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Knoxville shopping is dominated by two large regional malls, Knoxville Center and West Town. Knoxville Center is a two-level mall, located off I-640, with an interior designed to reflect the character of the region. It is anchored by Belk, Dillards, J.C. Penny and Sears and features a multi-screen cinema as well. Popular stores here include Old Navy, Gap, Children's Place, Limited, Gymboree and Bath & Body Works. The more upscale West Town is located on Kingston Pike near the West Hills exit off I-40. Anchored by Belk, Dillards, J.C. Penny, Parisian and Sears the department stores at West Town are larger and more up to date. You would never know this mall was built in the 1970's. It has effectively expanded and updated over the years and now is considered one of the premier shopping centers in the southeast. Retailers include BananaRepublic, Build-A-Bear, Brooks Brothers, Cache, Coach, Guess, J. Crew, J. Jill, Pottery Barn and Williams-Sonoma. There is also a large theater complex on top of the mall and an expansive food court.
Of course, there is more to the local shopping scene than cookie-cutter malls. The older section of Kingston Pike, between Seqouyah Hills and Northshore Road has experienced a renaissance of late and is home to many local specialty retailers. Go to Bennett Galleries for artistic and unique art and furnishings, The Southern Market for for a variety of gifts and interior furnishings, M.S. McLellan for fine clothing and accessories or Green Earth Emporium for linens, candles and other gifts for new agers.
Downtown shopping is still relatively scarce, but that will soon be changing. A rush to develop residential units downtown is also creating demand for diverse shopping and new shops are up and running on Market Square once again. Mast General Store is slated to open on Gay Street in late 2006. If your looking for a unique local souvineir, head to the Knoxville Visitors Center at the corner of Gay Street and Summit Hill for T-shirts, gift baskets and local artistic creations.