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Report - Oriental City - NW London - May 2014

Discussion in 'Leisure Sites' started by extreme_ironing, May 21, 2014.

  1. extreme_ironing

    extreme_ironing 28DL Regular User
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    I visited this place a few times when I was younger for the Sega arcade :D. It's almost completely gone now, between 2 visits within a span of 3 days the main hall had been destroyed. I'd give it a week or two before it's completely demolished.. The food court was already destroyed except for the front facade when I first visited and almost all the shop fronts had been brought down.

    I checked this place out in December and managed to get into the site but the security was relatively heavy on that occasion incl. dogs ;/. I didn't encounter anyone in my visit a few days ago but yesterday there was a lot noise from within the building somewhere so I didn't stick around for too long.

    I actually didn't have my torch on me the first time (yeah..), just a small LED which was good enough to have a look around but not too handy for photos.. on my second visit I had my torch but only a point and shoot as my other camera is having some repairs done on it, so the latter photos aren't great, also, they're handheld as I was avoiding whoever else was about, but they are good enough to document how it looked. Since the place was falling down around me I figured I might as well get something before it's gone.

    Have copied some history below, but more recently it was partially used as a set for the 2012 Dredd remake :D.

    The centre contained a large oriental supermarket, now relocated to Bayswater, and a food court with a range of foods from different areas of South-East Asia. The food court was immensely popular with surrounding office workers and the North London community; and often became very crowded at weekends.

    Aside from the food outlets, the complex also contained a number of small shops and stalls. Over its history there was a high turnover of shops, with only one remaining original tenant in the facility, the Japanese tableware store, Utsuwa-No-Yataka. The centre also previously housed a shop selling video games and toys imported from Japan, a Sanrio boutique, and one of the largest Japanese bookshops in Europe, called Asahiya Shoten. These have been closed down since 2003. In the period shortly before the centre closed down, shoppers could find a tailor's shop, a jeweller, a hairdresser, a beauty shop, Chinese medicine shops, a martial arts store, and a large furniture store. Oriental City was also host to a Sega Dome arcade which has been a feature since the complex's opening in 1993. The arcade's outer façade was highly noticeable for the large picture of Sonic the Hedgehog attached to it, which had been on the complex since the early 1990s.

    The centre was a focal point for the Oriental community, often hosting weeks which promoted the cultural identity of different South East Asian countries. These events typically consisted of various performing arts, and the promotion of that country's particular cuisine.

    The original Yaohan Plaza also featured a small example of a traditional Japanese garden outside the centre, which was allowed to fall into disrepair after the change of ownership.




    Exterior shots.

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    The main hall looking back towards the entrance.

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    So, this is the main hall 3 days later, roof collapsed inwards. I'm looking down from the balcony that you can see on the above photo on the far right. Was a bit shaky up there!

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    Some hastily captured handheld shots.. ;/

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  2. Gabe

    Gabe 28DL Regular User
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    Looks like you've been busy lately
     
  3. elliot5200

    elliot5200 28DL Regular User
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    Well done for going back after being caught!
    Shame to see it's downfall though, don't suppose we'll be seeing much more of her anymore.
     
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