Your Guide to CrossIron Mills

Your Guide to CrossIron Mills
Your Guide to CrossIron Mills
Tips from a shopping expert

Your Guide to CrossIron Mills

Make a plan for shopping your way through one of Canada’s largest outlet centres

All photos by Linda Ho.

 

No matter where people go, shopping finds a way onto everyone's itinerary.

When I was young, I would go to California to visit my grandparents with my mother and aunt. They were partners in crime when it came to shopping, spending hours at the local outlet mall shopping for souvenirs. As time went on, I began to understand and appreciate the long hours spent finding the perfect fashion gem.

My mom, my aunt, and I continued our annual trip to California and, as I got older and appreciated the art of shopping, outlet hunting has become one of my main hobbies!

If you like anything related to fashion, trends, style, or hunting for bargains, CrossIron Mills is the place you want to be. CrossIron Mills is Calgary's main destination for affordable shopping and a great destination for entertainment and dining.

Here's all you need to know about CrossIron Mills to plan an unforgettable shopping experience.

Take a selfie at Campfire Court

Take a selfie at Campfire Court

Medals celebrating Alberta athletes near Hockey Life in the Sport Neighbourhood

Medals celebrating Alberta athletes near Hockey Life in the Sport Neighbourhood

Navigating CrossIron Mills

CrossIron Mills is the largest outlet shopping centre in Alberta. If you are ready to shop, this is the place for you!

The centre has six entrances so, no matter where you park, you'll have quick access to mall. Besides the assortment of retail shops, CrossIron Mills provides you with a flavour of Alberta's geographic regions, landmarks, and cultural icons.

There are six courts providing great backdrops to the many selfies you're going to take, as well as six themed neighbourhoods that you can explore, feeling like you're roaming the different landscapes of the province.

The six neighbourhoods consist of the Fashion Neighbourhood, the Resources Neighbourhood, the Fossil Neighbourhood, the Sport Neighbourhood, the Ranch Neighborhood, and the Entertainment Neighbourhood. Anyone who knows me will find me in the Fashion Neighbourhood in search of more clothes!

As you roam the shopping centre, pay attention to some of the unique architecture. At times, you'll feel like you are in the Wild West as you walk into the Ranch Neighbourhood. Selfies with the giant campfire located in Campfire Court (Entrance 2) are a must. If you've never camped before, this might be the next best thing. Look up as you walk past Hockey Life in the Sport Neighbourhood, where you'll see the oversized medals that celebrate Alberta's athletes.

CrossIron Mills’ layout is similar to a figure 8, so follow one direction through the mall and you'll pass every store and notable architectural element on your visit.

I recommend a full day to find an outfit that looks this good!

I recommend a full day to find an outfit that looks this good!

Find styles for any season at CrossIron Mills

Find styles for any season at CrossIron Mills

How much time do I need to explore CrossIron Mills?

To maximize the trip, spend a full day at CrossIron Mills. If you love shopping and you want to get the full experience that CrossIron Mills has to offer, have lunch at the food court around noon, shopping and exploring in the late afternoon, a little pampering before dinner, and end the night with a movie. At a minimum, you'll need at least a half day to explore the shopping on its own.

To beat the crowds, visit on weekdays. Restaurants are less busy, so reservations are not required. Weekdays also have shorter wait times in stores for fitting rooms. Wednesdays are the quietest day for the mall.

How to get to CrossIron Mills

CrossIron Mills is far from where I live, so I tend take my car. I also love driving to the mall to give me more space to carry all my shopping bags in my trunk!

From most hotels and homes in Calgary, you’ll take Deerfoot Trail northbound until it turns into Highway #2 and drive for about 5 minutes outside of the city limits until you see CrossIron Drive and exit. Another option is to take Stoney Trail until you reach Deerfoot and follow the signs leading you to Red Deer or Edmonton. The location is super easy since it’s on a major highway, and I promise, if you are heading North on Deerfoot, you won’t miss it!

Inside Bass Pro Shops at CrossIron Mills

Inside Bass Pro Shops at CrossIron Mills

Where to shop at CrossIron Mills

If you’re looking to wander through the mall and take it all in, here are some stores I’d recommend that you can’t miss:

Bass Pro Shops 

Bass Pro Shops also offers a laser shooting arcade, fudge shop, fish feeding programming, and seasonal events like Santa’s Wonderland and the Great Pumpkin Celebration. They also host informational sessions with industry experts.

Outlet and factory stores

Forever 21

You have to try butter pecan coffee at Second Cup

You have to try butter pecan coffee at Second Cup

Milestones at CrossIron Mills is a great place to catch up with girlfriends

Milestones at CrossIron Mills is a great place to catch up with girlfriends

Food at CrossIron Mills

After your shopping spree, take a little breather and grab a snack or a meal at one of the 24 eateries that CrossIron Mills has to offer.

If a meal is too heavy for what you’re looking for, stop at Second Cup for a caffeine fix. At Second Cup, there is a flavoured drip coffee that changes daily and can range from something seasonal like egg nog to classics like Irish cream. If the daily flavour is butter pecan, then I’m telling you to stop in and grab a cup! It smells and tastes delicious.

There are three sit-down restaurants that visitors can dine at. Don’t be put off if you see a line at any of these restaurants because these move quickly and you’ll be eating in no time.

XSCAPE Entertainment Centre

XSCAPE Entertainment Centre

Non-shopping activities at CrossIron Mills

Factory outlets mean you can designer items for substantial savings

Factory outlets mean you can designer items for substantial savings

Budgeting and payments options

CrossIron Mills is an affordable outlet centre that provides endless of options for shoppers. Everyone is destined to find something within their budget.

Outlets and Factory stores offer big name brands at substantial discounts, making luxury items accessible to many shoppers.

To make shopping even more accessible, retailers take many forms of payment including cash, debit, Visa, MasterCard, American Express, AliPay, China Union Pay, and WeChat Pay, though not every business will take all these forms of payment. If you are unsure if all CrossIron Mills retailers will accept your form of payment, visit Guest Services for further assistance.

If you are visiting from Asia and prefer to pay via AliPay, China Union Pay, or WeChat Pay, you can visit the Guest Services Centre in the Ranch Neighbourhood to purchase CrossIron Mills gift card that can be used for any business in the mall. This means that even if your favourite restaurant or store is not currently accepting one of these payment forms, you can buy a CrossIron Mills gift card from Guest Services using AliPay, China Union Pay, or WeChat Pay and use this as a form of payment anywhere in the mall. 

Pick up some boots and a Park Pass for the mountains

Tourist services and discounts at CrossIron Mills

If you’re a serious shopper and spend more than a combined total of $350 at three different stores in one day, visit Guest Services who will give a signature free gift. The more you spend, the better the gift is!

CrossIron Mills is an accredited visitor centre, and if you’re looking for visitor information in the north side of the city, CrossIron Mills can help you plan your exploration of Calgary.

CrossIron Mills is a destination for everyone, whether you are a shopaholic, a foodie, or someone that purely enjoys some quiet time at the movies. There are countless shops to enjoy, great eateries, and lots of things to see. I’m positive that you won’t leave empty handed and you’ll find a souvenir to bring home, just like I would at outlet malls in California as a child before I became a self-proclaimed shopaholic!

By
Linda Ho

I've been in Calgary for the past 10 years and I love watching how fast Calgary has grown. Calgary is home and seeing the fashion, art, and culture scenes expand as much as they have has made me enjoy the city ten times more!