The Ikea City experience in Hamburg

The Swedish furniture store Ikea decided to penetrate city centers and implement outlets within cities. Ikea was so far only in the outskirts of major cities, only to be reached by car.

So on Day 2 after the opening, I decided to visit the very first one to open: Hamburg, Altona. And it’s actually different then all the Ikea stores I’ve visited so far!I have been to Ikea shops in Ireland, France, Germany, Iceland, USA, etc. and guess what? They all have the same layout, same structure. They feel identical no matter where you are on the planet. Great when you feel homesick. But Ikea City is exclusive! So here’s what differs:

  • Windows! That was a shocking feeling. You can actually see sunlight and the outside from within Ikea. Really strange.
  • You start with the ground floor. Remember your Ikea: Get in, take the lift/escalator and browse through the exhibition rooms. Here, you start with the ground floor.
  • The organisation is set like in a real house: kitchen/living-room stuff on the ground floor, bathroom/bedroom on the first floor. The rest is located on the second floor.
  • The warehouse – you know where the heavy stuff is located – is on the top floor (!) I was rather surprised they decided to put that so high but I then figured the parking lot is also on the top floor. Shorter way to your car.
  • The journey through the store is much less confusing. They are many shortcuts and ways to go to the area you need.

Ikea

That’s just about it for my first impression. To be fair, I only stayed 30 minutes as I was in a hurry and I could not explore the shop more thoroughly. I’ll have another go, it’s only 5 minutes away and I love it. I’ll share any new impressions in a next post.

Oh and if you’re curious about what your items’ names mean, you can consult bab.la’s Swedish-English dictionary.

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About John Barré

English & German into French translator. Interested in languages, literature, video games, localisation & translation - among many other topics.
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