Would You Check Into the Hotel Ikea?
No, You Don't Have to Assemble Your Own Bed
Ikea, the Swedish home furnishing company that loves to provide the world with cheap, but stylish beds, bathrooms and bookcases, now wants to furnish the places where people lay their heads when they're away from home, too.
The company is reportedly planning to launch a line of budget hotels throughout Europe, 100 properties that would incorporate the Ikea design aesthetic, and charge Ikea-like prices for a stylish night's stay.
An executive tells The Financial Times (via CNN.com) that Ikea will not actually operate the hotels, but will instead hire an established hotel operator to do it.
The hotels also won't really be called Hotel Ikea, sadly … seems like a missed branding opportunity to us.
"We will announce within a few weeks the first location for our budget hotel in Germany and we are in talks with hotel operators to rapidly implement our concept," a senior manager in Ikea's property division, said.
"Budget design hotels," like the ones Ikea is planning, are a hot seller in the hotel industry, The Financial Times reports.
And Ikea is also considering building a series of student residences throughout Europe, which, along with the budget hotels, the company sees as a long-term investment that will provide a good return.
Ikea, which was last week valued at more than $10 billion, is also developing a large property called Strand East, near Olympic Park in east London. The development will have more than 1,000 homes and 500,000 square feet of commercial space.
In other words, it's Ikea's world, and we're all just living in it, with those maddening little hex wrenches in hand.