Friendship Heights (July 5, 2019)
We decided to stay close to home today, walking up to the Friendship Heights shops that line both sides of Wisconsin Avenue and straddle the District – Maryland border.
Lining the west side of Wisconsin Avenue is Mazza Gallery, a mall that is anchored by a Neiman Marcus store but also includes a number of other stores, fast food restaurants, and an AMC movie complex. The mall opened in 1978 and was renovated in the late 1990s. The results proved disappointing. As with the rest of Friendship Heights, Mazza is a strange mix of upmarket stores such as Neiman’s and Saks and discount stores such as T.J. Maxx.
Across Wisconsin Avenue from Mazza is Chevy Chase Pavilion, another mall that has continually failed to reach expectations, despite a number of attempts to make it more appealing. Recently, H&M closed its doors, following other short term ventures quickly sailing off into the distance. A few years back, while traveling in Sweden, we visited NK Stockholm department store. We thought something similar might have worked in the Chevy Chase Pavillion space, with a high end eatery on the ground floor surrounded by mezzanine floors containing high end retail. Perhaps it would have been a better location for the Bloomingdale’s across the border in Maryland. However, it’s not all bad, for expats looking to get their fix, the World Market on the Basement level has an extensive range of overseas produce, including candy and beer.