What’s On goes behind the scenes at Yas Mall Abu Dhabi as it nears opening date (expected November 11) on Yas Island. Find out what shops are in Yas Mall.

VIDEO: F1 in Yas Mall
Who’ll visit Yas Mall?
Dubai’s cool boutiques
F1 after-race concerts
American Apparel
– How to haggle
– Return policies

The wait is almost over. The biggest shopping complex in the nation’s capital is finally set to open, just before the F1 weekend. But what’s inside? What’s On had a sneak peak…

It’s no secret the UAE is fond of a mall or two. Granted, part of the reason is the sweltering days we face for much of the year. But you can’t deny one obvious fact: people here love spending cash and we’d win the gold medal if shopping were an Olympic sport.

Soon shoppers will get to stroll around one of the biggest malls in the country, situated in Abu Dhabi. Yas Mall, in the heart of Yas Island, opens in November, and it’s a whopper. There are almost 10,000 parking spaces across four car parks, and eventually it will be home to more than 400 stores, including the first Geant Hypermarket in the emirate, plus a Debenhams department store (the biggest outside the UK), a House Of Fraser and the UAE’s first Lego store.

**Scroll through our exclusive behind-the-scenes gallery above**

Hungry? You’ll find some 60 food and beverage outlets here, including a Cheesecake Factory, the emirate’s first, and a football-themed Champions League Café, also the first in the Middle East. It’s not just about shopping and eating. Yas Mall will house a Vox Cinema, with 20 screens and a 4DX screen, so get ready for movie theatre chairs that move with the action. Fun Works, meanwhile, is a 60,000sqft entertainment centre for children.

Yas Mall is – in a word – huge, but the great thing that What’s On noticed during our tour is just how bright and airy it is. Much of the ceiling is made of glass, meaning you can forget you’re indoors. The sheer size and variety of outlets mean it’s going to be hard to resist making a trip to Yas, even if you live near one of the malls in the city. And the place is so vast that walking around it for a day means you’ll be able to skip your visit to the gym that evening.

– The complex will be home to three sculptures by international artist Marco Cianfanelli, from Johannesburg in South Africa, and hanging paper fibre art by Dutch artist Peter Gentenaar.
– There are plans to hold art exhibitions at the mall.
– Rogo, one of the new eateries in the mall, is the world’s biggest rollercoaster restaurant. Food is sent to diners on rollercoaster tracks.
– Yas Mall is big on recycling. Some 80 per cent of the steel and 50 per cent of the wood used to build it has been recycled or sustainably sourced.
– Yas Mall will be home to the region’s first Softair Battlezone, a shooting range similar to paintball but using Airsoft guns, which shoot plastic pellets.
– You can access Ferrari World directly from the mall.

Mall munching
Angelina Café, Jamba Juice, PF Chang’s, Shakespeare and Co, Paul, Shake Shack, Bubba Gump Shrimp Co, and The Cheesecake Factory will be in Yas Mall.

Get ready to shop at…
The first… Hamleys toy store, Hollister, Brook’s Brothers, Go Sports, Under Armour, the Lego store, Guylian chocolates in Abu Dhabi.
The biggest… Nike, Zara, Marks & Spencer and Adidas stores in Abu Dhabi.