Mall St. Matthews: Embracing the Past and Future in Louisville, KY

Historical Background

Mall St. Matthews, originally named “The Mall,” holds a special place in the hearts of the people of Louisville, Kentucky. It was the state’s first enclosed suburban shopping mall, developed by The Rouse Company, and opened on March 21, 1962.

Located next to the Watterson Expressway, the mall initially had Kaufman-Straus, A & P, and Rose’s as its anchor stores. The JCPenney anchor store was added in the 1960s, marking the beginning of a new era in shopping.

Mall St. Matthews in Louisville, KY, transcended its role as a mere shopping center, becoming a cherished venue where countless memories were forged. The playful laughter of children resonated as they frolicked on turtle characters near Rose’s or joy in an oversized chess set close to Kaufman-Straus.

The gentle murmur of water from various fountains enriched the atmosphere, adding a touch of serenity. Over the years, the shopping center’s name changed to reflect its growth and transformation. The transformation included significant renovations and expansions, including the addition of a lively food court in the early 1990s.

The late 1980s and 1990s were a time of change for Mall St. Matthews. The name was simplified, and new wings were added to accommodate growing retail demand. The mall expanded in 1995 with Dillard’s, and 1997 Lord & Taylor followed suit. The mall’s layout continued to evolve, reflecting the changing retail landscape and the community’s needs.

Mall St. Matthews has seen stores come and go, expansions, renovations, and even disturbances. A notable incident occurred on December 26, 2015, involving a large crowd, leading to temporary policy changes.

The mall’s history is a rich tapestry that reflects the broader social and economic changes in Louisville and the state of Kentucky.

Current Tenants of the Mall St. Matthews

Today, Mall St. Matthews offers a diverse shopping experience with over 130 stores and services. Major stores include Dillard’s, divided into two sub-stores, JCPenney and a 10-screen Cinemark multiplex. The mall’s tenants range from fashion retailers to dining options, providing something for everyone.

Recent additions include a Dave & Buster’s that opened in 2018, an Ulta Beauty store, and a unique shoe and clothing store named Zappos Unboxed, which opened in 2021. The latest additions in 2023 are All Star Elite, Perfume Villa, Simply Home Store, and Kupbop – K Bbq. The mall’s food court underwent a significant renovation in 2017, reflecting the continuous effort to enhance the shopping experience.

The current tenants of Mall St. Matthews reflect the diversity and vibrancy of the community. The mall is not just a place to shop but where people come together, socialize, and create memories. It reflects the community’s values, tastes, and lifestyle.

Mall St. Matthews Dining: A Culinary Adventure

Mall St. Matthews in Louisville, KY, offers various dining options to suit all tastes. There’s Auntie Anne’s, Charleys Grilled Subs, Chick-fil-A, and Subway for quick bites. International flavors are represented by El Nopal’s Mexican cuisine, Chinese Gourmet Express, and Ruby Thai Kitchen. Sweet indulgences are at Great American Cookies, Lolli & Pops, and Lueberry Acai.

The Cheesecake Factory and Red Robin offer casual dining experiences, while Dave & Buster’s adds entertainment. Health-conscious options are available at Norris Star Farm and Kung Fu Tea, and pizza lovers can enjoy Red Brick Pizza Kitchen Café.

Mall St. Matthews’ dining experience reflects the diversity of Louisville’s culinary scene, providing a satisfying and complete dining experience for all. Whether you’re in the mood for fast food, international cuisine, sweets, or casual dining, the mall’s food offerings have something for everyone.

The Shopping Experience

Shopping at Mall St. Matthews is a unique experience beyond mere retail. The mall’s layout, amenities, customer service, and accessibility create a pleasant and memorable shopping journey.

In addition to shopping, Mall St. Matthews offers a wide variety of dining options and entertainment venues. From enjoying a meal at The Cheesecake Factory to catching a movie at Cinemark, the mall provides a complete and enjoyable experience.

Customer reviews and feedback are vital in shaping the mall’s offerings and services. The management actively seeks input from shoppers to identify strengths and areas for improvement, ensuring that the mall continues to meet and exceed expectations.

Economic Impact

Mall St. Matthews significantly contributes to the local economy. With over 1,000,000 square feet of retail space, the mall provides employment opportunities and generates revenue for the city of Louisville.

The mall’s strategic location and diverse offerings make it a magnet for tourists and visitors. Its proximity to major highways and public transit access ensures that it remains accessible and continues to attract shoppers.

Mall St. Matthews’s success has positively impacted surrounding businesses and the local real estate market. Its presence has spurred growth and development in the area, contributing to the overall economic vitality of the region.

With a history spanning over six decades, Mall St. Matthews continues to adapt and thrive. Its ongoing renovations and expansions reflect a commitment to sustainability and a vision for the future. The mall’s economic impact extends beyond its walls, influencing the broader community and economy.

Community Engagement and Events

Mall St. Matthews has always been more than just a shopping center; it’s a hub for community events and gatherings. The mall has hosted various events that bring people together, from holiday celebrations to charity drives.

The mall’s management actively engages with local organizations and community groups. Whether supporting charitable causes or promoting local culture, Mall St. Matthews actively enriches the community.


Mall St. Matthews is a testament to the success of retail innovation and community engagement. Its rich history, diverse tenants, economic impact, and commitment to the community make it a cherished landmark in Louisville.

The mall’s ongoing efforts to adapt, innovate, and engage with the community reflect the values and aspirations of the people of Louisville. It’s a place that brings people together and contributes to the vibrancy and vitality of the region.

With a legacy spanning over six decades, Mall St. Matthews looks to the future with optimism and determination. Its vision for growth, sustainability, and community engagement ensures that it will continue to be a beloved destination for generations.

Mall St. Matthews holds a special place in the hearts of the people of Louisville. It’s a place of memories, connections, and community. It’s a place that celebrates the past, embraces the present, and looks to the future with hope and confidence.

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