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Parking Lot Series: Cinderella City Shopping Mall Englewood, Colorado

Editors Note: We are back to business, as usual, today after last weeks shut down for general site maintenance. Thanks go out to all of our readers for your patience and comments about The Old Motor while this work was being accomplished.

The featured image is a late-1960s view of a section of the parking lot capable of handling up to seven-thousand cars at the Cinderella City Shopping Mall located in Englewood, Colorado. The City is situated about five miles south of Denver, the State Capitol of Colorado. The Shopping Mall (the first one to be established in the area) opened for business on March 7, 1968, and was very successful until other Malls were built and opened in the 1970s and ’80s. The increased competition led to a general decline in business and loss of tenants at Cinderella City in the 1980s and ’90s. It closed for good in 1997 and was later demolished in 1999.

Share with us what you find of interest in the lead image, and the sectional enlargements below courtesy of the Denver Public Library.


38 responses to “Parking Lot Series: Cinderella City Shopping Mall Englewood, Colorado

  1. Interesting to see the white `59 Dodge Coronet sedan pulling into/out of a parking spot among all the late model cars! Even a `61 Impala. Two more oldies in the pack….a lt. colored `57 Rambler wagon parked next to a `62 Plymouth either Belvedere or Savoy.

  2. David,

    Glad you got the computer maintenance done. Your site was missed.

    In the lead photograph, parked on the left near the fire-plug, is a dark 1961 CHEVROLET Impala, which looks like a four-door.


  3. In the lead picture, parked just to the right of the couple walking with a carriage, is a dark 1959 CHEVROLET convertible.

  4. The white sports car on the 5th row, 6th car from the left looks like a Datsun 1500 – 2000. If so, that would make it a bit unusual for the late 60’s. I can recall only seeing one during that time, one owned by my college professor at OU.

  5. Site all better? ( I can see David with sunburned face except for where the sunglasses were) Just kidding, when I had my truck, I’d fake a repair to get a few days off. Anyway, haven’t we seen this picture before? I seem to remember the 2 people talking by the Sunbeam. And that’s another thing, for being liberal Colorado, aside from a Toyota Landcruiser, the Sunbeam, and the many VW’s, there are literally no other foreign cars. I suppose the IH Scout was kind of like a foreign car. Probably just the opposite today and all 4×4’s. What, didn’t it snow in Colorado in the ’60’s? Funny how we managed at all. The ’56 Chevy and shoebox Fords seem to be the oldest cars.

    • Howard,

      I saw that Sunbeam right off as my brother had 2 in the late sixties. One
      to drive and the other for parts.

      I think I see an Opel sedan in there too-
      but I don’t know the 50’s model names – Rekford or Capitan ??? Top, left of center on the last pic.

        • Oh, looky-look, you bet it is. Could there be a Day without a Dauphine? And straight down from the Dauphine and in line with the Sunpine Albeam looks to be an MGB, or at least a Spridget.

  6. Remember this well – I was 8 years old when it opened – was a treat to go there. Downstairs was a small group of shops laid out as a small village called “Cinder Alley” -still have a unique German scene candle I bought for my mom there. Sure if you look closely enough you will see my parents 65 Ford Fairlane 500 in the lot – my brother still has car. Great pics – thanks!

  7. I counted at least thirteen VW Beetles, one IH Scout and one Toyota Land Cruiser. Ah, the simple life.

    • I quit counting Beetles at 20+! That didn’t included numerous Type 3 and a few buses! I spy one 356 Porschje and lots of other yummy cars!

  8. The summer of ’68?
    The newest car I can see is the ’68 Chevy in the third photo.
    A lot of VWs, not many imports, the only sports car I see is the MG Midget/AH Sprite in the center of photo 2.
    And being Colorado, you’d expect to see more 4x4s…but there is an IN Scout in the upper center of photo 2 and a Toyota Land Cruiser FJ in the lower right of photo 3.

  9. David, echoing AML’s comment, I’m so happy you’ve completed your maintenance tasks…you were indeed missed!

    In Item 1 of 2, the left edge with a Porsche 356 is sheared off. In the lower right, a ’57 Rambler Custom Cross Country next to a ’62 Plymouth sedan, likely a Savoy. On the left in the 1st aisle, a ’66 Pontiac LeMans convertible sporting a 326 emblem aft of the front wheel.

    In the 2nd aisle a ’63 Pontiac LeMans Coupe pulling in with a ’59 Dodge Coronet sedan ahead…and just ahead of that possibly a MG Midget or A-H Sprite beside a ’66 or ’67 El Camino. To the right of the El Camino, looks like a pair of ’64 or ’65 Buick Special/Skylark convertibles.

    In the 3rd aisle far side an IH Scout between a ’64 Rambler Classic sedan, probably a 660 and a ’67 or ’68 Mustang entering/leaving a space revealing possibly a dark Sunbeam Alpine.

    In Item 2 of 2, near the right edge appears to be a Toyota Land Cruiser facing a ’56 Chevy 4-door. To the right of that, a 1st-gen Firebird and a 2nd-gen Monza Coupe.
    In the 2nd aisle a pair of ’64-’67 T-birds, one a Landau, followed by a ’67 Dodge Polara convertible and a ’66 or ’67 Riviera
    In the 3rd aisle, on the right a white ’62 Imperial and three cars closer, a dark ’57-’59 Chrysler or DeSoto sedan.

    I notice there’s quite a few convertibles which, in the late ‘60s, was typical in most larger metropolitan areas, whether they had harsh winters or not. I think what encouraged convertible buyers was the presence of more enjoyable roadways to cruise at moderate speeds in those areas….where you didn’t need to take highways to get anywhere.

  10. This place had an underground garage beneath this lot. Back when I was an engineer, I recall inspecting cracking in the concrete columns beneath the lot. I recall that much of the space had to be closed.

  11. In the lower right of the second picture, the driver of his/her 68 Dodge Coronet wagon must have angered someone on the way to the mall. The Toyota Land Cruiser and Chevy camper pickup have the car completely blocked. I guess road rage existed even in the late 60’s.

  12. In Item 1 of 2, in the 4th aisle back, mid-way between the light standard and the wall of the white building…and near the rear of possibly an Econoline van, appears to be a two-tone ‘59 Rambler sedan.

    In the next aisle back, somewhat to the left is the rear view of a white ’59 Mercury 4-dr HT…three cars to the left, a two-tone ’56 Mercury, possibly a Phaeton 4-dr HT.

    In Item 2 of 2, four aisles up, maybe 7 cars from the right end, a greyish ’63 T-bird with its distinctive chrome hash marks on the door.
    In the third aisle up, also 7 cars in from the end and facing the light standard, is the rear of a white T-bird, possibly a ’60.

  13. Great family memories of Casa Bonita at Cinderella City back in the 80’s. Hard to believe so many years have passed.

    • What I remember about that mall were the long walks from parking lots to the mall and those in the long hallways. Parking underneath with entrance on the ground level was a little easier. One entrance came right where there was the eatery I remember most, a Wienerschnitzel. About the Casa Bonita restaurant, built about the same time, but on west Colfax in the JRCS shopping area in the space formerly occupied by J.Joslins department store.

  14. Sad how these malls decimated so many small towns in America in the 60’s. My small town in Ohio became surrounded by malls. Today the town is struggling and the malls are closed. The Pretenders sing it best in : Went Back To Ohio, My City Was Gone.

  15. Dave,
    Thank you for your efforts we hope you get some relaxations while the site was down, you deserve it.

    • Thanks, it took a little less time than we thought so on Friday I drove the Volvo 1800s to Lime Rock Park Raceway in CT to the VSCCA Spring Sprints. On Saturday I ran it in two races, had a great time and drove it back home. Hardly relaxing, but it sure was fun.

  16. Good to have you back! If you could reach into that photo and pick two cars I guess the Porsche and Toyota Land Cruiser would be the most valuable ones in todays market. Bob

  17. So, even in somewhat rural Colorado at that time, there is a dearth of pick-ups! A small number of station wagons, but as mentioned above, not too may 4WDs, though the rear engined VW’s did yoeman’s work in the snow. Look at a modern parking lot and it will be full of psuedo and actual SUV’s and pickups, how times change!

  18. Hi David!

    1) Welcome back!

    2) Who ever thought shopping malls would go so out of favor that they’d be abandoned and bulldozed?

  19. In the middle of the 1st picture a white VW Beetle, left of it a VW 1600TL, directly in front of that another white Beetle with a Renault Dauphine on its left side. On the left side a Porsche 356, two VW Beetle and a VW 1500/1600 Station Wagon.

  20. It’s great to see a photo from “liberal” Colorado. Note that Englewood is a “bedroom community” immediately south of Denver and was not “somewhat rural” in 1968. Cinderella City was quite a big deal when new and had a big fountain inside. Englewood HS held their prom there in 1968. The Forney Auto Museum was located downstairs for a while. Casa Bonita is still at JCRS – miles away.

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