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Red Hook Ikea Mania: Pop-Up Rooms, Cardboard Landmarks!

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You knew it was coming: The massive marketing blitz to promote Ikea's first New York City store will hit full-force beginning this Monday, June 9th. Per a press release, we learn that the Swedish furniture company will begin scattering twenty-foot pop-up IKEA room settings throughout the city. The temporary vignettes will be placed at "iconic sites" like Union Square (June 12th), Borough Hall plaza (June 9th), Brooklyn Public Library (June 13th) and Cadman Plaza (June 15th). But that's not all! The store is also getting architect John Hobbs to build huge sculptures of local landmarks like the Empire State building and the Brooklyn Bridge out of Ikea cardboard boxes; those will be unveiled outside of the store on Beard Street on opening day. Of course, "guerilla" media tactics are also mentioned in the release—hopefully, they will in some way involve meatballs and preserved fish.

Brooklyn, ny – IKEA, the world’s leading home furnishings retailer, today announced it is deploying a specifically-tailored advertising campaign to promote the June 18 grand opening of IKEA Brooklyn, the Swedish company’s first store and restaurant destination in New York City. Beginning June 9 and lasting through June 30, the unique approach conceived by Deutsch NY will reflect traits common between IKEA and New York: taste geared toward good design, focus on affordability, recognition of small-space living and an appreciation of multiple transit options.

“We wanted to mark our entrance into New York City with IKEA Brooklyn in a manner appropriate for this dynamic market,” said Mike Baker, store manager of the future IKEA Brooklyn. “IKEA Brooklyn’s location, which includes a park-like setting along the waterfront as well as views of lower Manhattan and the Statue of Liberty, has inspired us to tap New Yorkers’ love for parks and pride in their local landmarks for this campaign.”

New York City structures have been built with hundreds of IKEA-branded flat-pack boxes, while iconic locations will be sites of pop-up IKEA room settings and strategic communications.

Landmark Sculptures – IKEA creative partner, Deutsch NY, worked with artist and architect John Hobbs to create gigantic sculptures of NYC landmarks (some more than 96 feet long and 21 feet tall) out of more than 1,000 cardboard boxes which were then used in television, print and out-of-home executions. Many images/references will be teased prior to launch and “revealed” leading up to the store’s opening. For example, selected bus shelters will showcase ads depicting IKEA room settings, covered with a cardboard teaser featuring these “assembled” landmarks: Brooklyn Bridge, Brooklyn water towers, Empire State Building with Manhattan skyline, all of which beginning June 18 will be displayed on-site at IKEA Brooklyn.

Pop-up Room Settings – Deutsch worked with TH Outdoor to create four 20’ x 20’ pop-up room settings – or living room-sized boxes with complete interiors furnished with IKEA furniture such as sofas, tables and chair, and accessories such as lamps, rugs and prints. Inside, the public can experience IKEA products. Leading up to IKEA Brooklyn’s June 18 grand opening, these life-sized rooms can be found at Union Square in Manhattan (June 12) and in Brooklyn at Borough Hall plaza (June 9), the Brooklyn Public Library (June 13) and Cadman Plaza (June 15).

Additional Branded Elements – The campaign also will include radio, projection media, transit media (reflecting the many ways customers can visit IKEA Brooklyn), bus kings, pizza delivery boxes, phone kiosks, guerilla media, direct mail, and even wrapping IKEA shuttle buses and the New York Water Taxis transporting visitors to the IKEA store.

The 346,000-square-foot IKEA Brooklyn will be the fourth IKEA store in the New York-New Jersey area, 35th in the U.S., and is located on 22 acres along the Erie Basin waterfront in Red Hook, south of the BQE/Gowanus Expressway and southeast of the Brooklyn-Battery Tunnel. The store – with views of lower Manhattan and the Statue of Liberty – will employ more than 500 coworkers and will feature 10,000 exclusively-designed items, a 450-seat IKEA Restaurant, 6.5 acres of waterfront esplanade, a supervised children’s play area, and approximately 1,400 parking spaces. Other IKEA stores in the area are in: Elizabeth, NJ; Hicksville, NY; and Paramus, NJ.

There currently are more than 275 IKEA stores in 36 countries, including 34 in the U.S. Other new stores will open in: Charlotte, NC; Somerville, MA; and Tampa, FL. Since its 1943 founding in Sweden, IKEA has offered a wide range of home furnishings and accessories of good design and function, at low prices so the majority of the people can afford them. IKEA has been ranked in FORTUNE’s annual “100 Best Companies to Work For” list (three years in a row), Working Mother magazine’s annual list of “100 Best Companies for Working Mothers” (four years in a row) and Training magazine’s annual “Top 100” ranking of companies that excel at human capital development (five years in a row). IKEA incorporates environmentally friendly and socially responsible efforts into day-to-day business, and continually supports initiatives that benefit causes such as children and the environment. For more information about IKEA, please go to

· All Ikea Red Hook coverage [Racked]