May 18, 2011

What Do You Think Of This?

*UPDATE BELOW*



I'm told this sign is new, at City Stars Mall in Cairo. Let's see now, left to right, shall we?

No skateboarding. I'm assuming that includes skates and scooters. No complaints from me, I think they are annoying in the mall.

Next. No hand holding? What? Why? My kids just got old enough that I don't have to hold the youngest's hand if it's not too crowded so, If I'd like to walk hand in hand with my husband, I don't see the harm. A lot of men in Egypt hold hands with their buddies or walk arm in arm with each other. Some people see it as meaning no PDA's, Public Displays of Affection, meaning kissing or making out. Most people have enough common sense  to not snog in public in Egypt. I've never seen it, even here in Hurghada.

And finally, No Tank Tops? I'm not sure how I feel about this. On one hand I feel like people should respect the country they are in and it's culture and religion. On the other hand, a lot of Egyptian women wear sleeveless tops. Some are not Muslim. Who is City Stars to dictate a strict dress code? I heard it's owned by Saudis but we are not in Saudi. I'm of the mind that to each, their own. I can understand if some one was wearing a really short dress or shorts with a bikini top in the mall, then they can be spoken to and asked to leave.

In conclusion, (this is how I ended all my school essays)  I feel the second 2 signs are just unnecessary.

Update:

Someone on the facebook group I saw this in contacted the mall and this was the reply:

At first I would like to thank you for inquiring about the respective matter from some credible source.

With misfortune, this anti-campaigning started off by the AUC Journal; The Caravan. Some writer in the Caravan Journal, the official journal of AUC, has taken shots of the signs and wrote an article about Citystars claiming that we have established these rules/signs after the revolution. Please allow me to explain to you the factual, correct piece of information.

These rules/signs are amongst a set of 16 rules inside Citystars Shopping Centre that were created in late 2009. They are not new signs or rules, since they have been always played on the digital screens inside Citystars.


Because we are members in the Middle East Council of Shopping Centres (MECSC), which is a business forum/group for leading shopping centres in the Middle East, with malls in Dubai, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Egypt, we have learned that malls are considered one of the most visited sites in town, attracting people and families from different background and age groups and in order to create an appropriate community for everyone, the idea of establishing rules that restrict inappropriate incidents inside the shopping centre is a must. Some of the rules restricted wearing daring outfits or showing exaggerated overt of affection.

We never specified a particular outfit or never reported cases or forbid anyone from entering the shopping centre. On another note, we have reported cases inside the elevator and public area in the shopping centre showing an overt of affection which is by all means not accepted inside any reputable venue and reporting such cases cannot be against human rights or freedom because at the end of the day we do not want to depress certain age groups, class and caliber from visiting the shopping centre or not sending their children to the centre.

With regards to the sign of “weeks ends for families only”, we do apply this rule since late 2009 as well and this is because we received a lot of complaints from serious female shoppers reporting that they have been harassed by undesired customers. Therefore, we dedicated the weekends for families to enjoy Citystars as an entertainment destination for a full-day outing. This rule is only applied on the street gates to filter the customers and create an appropriate venue for families, however, the rule is not applied on the garage/parking gates, so everyone is welcomed as long as he/she can maintain the appropriate ambience for a reputable entertainment destination.

Unfortunately, the reporter of the AUC Journal has not investigated the matter enough. We never received inquiries from the AUC Caravan Team about the respective matter and he even made up stories on his own, such as El Sharbatly Family is testing water since they are Saudis and that the signs have been established right after the revolution. We are anyways taking the action of reporting the latter case to the AUC Student Union and President, and we are expecting from them to cooperate in refuting this piece of news.

Ahmed Safwat | Deputy Marketing Manager

12 comments:

  1. yah holding hands with your hub is fine. i think the middle one would be more directed to young ppl. actually all 3 probably are.

    ReplyDelete
  2. i agree with all the points you made... if a country is not run under full sharia law (which there really are no countries that can say they are run 100% by sharia), they should not lay such laws. If that was the case, then all western countries would have the right to say no to hijab/niqab/islamic practices etc... this is absurd... we should make life easier, not more difficult than it already is... and if the law dictators are gonna preach something they better practice it first... sorry very long comment but i got pissed off :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. WHAT! Egypt is like the hand-holding capitol you got to be kidding me. Eversince I lived over there I learned to "start" holding hands haha. I hope it is referring to something more. You are right Mona, it is strange for them to enforce that kind of dress code since many women do go the short sleeves and even sleeveless route. I wonder how strict they are going to be enforcing these rules and why didnt they put an arabic and english explanation with each sign.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Ange, yea I wonder if there were incidents that caused them to put up these obscure signs.

    Edibe, I agree, it's such a strange mix of ideologies here that it's not like say, Saudi.

    Is-za, lol yea I remember coming as a kid and being like "what the?" when my cousins would hold my hand. I agree there should be more explanation.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Ange, yea I wonder if there were incidents that caused them to put up these obscure signs.

    Edibe, I agree, it's such a strange mix of ideologies here that it's not like say, Saudi.

    Is-za, lol yea I remember coming as a kid and being like "what the?" when my cousins would hold my hand. I agree there should be more explanation.

    ReplyDelete
  6. I will look out for this sign on the weekend!

    I know that they prevent young people from entering the mall, like groups of teens or single men. They only allow families in now. I'm not sure if that's all the time or on certain days but my brother in law has had a hard time coming to meet my husband and I in the mall because he was by himself. They wouldn't let him in. They told him he could only enter if he was with family. We had to go out and come back in with him so they would allow him in.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Amalia, that's so weird! When I was there last year, there were TONS of teens and young people. All taking their fb pics by the fountain. Lol. But maybe this is an after revolution thing.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Yeah Mona, I know what you mean.I have seen groups of teens arguing with security outside about it too.

    Come to think of it though, I have a feeling they might only have this rule on a Friday or something, because it gets so busy there, maybe they are trying to reduce the number ofpeople on the weekends?

    ReplyDelete
  9. Very ambiguous. We have similar signs outside mosques in Malaysia but that's completely understandable right?

    ReplyDelete
  10. Amalia, Hmm, I wonder. I like to go for the cinema and you can spend hours in there browsing and shopping.

    Shahirah Elaiza, yea, of course at a mosque it's a totally different thing. :)

    ReplyDelete
  11. Interesting response from a representative of the mall, I must say.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Shahira, yea, impressed that they replied and promptly.

    ReplyDelete

Thanks for commenting!