It's so easy for a trip for Ikea to turn into an all-day event. First, there's the (usually epic) drive to your nearest store. Once the kids are dropped off at the creche, then it's a morning around the showrooms making notes and measuring up, before reconvening for meatballs and refillable cola – does anyone ever choose that lingonberry drink, by the way?
Next, it's time to grab a trolley and make a pilgrimage to the marketplace, where no doubt arguments about how many candles/picture frames/pot plants one house needs will ensue. Now you're at the warehouse, where a not-so-quick game of 'find the wardrobe' is followed by queueing at the cash desk. And you're not done yet. There's a quick pitstop for 50p ice cream and cheap-as-chips hotdogs, before you finally make it out. And just like the furniture you've just bought, you're probably not in one piece.
So no wonder we were excited to hear that Ikea is opening up a new town-centre store over a relatively modest 900 sq m...
There is a catch, however. The new Planning Studio is dedicated to customers wanting to order kitchens and bathrooms. It's good news if you have a makeover in mind, but not if you were just hoping to pick up a few wine glasses or a new set of tea towels. That said, there will also be a bit of bedroom inspo – with chests of drawers, side tables and beds on display that customers will be able to order for home delivery.
The artistic impression of the store (above) reminds us of a legendary Ikea instruction booklet. We wonder if the builders are using giant alum keys to construct it?!
Ikea's new store will open in Bromley on March 28th 2019, taking the place of Mothercare on Bromley High Street. It follows in the footsteps of the first Planning Centre, located on London's Tottenham Court Road (above), and it seems that more could be rolling out in the future.
'The opening of our new Planning Studio in Bromley will mark the next exciting step in our city centre approach as we bring IKEA to the heart of urban areas in London,' says Jane Bisset, IKEA London City Centre Market Leader.
'Following the successful launch of our first Planning Studio on Tottenham Court Road, we are looking forward to opening our doors to the people of Bromley. We'll be providing the expert advice you’d expect from IKEA, alongside a great service package and delivery offer.'
And Bromley isn't the only area set to benefit form a new Ikea this year. We've just been invited to preview the new Greenwich superstore, opening on February 7th. It's set to be its 'leading sustainable store'.
As well as Ikea favourites (the Marketplace, Bistro, etc), there will be a roof garden and space for creative workshops. 'We want to inspire and enable more people to live a better everyday life at home,' says Helen Aylett, IKEA Greenwich Store Manager. 'We look forward to inviting our customers and the local community to enjoy a unique IKEA experience that puts their needs and lifestyles first.'
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Amy Cutmore is an experienced interiors editor and writer, who has worked on titles including Ideal Home, Homes & Gardens, LivingEtc, Real Homes, GardeningEtc, Top Ten Reviews and Country Life. And she's a winner of the PPA's Digital Content Leader of the Year. A homes journalist for two decades, she has a strong background in technology and appliances, and has a small portfolio of rental properties, so can offer advice to renters and rentees, alike.
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