Today is Dhanteras and also there is mood of festivity. We therefore decided to go to the newly commissioned multiplex theater in Jabalpur – the first in this place. It is named Movie-Magic.
At Jabalpur we had stopped going to movie because of cramped old halls which did not have either decent sitting arrangement or proper sound system.
A few days back, Big Bazaar opened at Narmada Road. Along with it there is also the South Avenue Mall that has three (modern style) picture halls in it. We had seen all these at Bengal (Durgapur) where we would go on holidays to see cinema.
Consequently we were excited of getting to cinema in such halls at Jabalpur. We saw Wake up Sid – an excellent movie by any standard. I can say that after so many months (perhaps two years) we went to cinema and really enjoyed watching movie!
However, compared to 89Cinema it seems that more seats have been pushed into the hall – and the walking space between the rows have been reduced.
We also went to the Big Bazaar. This was the second time within the week we were going to Big Bazar at Jabalpur. However it was still a disappointment that their billing system is still incomplete. So there were people (including us) who wanted to buy certain thing – but could not because their computer system would not take those entries or would take them erroneously.
When on the initial day when we had gone to Big Bazaar, even on that day the billing system did not work. However, on that day – they did manual billing. However today there was not even manual billing. Also, different counters for payment of different things only added to unnecessary confusion – its perhaps a way of them denying discounts!
At Jabalpur similar problem of billing was witnessed at Vishal Megamart when it had opened with much fanfare last year. However Vishal Megamart is “mega” only in name and despite its strategic location now it has reduced itself to a grocery and clothes shop! Moreover at Vishaal everything is V-Fresh – their own brand. And that puts one off shopping at that place. Even various items that they kept initially – they have stopped stocking / selling them.
Compared to this Reliance Fresh is much better – being located in different locations with decentralised working – it is a good place to shop. Initially there was much politics on its opening – as every thella-wala (vegetable vendor) thought that they are going to get out of business. However Reliance Fresh is much more than it – and within a certain sphere gives a good shopping experience – ambience, price, hassle free billing.
Big Bazaar is the new addition to all this. However it seems they are still facing teething trouble – and not providing the shopping experience that we have witnessed of it in other places.
However, none of these places have kept non veg items in their frozen food stock. This is quite a minus – as if these malls bring with them frozen sea food – then definitely they would have got a big market.
At Big Bazaar – the underground Car parking space- though huge in size – is filled with cement dust – which forms a thick layer on the car withing a couple of hours of the car being there.
Given the shopping traffic in such malls – it gives two indications – one Jabalpur is modernising – and thats good. However the old style sellers would definitely lose at least a certain percentage of market share – as most of the goods sold at these malls are outside purchases and not local purchases.
Update 31 October 2009: We went to Big Bazaar (Narmada Road) today evening – and strange thing that the cars were to be parked in an adjacent land. Rs. 15 was being charged for the parking – and no receipt / couterfoil was being given (at entry, a chit was given and on exit that chit was being taken back).
Moreover, the chit said that Rs. 15 was the mall entry fees! (For two wheelers they are charging Rs. 5) So it seems that there is something fishy – about the money being collected !
Update 21 November 2009: We went today – and three / four food shops have opened on the movie magic floor – containing chinese food, indian snacks (eg. we had pav bhaji). etc. The food was good – though a bit pricy. Also, the basement car parking was now much cleaner.
Update 06 December 2009: A good thing that I found today – that for car parking no charges were to be given – if one had purchased something from Big Bazaar. For this, one had to get the car parking coupon stamped from the customer service desk of Big Bazaar! So, its a good thing – the Jabalpur Big Bazaar is getting customer friendly. Also, I found that some of the food shops of Jabalpur had opened their branches at South Avenue Mall viz. Kelly (Sadar), and Cafe Coffee Day (which is a national network, but has a branch at Jabalpur). A Gaming Zone has also been opened – which can be a time pass for some.