One of the most exciting things to open in Manila is its first IKEA store. In the past, I would only get to visit this magical place when I travel abroad. The opening won’t be happening anytime soon, but I list down seven things you need to know about IKEA Philippines:
1. It will be the biggest IKEA in the world
The Philippine outpost of IKEA is set to be the biggest in the world. The size is 65,000 square meters and is the equivalent of 150 basketball courts. There will be five floors but only two will be used for shopping. The rest will be divided into parking, the warehouse, a call center, and the e-commerce facility.
2. It will open in 2020
IKEA will open in the Philippines in the SM Mall of Asia Complex, just across SMX. It will be accessible to the mall so you don’t have to go outside and cross. It’s already under construction so we’re on our way to the first IKEA store in the country!
A small team has already been in the Philippines for two years to study the market to see how they can be the best version of themselves when they open. They currently have eight people and are in an undisclosed office in Rockwell.
3. How to pronounce IKEA
Before we begin, I’d like to mention how IKEA is pronounced. Georg Platzer, the market development manager (and future IKEA store manager in Manila), says it doesn’t matter how you pronounce it as long as you come and visit. But if you’re iffy about it, it’s pronounced EEE-KEH-YAH not I-KEY-YA. IKEA stands for Ingvar Kamprad (the name of the founder), Elmtaryd (the farm he grew up in), Agunnaryd (his hometown in Sweden).
4. There will be 9,000 products available
There will be 9,000 products available in store! There will also be 55 room sets where you can get inspiration from. These are my favorites in the IKEA stores I visit abroad and it makes me want to redecorate my whole room. Now that I have my own house, it makes me want to redo the entire space!
All the items are rigorously researched and developed. It takes an item up to five years to reach the shop floor, and each one has to meet five key elements: form, function, quality, sustainability, and low price. Don’t worry, the prices will remain affordable!
One of my favorite trivia about IKEA is how they name their items. Each item has a name and you might think that’s it’s hard to name all 9,000 of them. But there’s a system to the process: bookcases are named after professions and boys’ names, while pillowcases are named after flowers and plants. Rugs are named after cities and towns in Sweden and Denmark, while outdoor furniture is named after Scandinavian islands. This method was developed by Kamprad himself, who struggled with dyslexia and remembering item codes.
5. Food will be there
Your favorite IKEA dishes will be present, like meatballs, hotdog sandwiches, and veggie balls. I’m looking forward to the meatballs the most!
6. There will be a play area for kids
If you’re bringing your family, you can take your kids to Småland, a play area that recreates the Swedish forest atmosphere. They’ll be supervised!
7. The website is up now
The website is live! You can’t shop online yet but you can check it out to learn more about the brand. It’ll get you excited when IKEA finally opens in the Philippines in 2020!