IKEA Dubai and Abu Dhabi
Ikea is a well-known Swedish furniture and home accessories store with outlets around the world, including the UAE and other Middle East countries. Ikea is well-known for good value furniture that is easy to transport and frustrating to assemble, but the popularity of the furniture is obvious, as anyone who has been stuck in an Ikea queue at Festival City on a Friday night knows.
The first Ikea store in Dubai was a small shop in Karama on Zabeel Road. A larger store opened in Deira City Center when the new mall opened in 1995, and an even larger store opened in Dubai Festival City when DFC opened in 2005. There is also a large Ikea store in Abu Dhabi on Yas Island, relocated from Abu Dhabi Marina Mall as of 15 March 2011.
IKEA Yas Island
- Yas Island IKEA opening date 15 March 2011. Store area 33,000 sq meters (3x larger than the Abu Dhabi Marina Mall store), sales area 19,150 sq meters, 1,450 car parks, 35 cash tills, restaurant area 2,000 sq m,
Smaland play area for children. Opening hours 1000-2200 Sunday-Saturday, restaurant closes 2130 (15 March 2011 press release).
- Yas Island IKEA opening date expected to be before February 2011. Mile Franicevic, Al Futtaim retail group director was reported in the Gulf News 04 February 2010 as saying "The Yas Island store is expected to be up and running 12 months from now. We will be investing Dh26 million in stocking the store and Dh30 million towards internal furnishings,"
- Yas Island IKEA groundbreaking announced in 03 February 2010 press release.
- Total floor area 32,000 square meters (or 33,000 sq m according to advertisements announcing opening on 15 March 2011), sales floor area 19,150 square meters,
restaurant area 2,100 sq m with seating capacity of 550, parking for 1,500 cars, total 270 staff employed, 1.3 million visitors expected in the first 12 months (figures from press release 03 February 2010).
- Yas Island IKEA under development as part of the Yas Mall. The Yas Mall Ikea was announced in a press release 16 September 2009 with no useful information such as where, when, or how big. Just that Aldar Properties (the Yas Island developer) had signed an agreement with Al Futtaim (the IKEA franchise holders in the UAE), and that the new Yas Island Ikea would be the biggest in the Middle East.
IKEA bus service Abu Dhabi
- IKEA will operate a free shuttle bus service for IKEA customers between Abu Dhabi Marina Mall and the new Yas Island IKEA showroom from 15 March 2011 for about one month.
- Operating times during IKEA opening hours, bus service frequency hourly, travel time about 30 minutes.
- Bus service might be extended after mid-April 2011 depending on popularity.
IKEA opening hours
|Dubai Festival City
|Abu Dhabi Yas Island
|Abu Dhabi Marina Mall
- IKEA restaurants open at 0930 and close 30 minutes before store closing time.
- IKEA Yas Island opening hours 10 am to 10 pm daily (according to IKEA UAE website 15 March 2011).
- IKEA Abu Dhabi Marina Mall closed and relocated to Yas Island from 15 March 2011.
What's so special about Ikea furniture?
For those who don't know, Ikea sells most furniture disassembled. Which means shelves, tables, chairs, desks, etc can be packed flatter and they'll fit into your Volvo stationwagon with ease (then again, a Swedish Chef and his complete kitchen would probably fit into a Volvo stationwagon). When when you get home, you unwrap your goodies, look for the assembly instructions which usually have a couple of diagrams of how to turn the special key provided and what the assembled item looks like, find a plastic bag with one less bolt than the number required, scratch your head for a while, and eventually find the maintenance guy and give him 50 dhs to put the blasted thing together. Or if you're Swedish and female, there is bound to be a copious supply of willing DIY male carpenters at any of the Dubai watering holes desperate to show off how clever they are. At least you save yourself 50 dhs that way since they'll be embarrassed enough when they fail to put the furniture together, that they'll pay the maintenance guy themselves.
The Ikea product line includes both home and office furniture, bathroom fixtures, beds and bedding, kitchen accessories from napkins to complete kitchens (minus the whiteware though), children's furniture, shelves and cupboards, pictures and picture frames, plastic plants, and wicker baskets to put everything in. Pretty well almost everything non-electrical that you need make your home a sweeter home.
A 10,000 dirham shopping spree at Ikea should be enough to kit out a 1 bedroom apartment with bed, sofa, table, chairs, desk, and most of the other bits and pieces needed. Take AED 15,000 if you're feeling generous, leave out the sofa and desk if you want to spend just 5,000 dirhams. Double or triple the amount for 2 or 3 bedrooms.
IKEA shopping and furniture assembly tips
- Write down on a notepad the important distances in your home where furniture is likely to be placed. Don't forget to bring the notepad and a pen/pencil with you when you go shopping. Ikea have bits of paper and pencils available if you do forget, but not the measurements of your home.
- Bring a proper builder's measuring tape with you (the steel tape that is spring wound into a holder), especially if you're shopping on your own. It's much easier to measure furniture with than the paper ones supplied by Ikea at their stores.
- Check carefully that you have all the nuts and bolts, before you leave the store. Ikea don't usually supply spares and if you don't check, that's bound to be the time you find you're missing a screw.
- Don't assume everything you need for furniture assembly is in the box. You will probably at least need a screwdriver (and later during assembly you might want to take a hammer to the half completed construction).
- Buy or borrow an electric screwdriver, especially if you're getting a job lot of furniture for your new home.
- Authentic Swedish meatballs and other goodies at quite reasonable prices. Busy though.
- 0930-1130 daily (in Dubai only). Get eggs, sausage, hash browns, mushrooms/baked
beans for 4 or 5 dhs. Not during Ramadan.
- Mile Franicevic - General Manager for IKEA in Egypt, Qatar, UAE.
IKEA contact details
- Tel toll-free in UAE 800-4532 (800-IKEA)
- Tel Dubai Festival City +971-4-20375555, fax +971-4-2037620, email firstname.lastname@example.org
- Tel Abu Dhabi Marina Mall +971-2-6812228, email email@example.com
- Tel Abu Dhabi Yas Island +971-2-4935888, fax +971-2-4935830, email firstname.lastname@example.org
Jobs at IKEA UAE
- Visit Al Futtaim careers website at www.afuturewithus.com.
These stores have similar quality (although Ikea is likely to be the most robust choice), style, prices, and will garner equally disapproving looks from any snob friends you might have.
- Homes R Us Dubai
- The Home Center
- Pan Emirates Furniture - cheaper than the others
- Home Living Design, or Living Home Design, or something - in the basement of the Dubai Mall. Has equally strange names for their desks, chairs, cutlery, pots, pans, and kitchen sinks - like Fnark, Plork, Snakkle, Plop.