The Florida Mall is a super regional enclosed shopping mall located in unincorporated Orlando, Florida, on the southeast corner of Orange Blossom Trail and Sand Lake Road; it opened in 1986. The facility was developed by Eddie DeBartolo of DeBartolo Realty; it is currently managed by Simon Property Group, which owns 50%, having fallen to Simon following the 1996 merger of Simon and DeBartolo Realty into Simon DeBartolo Group. With 1,849,000 sq ft (171,800 m2) of gross leasable area and over 250 retailers, it is one of the largest single-story malls in the United States.
Among the major retailers in the buildings surrounding the mall are Toys “R” Us and Rooms To Go, as well as a business plaza and several restaurants. The Florida Mall once controlled but sold in 2013 an outdoor shopping plaza, The Terrace at The Florida Mall, next door to the east on Sand Lake Road. It features a Target, Marshalls and American Signature Furniture.
The mall is anchored by Dillard’s, Macy’s, JCPenney, Dick’s Sporting Goods, The Crayola Experience, and Sears,
The Florida Mall is located close to Orlando International Airport and many other Orlando attractions including Universal Orlando Resort, Walt Disney World and SeaWorld Orlando. The Florida Hotel contains 510 guest rooms and suites. The hotel was built by E.J. DeBartolo and owned in partnership with Pratt Hotel Corporation of Dallas, TX. Originally branded as a Crowne Plaza, then as a Sheraton Plaza, the hotel was sold to Adam’s Mark in 1996. In 2004 the hotel was purchased by a group headed by the Bank of Scotland.
The mall opened on March 12, 1986. In the late 1990s Dillard’s opened one expanded two-story store on the east end of the east-west oriented mall with JCPenney (opened with the mall in 1986) at the opposite end. Lord & Taylor opened a new location at the mall in 2001, only to close in 2006 citing a weak and competitive regional marketplace. The old second Dillard’s store across from Saks Fifth Avenue was demolished and a new extension of the mall was added with two parallel north-south oriented hallways with a Burdines (now Macy’s) at the south end where both hallways merge and end. Another hallway was added later on the one further east with a Nordstrom (closed August 2014, now divided into Crayola Experience and Dick’s Sporting Goods) at the end completing this expansion. American Girl opened in fall 2014.
On February 24, 2012 Orange County Sheriff’s deputies were called in with riot-gear to disperse a rioting crowd of over 3,000 people waiting for the release of the new Nike Galaxy Foams at Foot Locker.