It has (unbelievably!) already been almost two years since IKEA came to St. Louis. This was a BIG DEAL. Ever since we moved here over 16 years ago, rumors have circulated about a possible IKEA location, and in the end, they always turned out to be false. We almost didn’t believe it when the news finally came out that St. Louis was actually going to get an IKEA store! But in 2015 it opened, and there was much rejoicing. Even so, I didn’t actually make it there until I went with Chickadee earlier this summer.
We have driven by the store and seen it from the interstate lots of times, but that in no way prepared me for how massive the store is when you’re in the parking lot looking at it!
If the store colors aren’t reminiscent enough of the Swedish flag for you, there is an actual Swedish flag outside:
And once you walk in the door, you are warmly welcomed:
Did I mention how big the store is?!? The map was so intimidating, I almost turned around and left!
The store may be intimidating, but it is extremely well-planned and organized:
Did I mention it was intimidating? The self-serve furniture area puts big stores like Walmart and Lowe’s to shame!
The free lockers are an especially good idea:
And given how big the store is, I think having a planned rest area is really smart!
What I was really there for, however, was the food. I’ve heard about the cafeteria style restaurant and the Swedish meatballs, so I had to check it out. It was also extremely well-organized. In addition to the hot food line, there were also cold options, including some amazing looking desserts:
I especially loved the carts for people who might have multiple meal trays!
Chickadee and I had already eaten lunch, so we just got a side order of Swedish meatballs and a piece of Daim torte to share. We also tried the pear fruit water and the lingonberry drink. Everything was delicious (Chickadee LOVED the meatballs!), and it was SO CHEAP!!!
Here’s a look at the full Swedish meatball meal:
The store also has Swedish treats (to enjoy at home) for sale:
Once we had exhausted ourselves walking around the store, we were ready to head out, and we received a very friendly goodbye, as well!
While we were there, we bought some Swedish treats to bring home and share with everyone, so we got to have a full IKEA meal at home…Swedish meatballs with the amazing IKEA gravy, lingonberry drink, and Kakor Choklad:
I loved our visit to IKEA, and I can’t wait to go back with the whole family…it’s one of the few places I can think of where we can all have a nice walk, look at some interesting things, and enjoy a filling meal, all without breaking the bank…as long as we don’t decide to redecorate our entire house while we’re there!