At Ikea, Chinese shoppers make themselves at home

People escaping the heat by relaxing on a sofa in an Ikea store in Shanghai. Photo courtesy: AFP

Shanghai (AFP) -- When it's sweltering in Shanghai, do as the locals do and settle down for a nap at Ikea -- if you can find an open bed.

Chinese have a peculiar penchant for making themselves at home in the Swedish retailer's airconditioned showrooms, snoozing on beds, dozing on couches, and eating at dinner tables -- and the phenomenon is on full display as the sweltering summer sets in.

With the mercury pushing 37 C (98.6 F) and outside feeling distinctly muggy, people from all walks of life -- children with parents, couples, and the elderly -- can be seen lounging and even, somehow, catching a few Zs amid the crush of shoppers.

Apparently recognising the potential profit that comes from increased footfall, Ikea has long tolerated serving as a surrogate living room for Chinese consumers, many of whom live in tiny apartments and appear to revel in stretching out on a spacious sofa.

But an Ikea store in Shanghai last year imposed a "no food, no seating" rule in its popular cafeteria, which had reportedly become the chosen venue for many widowed or divorced elderly seeking a romantic match.

Ikea's Chinese couch potatoes are expected to remain out in force for the time being.

The Shanghai Meteorological Bureau issued a yellow heatwave signal this week, which warns of temperatures climbing past 35 degrees.


Hot air balloons

2018-11-20 9:04 pm

Art installation

2018-11-20 6:10 pm

Brick art

2018-11-18 7:23 pm

Light festival

2018-11-18 1:23 pm

Power station

2018-11-17 7:48 pm

Burned out

2018-11-16 11:29 pm

Colorful welcome

2018-11-16 5:05 pm

Longest

2018-11-14 12:19 pm

Copyright © 2018 MCIL Multimedia Sdn Bhd (515740-D).
All rights reserved. Contact us : [email protected]