The ultimate catch-22 of every city-dweller, even in Paris, has to be decorating their apartment. Visions of a chic Sex and the City setting are quickly humbled by the treacherous task, leaving one easy solution to our space-starved woes: IKEA.
Unless you happen to be an urbanite with a vehicle, an IKEA run is time commitment. The planning, measuring, scrolling through countless pages of unpronounceable storage solutions… They all lead up to the big day. The day you take public transport to a crowded warehouse outside of the city, and take a costly cab to get your affordable finds back home. But things are looking up for us budget-conscious Parisians, because IKEA has finally opened a store right in the heart of the city, changing the game for many Parisians who’ll never have to schlep far out of the city again.
Paris’ Ikea, located close to the Madeleine, is their first French inner-city store, with others in the pipeline for Lyon and Nice. It’s a whopping 5,400m2/54,000 sq ft – in other words, it should be big enough to satisfy all your Pinterest-founded dreams.
So, after a few recent visits, what is my verdict?
The handy location means it’s easy to pop in and grab an item or two or to do a full shop after work, without having to devote a whole day to it. The entire store is focused on city living with lots of the space-saving solutions IKEA first broke the mold with way back in the 80s. And, it’s a dream come true for Parisians who often have to make-do with living in pocket-sized apartments.
On the downside, the store’s limited range of goods means that you shouldn’t expect to find everything you need here, and you’d think they’d have unlimited stock of smaller items ranging from pillows or even their famed Swedish meatballs, but alas, they were out of much of what I needed during recent visits. And that meant I was doomed for a trip outside the city to buy the rest of what I needed for my new apartment.
It’s filled with dread that I stepped inside the Roissy location on a Saturday afternoon, as I looked out for crowds and long queues. However, I was pleasantly surprised at seeing that the mammoth store was rather quiet, leading me to wonder if the Paris location has absorbed some of the normal weekend traffic.
I now have the bulk of what I need to make a cozy home for myself in my new Parisian apartment, and knowing I have the option to pick up any last bits in the Paris Ikea, needless to say, I won’t be returning to an IKEA warehouse any time soon. And if you want to avoid IKEA altogether and still have a chic Parisian apartment decorated for a reasonable price, check out the list of some of our favorite spots for design inspiration, coming soon!
IKEA Paris La Madeleine – 23 Boulevard de la Madeleine, 75001 Paris
All images by Diana Liu. Looking to travel? Check out Haven In for a fabulous vacation, or long term, rental in Paris, Italy, France or elsewhere in Europe.