(*Update Note - Since the time of this post, the opening date has been pushed back. Permits, world economic crisis, red tape, permissions, fine print stuff, commitments from other parties, all that. There have been numerous important projects that needed attention, especially the Zagreb Airport project needed to be agreed upon and finalized. See updated IKEA post HERE.
This addition may seem kind of mundane, another mall/shopping center opening in Croatia. (Especially from me, a non-mall type of person. Someone who goes in one to purchase what I came for, avoid the annoying foodcourts and yelling kids like the plague, and then get the hell out) Besides, there have been quite a number of them opening all across Croatia in recent years. But this one is different. This "Zagreb East Center" will top the list as the largest shopping complex in Croatia, but unlike the others, this one will have an Ikea. Ikea in Croatia! Finally! The first IKEA in the region. This is much more interesting than some 3rd rate North American "musicians" coming to hold a concert.
Maybe not a big deal for those of us who are able to shop at an Ikea, but this is a first for Croatia that gets 2 thumbs up from me. I'm a huge fan of IKEA and probably half of my furniture, kitchenwares, and other bric-a-brac are from there. When I was in Croatia last time, I totally enjoyed strolling through the downtown center part of the city, with all the cool shops, boutiques, cafes and pubs (Gostionice) and prefer that much more to being a mall rat. But IKEA is different. It's always an enjoyable experience shopping there. Plenty of stock, very reasonable prices, modern European accoutrements and atmosphere, the very cool creative looking furniture and lots of other chic items. One mustn't forget the food available at the IKEA grocery store, and of course the restaurant. An added bonus if you have children is, you can drop them off at the supervised play area, while you shop or browse through the store. Croatian timber company Tvin from Virovitica has been producing chairs and office furniture for Ikea the last 30 years.
Until now, Croatians wanting to shop at IKEA had to hop over the border into Hungary, Austria or Italy to make their purchases. But not anymore. This was on the planning table for the last couple of years, but final decisions about where exactly to build it kept pushing the construction date back. There are another 2 Ikea's being planned for Rijeka and Split in the near future as well. More information can be found, as well as multi-media at www.iicg.hr and www.croatia-sweden.com
Set to open in 2012, Zagreb East will be the largest shopping centre in Croatia (GLA: 140.000).
With the first IKEA store in Croatia as its anchor, it will feature the strongest and most diverse tenant line-up in Croatia.
The center's more than 320 stores will include a hypermarket, leading fashion brands, household appliances and home furnishings, books and music, home electronics, a sport superstore, family entertainment and an extensive dining area.
The centers unique design is based on a nature theme and will create new standards in Croatia. An approximately 2,000 m2 atrium will serve as the main entrance to the shopping centre and to the IKEA store, which is fully integrated into the centre.
The whole family will find Zagreb East a convenient, relaxing and exciting place to be.
For further information:
Inter IKEA Centre Hrvatska d.o.o. za nekretnine
Radnicka cesta 1a
Phone: +385 1 6053 500
Fax: +385 1 6053 501
A closer look at the soon to be "Zagreb East Center" + Ikea.