An IKEA Hotel Could Be Coming To New Haven, CT, & It Would Preserve An Iconic Building, Too
IKEA is not a place I visit when I'm bored or in need of something to do. When I go to an IKEA store, I'm a woman on a mission, but many of my friends plan IKEA trips to wander around the showrooms and eat cinnamon rolls. While I can't identify, I can appreciate that some people find the whole experience relaxing, which is why the news about a potential IKEA hotel in New Haven, Connecticut is a big deal. Not only would shoppers have a place to sleep if they wanted to make their IKEA trip a multi-day affair, but the conversion would also preserve a historic building. And even if you get stressed out by furniture shopping, you could visit a hotel for the IKEA experience without the crowds or lines. The New Haven Independent first reported the potential development in April, and though an IKEA spokesperson denied that the company had any plans for the building at present, the news was reportedly discussed at a recent meeting of the New Haven Development Commission. Bustle has reached out to IKEA for comment, and we'll update this story when we hear back.
When asked about the development, a spokesperson told the New Haven Independent that IKEA hasn't announced any plans for the building. You might be wondering why the furniture giant would pick New Haven — a city with roughly 130,000 residents — instead of a huge metropolitan area New York City or San Francisco. But the building IKEA is eyeing isn't currently in use and it is walking distance from its New Haven location. and it totally fits in with their aesthetic. I have to be honest — at first glance, I thought the Pirelli Building on Long Wharf was, uh, ugly, but I realized the severe design was intentional. It's a brutalist building, which is a style of architecture that is described as "the aesthetic use of basic building processes with no apparent concern for visual amenity." Built in 1969, it's been empty since the 1990s, and conservationists have been worried it'd be demolished.
If you're a fan of architecture and design, you probably understand why this building is widely loved, even though looks vaguely like an artsy DMV to me. Still, IKEA would likely spruce it up if their one other hotel is any indication. Ikea Hotell is located in Älmhult, Sweden, and if you love the store's showrooms, you'll be drooling over this place. It's essentially the equivalent of getting to spend the night inside of an IKEA store, and you can even pay to stay in a room with bunk beds. Of course, we can't get ahead of ourselves, especially since IKEA hasn't officially confirmed their potential plans for the New Haven building. But things look promising, especially because New Haven Economic Development Administrator Matthew Nemerson confirmed the possible development to the New Haven Independent. "This is good news. It is going to be preserved," he told the New Haven Independent, adding that the city needs more hotels.
If IKEA does use the building for a hotel, it isn't clear when it would actually open, but it'll definitely be hyped up. New Haven is only a few hours from both New York City and Philadelphia, so the proposed hotel would be an ideal spot for anyone who wants to relax while also visiting bigger cities. And it's not going to be as expensive as you'd probably expect. Rooms at Ikea Hotell in Sweden start at 495 SEK per person per night, which is roughly $56. As much as I'd love to decorate my entire home with upscale IKEA furniture, it isn't realistic for me financially. Until that day comes, I'll just cross my fingers that this hotel becomes a reality.