Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Tanger Outlet Mall (Mebane)

As you gear up for your Black Friday shopping, let's talk a little about the all-new highly anticipated Tanger Outlet Mall in Mebane. This place is brand new, and we were all pretty excited it was going in (just in time for the holidays, those geniuses).

Right off of I-40, this was a quick, easy, approximately 40-minute drive for me from Chapel Hill.

There are many big name storefronts here: JCrew, Banana Republic, Nike, Coach, Saks, Guess, Nine West, LOFT, Michael Kors, Van Heusen, Polo Ralph Lauren, and the list goes on. There are over 50 stores here. A seriously good place to "get your shop on."

In the kids department, there are clothing stores and a Toys R Us Express. The clothing stores for kids apparel are: Carter's, The Children's Place, Gap Outlet, Gymboree Outlet, and OshKosh B'gosh.

So one thing that was a surprise was that these aren't all technically outlets. Some are indeed "factory stores" and "outlets," but even though this is a factory outlet center only a proportion of these are actually outlet stores. So watch the store name to see if it is an outlet or not. Thinking that these would all be outlets, Sarah C. and I weren't really "wowed" by the prices. We were "wowed" though by the options and the size of the stores. For example, the Carter's store was big. We've reviewed the one in Morrisville for you, of course, but this one was huge.

The mall is very nice and new. It is an outdoor mall, meaning that the walkways are outdoors. But they are covered from the sun and rain with some very pretty awnings. You aren't protected from the temperature but you are protected from the elements. It makes for nice shopping, in my opinion. It doesn't feel too claustrophobic. And even though the parking lot was jammed pack and there were obviously a lot of people here, we didn't feel crowded out. The mall could handle the people.

For eats, there aren't a lot of options. There is a pretzel shop and stand but for a meal Subway is the only game in town. Because of that it gets crowded. A burger place is going in soon, but isn't up and running yet. I would plan to eat before going or after. And bring snacks and drinks for the kids (although they will probably still beg you for quarters for the candy machines and for a cinnamon sugar pretzel).

For kids, there is a great play place outside on one end of the mall. It is, of course, brand new. It has synthetic ground cover, was generally safe play for kids 2 and up, was big, and covered by huge sail shades. It was pretty and obviously fun for kids of all ages (including one 17 year old I saw doing the slides with his sister). The negative is that the barrier is a low-wall and some plants, and then it is out to parking lot and traffic. So it is really easy for a case of the Runaway Babies to turn scary very fast. Diligent eyes parents! But it makes for a great break from the shopping and strollers for the kids.

Throughout the Outlet Mall there are ride on toys for quarters that are also a big hit.

For Black Friday, stores open at 12am on Thanksgiving night and remain open all night and through til close on Friday without stop. And, of course, there are all kinds of deals to be had on the 26th. Good luck & be safe out there.

Tanger Outlets in Mebane
4000 Arrowhead Blvd (Exit 154 off 1-40/1-85)
Mebane, NC
(800) 409-3631
Hours are Monday thru Saturday 10 am - 9 pm; Sunday 11 am - 7 pm


At November 24, 2010 at 1:31 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh yeah, you really can't expect big bargains at outlet centers anymore - maybe when the first real factory outlets opened years ago in the East, you could do well on seconds, but now, an outlet mall is really just a mall.

I always assess things at outlet malls like I do at regular malls - is it a price I am willing to pay? Is this an item I will get a lot of use out of? If so, then I buy it, knowing that usually outlet stores have their own specially-produced merchandise that is not the same quality as the regular stores. The Gap outlet isn't even really "The Gap" - a manager at the Southpoint Gap told me that they are a totally different entity who purchase designs from The Gap proper and produce them more cheaply.

That said, I am thrilled that the new outlet mall is there, and if you go the "back way" down 54 through Carrboro to Mebane Oaks Road, it takes less than half an hour from Chapel Hill! Depending on where in CH you live, of course.

PS - I would love to know where the nearest place to buy a coffee to the outlet mall is. I was standing in line for coupons last week and two people had Starbucks cups in their hands, I assume they were purchased somewhere en route to the mall, as there is no Starbucks there.

- love this blog! I check it every day :-)

another mom in CH

At November 24, 2010 at 8:51 PM , Blogger chapelhillmom said...

That is crazy about Gap- I had no idea! I guess I am totally behind the times. Thanks so much for the information. Alas, I can't help on the coffee front. I didn't see anything around there while there, and is not helpful (Burlington is the closest). I do know there is a local coffee shop in downtown might be able to do that?
Thanks so much for the post and the new enlightening information!

At November 26, 2010 at 7:32 AM , Anonymous Raleigh Mommy said...

As usual, good info! I check your blog often and as a new mom, it's been a great resource for things to do in this area. We took a trip to the Mebane outlets and I posted some tips (it must have been less crowded when you went! It was crazy the day we were there, and it was mid-week).

I'd also be interested in knowing where people got their coffee. :) Next time we go I'll try to scope it out and post on my findings ..

At November 26, 2010 at 8:58 AM , Blogger chapelhillmom said...

What a fun site, I hadn't seen it before! I love it (adding it to our links)! And I didn't find the nursing rooms, so that is great information to have for our moms. Fantastic.

Yeah, I was surprised it wasn't more crowded than it was when we went. I mean, it wasn't a ghost town, but we were expecting it to be a mad house. And we had plenty of room to maneuver the strollers, play on the playground, sit, etc. Although I bet that gets crazier these upcoming weeks....

Thanks so much for the post!

At November 26, 2010 at 12:01 PM , Anonymous Raleigh Mommy said...

Oh cool, appreciate you adding me to your blogroll!:)


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