IKEA Kicks Off Its North American Expansion with the Opening of a New Store in its Hometown
Furniture World Magazine
IKEA has always considered the Philadelphia area its hometown. The leading home furnishings retailer kicked off its aggressive expansion plan in North America with the relocation of its first U.S. store, which opened in Plymouth Meeting, PA in 1985. The new store, located at 400 Alan Wood Road in Conshohocken, PA, officially opened its doors on Wednesday, January 15 and is the first of 50 new North American stores to open in the next ten years during this expansion endeavor.
"IKEA is proud to have planted its first U.S. roots here eighteen years ago, and today we are thrilled to continue to grow with the community. It is our pleasure and honor that the IKEA expansion plans begin in our North American hometown," said Doug Smith, store manager, IKEA Conshohocken. "Our new expanded store in Conshohocken will offer shoppers greater variety, more home furnishings and design options then they've ever experienced before."
Highlights of the new IKEA Conshohocken store include:
More Space, Products, Inspiring Design Ideas - No longer limited by space, the new 325,000 square-foot store offers more than 9,000 products ranging from sofas and bookcases to clocks and dishes. Additionally, the new store features 46 room displays offering creative and unique approaches to efficiently organize space and inspiring design ideas for any room in the home.
A New Marketplace Layout - Currently being tested by IKEA, the Conshohocken store features a new Marketplace square grid layout with spacious aisles, display islands as well as natural light from accent windows that shoppers can sit by and relax. An additional convenience is the introduction of the first U.S. IKEA Market Hall Café situated in the center of Marketplace. Shoppers can grab a quick cup of Swedish coffee or a snack, take in an IKEA audiovisual show, and then easily move into a variety of departments, from bedding and bath to lighting and cookware.
Model Home Displays - With five model home displays depicting different "life situations" complete with bedrooms, living rooms, bathrooms, kitchens and more, shoppers are provided with a wide variety of design solutions and home furnishings ideas. The displays include defined surrounding walls creating the look and feel of being inside an actual home. They also feature information about the "dwellers", from a single mother and her daughter to a family with two children, to help shoppers easily relate and feel inspired by the setting.
Just for Children: Småland and Other Family-Friendly Features - Developed with inspiration from the company's Swedish roots, Småland is a supervised play area for children who meet the height requirement of 36"-54", which replicates the look of a typical farmhouse and forest in Sweden. Children can climb on make believe rock walls, pine trees and a wooden shoe, and join puppet shows and other interactive activities. For children who don't meet the Småland height requirement, they can find family-friendly play kiosk areas throughout the store designed for children with their families on-hand! An extra special children's feature is seen in some of the display areas called, "mouse holes," where younger visitors to IKEA can move in between displays using an entryway specially created and in proportion to our smaller shoppers. Also for our younger visitors, IKEA offers specially-designed strollers.
More IKEA Conshohocken at a Glance
… Co-Worker Family - Maintaining its current 275 co-workers, IKEA has also hired an estimated additional 160 co-workers from the local area.
… The Travelator and Parking - IKEA Conshohocken offers 1,400 total dedicated parking spaces which includes an underground garage with 550 parking spaces. To enable shoppers to easily take their shopping carts to the underground parking area, IKEA has designed the Travelator. This escalator-like mechanism makes it possible for both the shopper and their cart to be transported together from one floor to the next. Another convenience includes the availability of prime parking spaces for our shoppers with young children.
… Double the Convenience - With more products and design ideas, the store has also doubled the number of checkout lanes (28) as well as loading spaces (50) so shoppers' can easily load their purchases in their car.
… Meatballs, Salmon Platter and Pytt I Panna - The 310-seat restaurant features a variety of Swedish favorites from meatballs to ligonberries, and the introduction of a new vegetarian meal called, Pytt I Panna. Children can dine in a special area and feast on menu choices just for them including a hot dog and French fries or a mini Swedish meatball platter. For younger visitors, the restaurant offers organic baby food. Also, parents can warm up baby bottles or use full nursing facilities in the restrooms.
Since its founding in 1943, IKEA has offered a wide range of home furnishings and accessories of good design and function, at prices so low that the majority of the people can afford them. IKEA is recognized as a socially responsible company, and continuously supports initiatives that benefit causes such as children and the environment. Currently, IKEA has more than 175 stores in 31 countries, including 15 stores in the United States and nine stores in Canada. To visit the IKEA Web site, please go to http://www.ikea-usa.com.
Furniture World is the oldest, continuously published trade publication in the United States. It is published for the benefit of furniture retail executives. Print circulation of 20,000 is directed primarily to furniture retailers in the US and Canada. In 1970, the magazine established and endowed the Bernice Bienenstock Furniture Library (www.furniturelibrary.com) in High Point, NC, now a public foundation containing more than 5,000 books on furniture and design dating from 1620. For more information contact firstname.lastname@example.org.