A roof terrace with trees, glass lifts and a transparent facade: the inner-city Ikea branch is clearly different from the big megastores on the outskirts. “We want to get closer to the customer,” said Alpaslan Deliloglu, Country Manager at Ikea Austria, outlining the concept. Thanks to a hotel as a sub-tenant and the terrace, which is also freely accessible outside of opening hours, the house should also attract non-customers.
More than a million customers expected
The urban shopping experience itself should not differ significantly from the usual process, as was emphasized today. The entire range is available, but only the smaller parts can be taken away. The rest of the offer will be delivered within 24 hours. On request, the purchase can also be made available at pick-up stations.
Deliloglu said they want to receive more than a million customers a year on outer Mariahilfer Strasse. Work in the building, in which around 140 million euros will be invested, continues despite the challenges of the pandemic, as project manager Sandra Sindler-Larsson reported. A corresponding safety concept has been drawn up for the people working on the construction site.
Facade ready in March
The facade should be closed by March next year. How it currently looks inside was shown today at least by means of a virtual tour. The scenery, however, differs little from other construction sites, and nothing of the interior design can be seen yet. However, the French hotel chain, which will rent two of the seven floors, gave a first glimpse of the rooms – which were set up elsewhere for test purposes.
The partner is the “Jo & Joe” brand belonging to the Accor Group. 345 beds are to be available in Vienna – the first branch outside France. You only partially rely on classic rooms. The hostel system with shared bedrooms is also used. The prices there start at 25 euros, and around 80 euros are due for overnight stays in a private room, explained company representative Francois Leclerc.
In general, business for Ikea is going well in this country, affirmed Austria boss Deliloglu. The group had recently announced that the revenue losses caused by the first lockdown could more than be made up. Now they are betting on the Christmas business. “The expectations are high here,” says Deliloglu. The fact that your own four walls are more important this year than ever before could be helpful – because this year you can only spend the festival at home.