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5 posts by Carrie Brenner

  • The 7 Most Exotic Shopping in the USA

    1. Ala Moana Center – Honolulu, HI

    From its koi ponds to the hula dancers who routinely perform on its center stage, sights and sounds of the tropics make Hawaii’s Ala Moana Center in Honolulu rank among the most exotic malls of America.

    Ala Moana is the largest open-air mall in the country, featuring four levels of shopping and nearly 300 stores, from high-end retailers to local souvenir shops.

    But what really makes it exotic is its extensive food court, where you can find Japanese street food, Korean BBQ, Hawaiian kalua pig and poi and more than 70 other dining options. And the most popular place for happy hour, or “pau hana,” is the upper-level Mai Tai bar, where even the locals hang out.

    (photo courtesy of General Growth Properties, Inc.)

    2. King of Prussia Mall – King of Prussia, PA

    It could take two days to see everything in this ridiculously huge mall about 20 miles northwest of Philly. It’s the largest mall on the East Coast and boasts six popular hotels within easy walking distance.

    There’s something decadent about shopping here, even if you can’t afford the Prada bag you’re eyeing.

    The most exotic thing about it may be there’s always a good deal: There’s no sales tax on most clothing and shoes.

    (photo courtesy of the Montgomery County Planning Commission)

    3. Mall of America – Bloomington, MN

    The place in the Twin Cities’ suburbs has a wedding chapel, adventure golf, fight simulators and a theme park complete with roller coasters.

    It has an aquarium that hosts events like sleepovers and scuba diving.

    The mall is even home to an alternative high school.

    It also has some pretty exotic flora, with 30,000 plants and 400 trees growing inside its Nickelodeon theme park.

    (photo by Tim Bartel on

    4. The Palisades Center – West Nyack, NY

    Most shoppers here probably don’t notice, but the mall was built around a 150-year-old burial ground.

    Today, it’s full of life as one of the 10 most-visited malls in America.

    If you tire of the 200 stores, there’s an indoor ropes course to try. Or the ice rink, bowling alley, comedy club or Ferris wheel. It’s not your average mall. It’s colossal.

    (photo by Amy on

    5. Aventura Mall – Aventura, FL

    In a northern suburb of Miami, Aventura Mall is an adventure for shoppers checking out the latest fashion trends.

    It also has a following among the art crowd. It has a museum-worthy contemporary art collection, notably the bronze Tree of Knowledge outside The Cheesecake Factory, reminding people of the nearby Dubli Shopping Mall with its architectural sculptures.

    Maybe you’ll come here to watch the beautiful people. Or maybe the beauty of the mall itself will captivate you.

    (photo by osseous on

    6. South Coast Plaza – Costa Mesa, CA

    Luxury store windows here compete with Orange County’s beaches and sunsets.

    Celebrities and sultans have been among the clientele of this California shopping mall with the highest sales of any mall in America.

    It claims to be the first mall that introduced valet parking to the shopping masses. And its concierge desks and lounges make the shopping experience feel like something special.

    (photo by Eugene Kim on

    7. The Galleria – Houston, TX

    Locals here like to say everything’s bigger in Texas. And where shopping is concerned, you can’t get much bigger than The Galleria, which has more than 350 fine stores and restaurants, an ice-skating rink, two hotels attached and designer labels everywhere.

    Going big here means gargantuan proportions – from the atrium to the chandelier that drips water to the fountain two stories below. There’s a Starbucks the size of a food court.

    And “exotic” here might mean dressing the part. So stop in a store like Pinto Ranch, where you can find a belt buckle the size of, well, you know.

    (photo by Bill Jacobus on

    Jeremy is a content strategist at Top Ten Reviews. You can read his latest guide on DIY Home Security here.

  • Founder and CEO Announced EY Entrepreneur of the Year in Maryland

    Award Recognizes Entrepreneurial Excellence in the Consumer and Technology Services Category announced today that Founder and CEO Kwame Kuadey has received the Ernest & Young 2014 Entrepreneur of the Year™ Award in Consumer and Technology Services category in Maryland. The eight Maryland winners were selected by a panel of independent judges and honored at the annual black-tie event held on June 12th at the Hilton in Baltimore. The EY awards program recognizes high-growth entrepreneurs who demonstrate excellence and success in financial performance, innovation and personal commitment to their business and local community.

    “This is truly an honor,” said Kuadey. ” To have my hardwork and efforts as an entrepreneur validated with such a prestigious award is a moment I will cherish forever.”

    Now in its 28th year, the program has honored the inspirational leadership of such entrepreneurs as Howard Schultz of Starbucks Coffee Company, Pierre Omidyar of eBay, Inc., and Mindy Grossman of HSN. Recent US national winners include Reid Hoffman and Jeff Weiner of LinkedIn; Hamdi Ulukaya, founder of Chobani; and 2013 winner Hamid Moghadam, CEO and Chairman of Prologis.

    As a Maryland award winner, Kwame Kuadey is now eligible for consideration for the Entrepreneur Of The Year 2014 national program. Award winners in several national categories, as well as the Entrepreneur Of The Year National Overall Award winner, will be announced at the annual awards gala in Palm Springs, California, on November 15, 2014. The awards are the culminating event of the EY Strategic Growth Forum®, the nation’s most prestigious gathering of high-growth, market-leading companies.

  • Heath Care Deals: 3 Alternatives to Pain Medication

    Americans love their pills too much.

    The next time you feel aches and pains, think natural. Your body will thank you.

    Here are our top 3 recommendations:


    While yoga is not an immediate fix for unexpected pain like headaches or pulled muscles, it has been shown to be very beneficial for people who suffer from chronic pain. It provides a gentle opportunity for movement without putting undue stress on sensitive joints. Yoga can also help realign poor posture and release muscle tension, which are two known factors in chronic pain.

    It may take a week or two before the effects of doing yoga are fully visible, but adding yoga to a daily exercise routine can help to lessen chronic pain and prevent future flare-ups. People who regularly practice yoga may find themselves suffering from fewer headaches and less back and neck pain than beforehand. Pain is often exacerbated by the presence of mental and physical stress, so using yoga to relieve that stress can greatly reduce the pain as well.

  • We're Moving!

    Due to the relocation of our Processing Center, our office will be closed Tuesday, April 29, 2014. We will reopen at 9:00 am EST on Wednesday, April 30, 2014.

    Our new Processing Center address is as follows:

    6230 Old Dobbin Lane, Suite 190 Columbia, MD 21045

    Please send all customer service requests to We will respond to all requests within two business days.

    Thank you for your patience and understanding!

    - The Team

  • 10 Songs Guaranteed to Get You Moving This Month

    Sticking with your New Year’s resolution to get in shape and live a healthier life can be hard. To help motivate you, the internet’s most popular music blog, Run Hundred has put together a playlist of the top 10 songs for working out this January. This playlist is guaranteed to get you moving and give you the much needed “push” we sometimes need!

    Check out Run Hundred’s full Top 10 Playlist for January below:

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