Know about this? Rate It!
IKEA: Scandinavian Design Superstore
IKEA isn't so much a store as it is a way of life. Inexpensive home furnishings for the masses, displayed in clean, well-lit and spartan surroundings - a formula that has worked around the world. The Chicago-area IKEA, in suburban Schaumburg, is the company's busiest outlet in North America, with reported sales last year of $160 million.
By some accounts, IKEA founder Ingvar Kamprad is among the world's wealthiest individual. (Forbes ranks him as #13, with a personal fortune estimated in the vicinity of $18 billion.) The company derives its name from the initials of his name, I & K, along with E for Elmtaryd (the farm he was born on) and A for Agunnaryd (the village he grew up in).
Chicago's IKEA features three massive floors of well-designed products, everything from "Ektorp" Sofas to "Grunka" Kitchenware. (Sometimes I just like to read the labels to see the names of the product lines.)
There's some interesting sociology behind IKEA's success in the USA. In some ways it's a Wal-mart for the aspirational classes.
TIP: Every IKEA has an in-store cafeteria - a good place to nosh while shopping. Swedish meatballs are always on the menu, along with other freshly prepared entrees, salads and desserts. The food is both surprisingly tasty and excellent value - and (as you might expect) the coffee that they serve is strong enough to give you a buzz that will last for hours.
Crate & Barrel: For the home & more ...
This is the Crate & Barrel "flagship" store, combining both housewares and furniture. C&B is very popular with young Chicago [as well as around the country]. The design is fresh. The quality is good. And the prices are reasonable.
The picture is looking up the open atrium around the entrance/escalator area. The brightly colored material is indicative of the store's style.
What to buy: I've bought everything from a big pieces of furniture to a package of 6 candles here -- it's a great source of well-priced, but stylish tableware & household goods.
Their "basics" collection has some really attractively designed items for small prices.
What to pay: Anywhere for a couple of dollars to a couple thousand of dollars;)
Bloomingdale's Home Store: Historic shopping
This is the old Medinah Temple building in Chicago, which was recently turned into a Bloomingdale's home store. However, they preserved the outside of the building and much of the structure of the interior as well. It's definitely worth a look!
- Book now for big savings!
- Hotels.com Outstanding choice of hotels all over the world at fantastic prices.
- Save up to 50% on hotels.
- Hotwire.com Hotwire: Get a 4-star hotel for a 2-star price.
Chicago Travel Guide
Explore the World
- Waskaduwa Hotels
- Lago Albano
- Pedas Hotels
- Laguna Cajititlán Hotels
- Little Rock Hotels
- Netherlands Antilles