in Pennsylvania (Just like in OREGON but in Oregon, even colognes, electronics, appliances, PS # and others HAVE NO SALES TAX!) This 1.7 million-square-foot enclosed mall is located only 15 miles from Center City Philadelphia and is home to 200 great stores, two food courts, seven theme restaurants and a 14-screen movie theater. The mall consists primarily of factory outlet stores. The entrances are individually color-coded, for quick reference to the specific location of entrances and exits located around the mall; they are the Blue, Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, and Aqua. Each color corresponds to "neighborhoods" within the mall.
It is a great outlet mall with many different retailers. Unlike other outlet mall, it is an indoor one with 4 main entrances. They are all connected and thus, even though it is raining out there, you can still enjoy shopping there the whole day without getting wet. They even have a theater. If the husbands and kids get tired shopping with the lady, you can send them to the theater to catch a movie. Also, there is a Dave and Buster.
Hours: Mon-Sat 10am-9:30pm, Sun 11am-6pm
What to buy: Franklin Mills features the best names in manufacturers' and retail outlet stores including Off 5th Saks Fifth Avenue, Polo Ralph Lauren Factory Store, Neiman Marcus, Banana Republic, GAP, Bed Bath & Beyond, Children Place, H&M, JC Penny, Levi’s, OFF 5th Saks Fifth Avenue, Old Navy, etc.as well as high quality entertainment venues including AMC Theatres, Dave & Busters Grand Sports Cafe' and various restaurants. Stand-alone stores adjacent to the main mall include Walmart, Super Fresh, and Dick's Sporting Goods, plus various fast food eateries and restaurants. In addition, there is a neighboring strip mall called "Franklin Marketplace." Also included on site are a Bally Total Fitness gym, a non-denominational church, a Sam's Club, and a Toys "ß" Us.
Only have $50 and need a cocktail dress RIGHT NOW? Get thee to Franklin Mills, a giant outlet mall that attracts tourists from all over the East Coast. Lest you worry that that means the merchandise is nothing more than Liberty Bell-printed T-shirts, know that you will be fighting the locals for the best bargains. Ann Taylor, Saks, Nordstrom, Benetton, and other major retailers all have cut-rate outposts here, and while you'll have to dig through rack after rack to find the gems among the garbage, the sense of accomplishment at finding a better bargain than you thought possible is worth it. If the prospect of finding Ann Taylor jeans for $15 or Aeropostale tank tops for $3 appeals to you, Franklin Mills is Mecca. The bargains are heavy on the clothing side; if you're looking for, say, books or furniture, you'll be mostly out of luck. Women in the regular-size range should check out Group USA, an off-price sportswear, formal wear, and bridal retailer; while the labels don't have brand names on them, the quality-to-price ratio is high. Saks Off 5th is always worth a look
What to pay: A Lot less than in New York, New Jersey, Delaware and Maryland Area since there is no sales tax on clothes. (But Better to go to OREGON for NO Sales Tax on all Items!)
This is an outlet mall located in the far far Northeast Philadelphia. It's not bad, although this mall has seen better days about four or five years ago, and it has about 200 stores. Not all stores are outlet stores but a lot of them are and the prices are a lot lower than in other malls. There are stores like Off Saks 5th Ave., Kenneth Cole, Lucky Brand, Bebe, Neimann Marcus Last Call, Marshalls, Burlington Coat factory, Ralph Lauren, Polo, Nautica and a bunch of other stores.
What to buy: Whatever you want. They have a wide variety of stores and you can find just about anything you need.
Just went to the Franklin Mills Mall and did some nice shoppings. As said earlier the mall is a mixture of outlet stores and usual stores and you can get some pretty nice bargins. If you look for real bargins, i.e. prices you cannot resist. The outlet of 5Saks is worth visiting, here you get real upscale brands (more upscale than Nike, Timberland, Ralph Lauren etc.) with a 70% and sometimes even 90% reduction on retail. Still some bucks, as a U$ 200 shirt will cost you U$ 60, but whereelse do you get such a shirt for this price. Another big store is the MEXX store, a brand not so much known in the US, but very popular in Europe (there it has about the same standing as Ralph Lauren). The MEXX store there offers only bargeins; thus you do not see their full range of products, but what they couldn't sell elsewhere. But what they have is really cheap.
There is one down to the mall, it looks rather ugly. Thus if you want a shopping experience that goes beyond finding bargeins, you will be disappointed. It is a long one storey mall and you need to do a lot of walking. As the mall is one line, it does not matter where you enter it, you have to walk the mall and then walk back. Even if you start in the middle as one other VT suggested, you would need to walk from the middle to the left end and then back to the middle and then to the right end and then back to the middle. Thus no matter where you enter, to see all shops you walk the whole mall twice. A good strategy might be to park your car at one end of the mall and walk it through to check the offerings and then on your way back (after you have seen all) you collect (buy) what you want. This at least ensures that you do not need to carry your shopping bags twice through the whole mall.
Some really good stores here... Saks 5th Avenue, Neiman Marcus, Kenneth Cole, Bebe and BCBG are amoung my favorites here! Huge Marshalls has some great housewares!
You'll need a car or you can try to make arrangements with your hotel for an organized bus trip. A taxi ride would probably run you at least 30-40 bucks. A rental would be worth it for time and convenience.
What to buy: Women: BCBG, Bebe, Saks, Neiman Marcus, Kenneth Cole
Men: Kenneth Cole, Saks
Kids: Julian's (arcade, large screen TVs, pool tables and food) plenty to keep the kids (young and old) occupied for hours!
Drinks and Food: Mexican Post
A whole bunch of outlet stores, while as not as good as some Euro and outside NYC ones, it has a nice selection. Last Call (Neiman Marcus clearance), Off 5th (saks fifth avenue cleareance), Ralph Lauren Polo, Marshalls (an off price store) Megastore, and more in the mall, while you can find a Walmart, Comp USA, a large Dollar store, supermarket, Pier1 outlet (ethnic inspired home furnishing) and much more on the Mills property.
This mall is not your normal city mall. Franklin Mills is made up of mostly outlet stores. There are similar malls like this throughout the U.S. i.e. Potomac Mills, Arizona Mills, St Louis Mills, etc.
If you are driving, park in the center parking lots of the mall for easy access. This is because the mall is one story and long with one corridor. So, you can see all the stores on both sides of the mall as you are walking. I made the mistake on my first visit of parking on one end of the mall......and then having to walk all the way back to the other end to get back to my car. :) So.. pack your walking shoes haha.
Here is a list of some of the stores in the Mall
Bed Bath & Beyond, Boscov's, Burlington Coat Factory, ESPN X Games Skatepark, Group USA, JC Penney Outlet Store, Jillian's, Last Call! Neiman Marcus, Marshalls Megastore, Modell's Sporting Goods, OFF 5TH Saks Fifth Avenue Outlet, Off Broadway, and Sam Ash Music
BCBG, Casual Corner Annex, Gap Outlet, Kenneth Cole - New York, 9 West Outlet, Old Navy Outlet, Polo Ralph Lauren Factory Store, Polo Jeans Company Store, Reebok/Rockport/Greg Norman, Tommy Hilfiger
Check out my travelogue for pics of the Mall :)
Monday - Saturday 10:00 a.m. - 9:30 p.m.
Sunday 11:00 a.m. - 7:00 p.m.
MEMORIAL DAY HOURS 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.
What to buy: Some of the major stores use these malls to get rid of overstocked items.. discontinued items.. out of season and so on. You can find some good deals. However, you need to realize that not all the prices are that great. Some prices can be just as expensive as any regular mall or store. But, if you are an informed consumer, you can definitely find some good deals here.