Sunday, December 21, 2014
Largest IKEA store: South Korea breaks Guinness World Records' record (VIDEO)
SEOUL, South Korea -- Iconic Swedish furniture retailer IKEA built its biggest store in the world to serve South Korea's shrinking households; the store opened in Gwangmyeong, less than an hour's drive or 14 minutes by train from central Seoul, with a sales space nearly as big as the Louvre museum at 59,000 square meters, setting the new world record for the largest IKEA store,
according to the World Record Academy: www.worldrecordacademy.com/.
Photo: The 131,550-square-meter store in Gwangmyeong, just outside Seoul, is said to be the world's largest IKEA store to date. A total of 8,600 items ranging from bookshelves to kitchen furniture, bathroom goods and children's toys will be sold, while its cafeteria will sell affordable Swedish and Korean foods. Sixty-five rooms ― measuring about 55 square meters ― will be filled with IKEA products to showcase how northern European furniture can harmonize with the Korean room structure. Photo: IKEA Korea (enlarge photo)
The Guinness World Records' record for the Largest crayfish party across multiple venues was set by IKEA's 18 stores across the UK and Ireland; they hosted a simultaneous crayfish party for 4,967 customers adorned with traditional decorations and attire.
Guinness World Records also recognized the world record for the most meatballs eaten in one minute; it is 29 and was achieved by Takeru Kobayashi (Japan) for Bikkuri Chojin 100 Special #3 (Fuji TV) in New York, New York, USA, on 8 March 2010. Kobayashi performed the feat at Fulton Street Landing in Brooklyn, New York, and consumed IKEA meatballs.
The previous record-holder at IKEA, known for its inexpensive, self-assembly products, was in Stockholm spanning 55,200 square meters.
IKEA will offer a new challenge to the country's legion of furniture makers, many of which are small. About 61 per cent of a total of 1,247 firms in 2012 employed less than 20 people, private think tank Hana Institute of Finance said.
Among the 8,600 items on sale, some were modified for local tastes.
The "super-single" bed, brought specifically for Korea, offers sleepers up to 40 centimeters more snooze width than a standard single bed.
Alongside its Swedish meatballs, the store's restaurant offers kimchi bibimbap, a rice bowl mixed with the spicy South Korean staple side dish, and Korean barbecue.
"We never planned the biggest store, we just planned a big store, because we believe we need one for a 23-million city (the Seoul metropolitan area)," said Patrick Schuerpf, IKEA Korea's Country Project Manager.
The world's five largest IKEA stores are:
1. 552,000 square feet in Stockholm, Sweden
2. 494,000 square feet in Shanghai, China
3. 470,000 square feet in Shenyang, China
4. 457,000 square feet in Tianjin, China
5. 450,000 square feet in Berlin, Germany.
IKEA has 345 stores in 42 countries. The company reported 27.9 billion euros ($34.7 billion) in sales last year.
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