How Many Of You Remember This Place Growing Up In Denver?

Demolished in 2002 To make room for a “Downtown” Lakewood.

Two story Mall. 1,500 Million Square Foot on 105 Acres. Approximatly 140 stores inside. 4 Anchor Stores – Foleys, Dillards, Montgomery Wards and JCPennys.

Dillards, on the east end of the mall, was the first anchor store to close, then Montgomery Wards on the west end. JCPenny on the south end was soon to Follow, as Foleys on the north west corner of the mall, became the last surviving store for this once megamall. Villa Italia once housed several drugstores including a full sized Woolworths and later a Walgreens. The mall was constructed almost entirely of blonde brick, and sometime between 1985 and 1988, a second story was added, to compete with other malls in the metro area. Due to demographic and economic area changes, the mall languished as many malls of this type do in the latter part of the 1990s. Gasping for life for the last years of its existence, most of Villa Italia became empty, as tenants left in force. The crowd in the latter 1990s changed from people who chose to shop and spend money to a crowd that loitered and ravaged the once glorious mall. This was due to an economic decline in the surrounding areas to the east of the mall. So in the summer of 2001, Villa Italia gasped her last dying breath with almost 100 percent vacancy, her race was run. Villa Italia was demolished and replaced with the Bel Mar.

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21 comments
Savanah Thorne
Savanah Thorne

My first date with my husband of 37 years was at the Villa Italia cinema, on October 22, 1977. We saw Oh God, with John Denver. It will always be Villa Italia to me...

A Lisha Kue
A Lisha Kue

Too me it will always be called VI ....when people started calling it Belmar or Lakewood downtown I was lost and was like oh you mean villa Italia

Nathan Espinoza
Nathan Espinoza

Totally, was a supervisor at Spencer's in high school. Fun times

Michelle Ste Marie Olcott
Michelle Ste Marie Olcott

Oh, yeah! Villa Italia! Lots of memories, some I should probably forget... lol Thanks for sharing!

Mark Ste Marie
Mark Ste Marie

I lived a few blocks from Villa Italia. It was our hangout.

Bradley Langston
Bradley Langston

I miss it for what it was, but times change. I really like that it has become "downtown" Lakewood.

Zelda Hawkins
Zelda Hawkins

We used to skip out of work and go to the movies there in the afternoon. If we didn't go there, we went to Westland.

Cyndi Smith
Cyndi Smith

Palm in the food court. My hang out place in high school.

Richard Bowden
Richard Bowden

That can not be in Denver. We do not have Palm trees here That is what they decorate and use as Christmas trees in Florida

Robin Owens Hodder
Robin Owens Hodder

Villa Italia was my favorite mall, spent a lot of time there as a teenager. I even bought my wedding dress at the Joslins there when it was one of the anchor stores. The Woolworth was amazing, you could spend hours in there. A walk down memory lane....

MJ Silver
MJ Silver

Right?! Remember the pet section? Man I miss Villa

Issac Norris
Issac Norris

The Villa Italia.. Damn those were the days

Marian Rizza
Marian Rizza

Yep... spent lots of time there growing up!

MJ Silver
MJ Silver

Same! So much time and even worked at Its Your Move.