MID VALLEY was a hive of activity, as ALDI celebrated its grand opening last Wednesday.

The Western car park was full, with people coming from all over town to get a peak of ALDI’s bigger Morwell store.

ALDI has relocated from Princes Drive to Mid Valley.

Herds of people exited the shopping centre with an array of overflowing ALDI bags adorning their arms and trollies.

Shoppers were excited to hear about the improvements in the new location, allowing the team to better serve customers.

Not only is the new location a larger store, but it also features more parking space, easier store access, self-scan checkouts, and new freezer and chiller equipment.

To celebrate the grand opening, Mid Valley management organised free giveaways and fun prizes for Mid Valley’s ALDI’s first customers.

Customers presented their proof of purchase to receive free popcorn and a chance to play a game of Spin the Wheel to win prizes.

Announcing the move in late October, ALDI closed its doors at the old Princes Drive store at 3pm on Tuesday, December 5.

The south end of the Mid Valley shopping precinct has undergone big changes; Target and then Coles first left the shopping centre in 2018; and since then, the discount department store Dimmeys has come and gone, leaving the west end side a ghost town.

ALDI’s regional managing director, David Zalunardo, said the business was happy to offer regional customers an elevated shopping experience.

“We’re so pleased to be bringing a bigger and better ‘Good Different’ shopping experience to Morwell locals who already know and love ALDI, and for those who may be yet to experience ALDI’s vast exclusive brand range, curated to deliver the best quality at the lowest possible price,” he said.

“The brand-new ALDI Morwell location will feature a number of innovations that will offer an enhanced shopping experience for our customers, including the addition of self-checkouts, and a larger storefront.”

Mr Zalunardo said customers would not have to worry about any price hikes, with ALDI promising to remain ‘Good Different’.

“Although the store may be in a different location, our Price Promise remains the same – we won’t be beaten on the cost of your weekly shop,” he said.

“We welcome both new and existing customers to journey down to the new store and experience the incredible savings that can be made for themselves.”

ALDI’s new Morwell location has ideally opened just in time for Christmas shopping.

Mid Valley’s fresh food precinct has been transformed, as has the grocery shopping experience in the Valley, providing more than 3000 square metres of fresh retail space.

“It is an exciting time for the centre and the local community as a whole. We are moving into a new era of retailing, and we are excited for the future!” Mid Valley Shopping Centre Manager, Sjaala Harbridge said.

With new contemporary designs, the precinct aims to make shopping at Mid Valley an enjoyable and sought-after experience.

In addition to the West Mall fresh retail development, works will include new public amenities, plus state-of-the-art lighting and finishes.

According to Mid Valley, the Fresh Food precinct is aimed at local and national businesses looking for a contemporary retail environment that’s also conveniently positioned in the heart of Latrobe Valley.

The Express spoke to some eager local customers trying out the new store for the first time.

Suzanne Thompson has always shopped at the Morwell ALDI ever since she moved to town.

“(The new store) is actually closer (to where I live),” she said.

Ms Thompson can see the positives, yet many Morwell residents expressed their concern about the ALDI move on the business’ posts on Facebook.

“I think it’s good that it’s in with Woolies and all the rest of it, but the only downside is now Coles is at the other end of the town,” she said.

“It is more convenient definitely – I use Woolies more than I use Coles, so Woolworths and ALDI being in the same place is great.”

Commenting on the sheer size of the store, Ms Thompson said the difference was certainly noticeable.

“It definitely is bigger, it’s awesome – you can’t see down one end to the other,” she said.

ALDI’s Mid Valley store is open from 8.30am to 8pm, Monday to Sunday.

A new page: Mid Valley has received a revitalisation, with ALDI moving into the complex.

Satisfied: Morwell’s Suzanne Thompson was one happy customer at the new ALDI store.

Celebrate: ALDI celebrated the grand opening of the Mid Valley store on Wednesday, December 6. Photographs: Zaida Glibanovic

Busy bee: ALDI workers were hard at it on Mid Valley opening day.