Much of the shopping – from the weekly grocery shop – to finding that LBD for the evening's party is done in a mall or one of the multifacted megastores. Here are the best.
Clothing boutiques, global sports brands and high-end furniture outlets populate the ground floor of Ghana’s largest shopping mall. Glamourous African-inspired fashions fill the racks of Kiki Clothing and Jil Boutique, and a branch of African fabric specialists Woodin and Vlisco have a good range of prints. Also on the ground floor find familiar brands such as Levis, Puma and Swatch. A small food court includes fried chicken outlet Barcelo’s and upmarket bar and restaurant Rhapsody’s, and kids can let off steam in a central play area with a bouncy castle. Upstairs is the territory of Silverbird, which runs a well-stocked book and music store, Ghana’s only multiplex cinema showing current blockbusters, Nollywood and Ghanaian films, and now a new bar Silver Lounge.
Set in Accra’s prestigious East Legon residential community, A&C Square offers a mix of shopping, dining and entertainment – plus access to banking, health clinics and other services. There’s a modern health club, Total Fitness Health Club (see p69) with a swimming pool and children’s play area, and pleasant coffee shops and a good fruit and veg stall in the square.
The newest shopping centre in Ghana is Marina Mall in the ever-expanding Airport City area. There are three floors of shops, and a food court on the top level. There’s a welcome branch of DeliFrance, as well as a fast food outlet of Maquis Tante Marie, a KFC and Marinas, that sells burgers and kebabs. A large balcony overlooks one of the more bizarre sights in Accra, a derelict Ghana Airways plane. Big names in the mall include Benetton and the French franchise Façonnable. Most of the ground floor is given to a large supermarket, one of the best for foreign goods in Accra, as well as Compu-Ghana technology store and a pharmacy (054 916 3695), and kid’s international clothing brand Chicco. Also inside is a branch of All Pure Nature, a pharmacy, and plenty of men’s and women’s fashion stores. There’s a play area, but the video games seem to be the ones making the most racket. This is already a popular mall.
Across the three floors of this mall are dozens of concessions and individual stores that somehow meld into one. Distinct stores include Sony, Gracefield sports store, First Choice beauty salon and a small branch of Vidya bookshop. The rest is dominated by aisles of food, clothing, furniture, household and domestic goods. There is also Choco’Pain for a coffee and pastries. Children can be entertained on the mall’s bouncy castle.Melcom have added branches in Tema (Post Office Road, Traffic Light Meridian, opposite Vodaphone Tema Community 1, 026 4922 600) and Kumasi (Prempeh 2nd Street, Adum, 322 045 578). A recent addition to the group is Melcom Travel and Tours Ltd. It can arrange tour packages to any destination (tagline: Your Destination, Your Dreams...Our Solution). Contact the tour company at Melcom Plus, Kaneshie (Otublohum Street, North Industrial Area, PO Box GP56, 0302 252 984, 024 907636, travels@ melcomgroup.com).
The Shoprite Group of Companies, Africa’s largest food retailer, operates in the Accra Mall, on the Spintex Road, as well as from a new, large, outlet in Oxford Street Mall. In both shops you’ll find a wide selection of foods – similar to any major UK supermarket – including imported meats from South Africa. There’s also a deli counter, and large selections of wines as well as household goods.
Koala is a large supermarket, popular with expats thanks to its range of international goods and a handy Osu location, plus there’s a car park outside. It also offers you basic foodstuffs, bakery, glassware, linens, cookware, electronics and lots more. It’s worth saying that the butcher here is one of the best in Accra. There’s a branch in Airport Residential, off Volta Road.
All manner of modern luxuries – from global groceries (including a new line of Waitrose products) to electrical goods – can be found at this three-storey supermarket. A good bakery and a large deli counter filled with cold meats and cheeses sit to the side of the downstairs food aisles, alongside shelves generously stacked with slabs of well-known chocolate brands. On the first floor there’s perfume, watches, jewellery, phones, TVs and a little coffee shop and restaurant that serves pastas, burgers and sandwiches. There’s WiFi and it’s very quiet. On the second is a large selection of homeware such as bedding, glassware, candles and picture frames. There’s also plenty of high quality cookware. There’s another branch at Maxmart East Legon (A&C Mall, 0302 518 881).