Everyone’s favorite Scandinavian retailer IKEA has announced its plans to dominate yet another industry: hotels. For the world’s largest furniture chain, whose design-on-a-budget style and DIY ethos have revolutionized the way people shop for homewares, a chain of budget hotels in Europe surely does seem like the next logical step.
If you’ve ever stepped foot inside an IKEA (or seen 500 Days of Summer) you’ll know that these massive stores are practically ready to operate as a hotel to begin with. After closing doors to shoppers for the evening, any IKEA could easily start checking in hotel guests into the dozens of impeccably designed and idyllic bedroom scenes. (Indeed, some Chinese branches are reportedly grappling with an epidemic of shoppers making themselves too comfortable.)
However, Harold Muller, senior executive at the property unit of Inter IKEA, the retail chain’s parent company, says there are no plans to furnish the hotels with IKEA furniture, Reuters reports.
What?! No Aspelund bed or Sultan Fjordgard mattress?
“It is not an IKEA hotel,” Muller told Reuters. “It’s a continuation of our normal investment activities in real estate.” However, Muller said, the hotels will operate under IKEA’s credo of “good quality at a reasonable price,” and will be designed by Nordic designers with a Scandinavian feel. “‘Budget designer hotels’ is today the fastest developing hotel segment.”
The first two hotels are planned to open in Germany in 2014, with future locations including Austria, Belgium, the Netherlands, Scandinavia, Britain, and Eastern European countries.
While the idea of not shelling out tons of cash for a hip hotel experience sounds like a great idea, the decision not to furnish the room with IKEA furniture seems like a missed opportunity. Here, we imagine a few of the room designs, ripped straight from the showrooms, that might have been available to IKEA hotel guests.