Several thousand people were in line by the time IKEA opened its first store in Miami-Dade County — and its second largest store in the United States — at 9 a.m. on Wednesday, with free giveaways for the first visitors in line. More than 200 customers had camped out overnight, awaiting the Sweetwater store’s opening, said IKEA spokesman Joseph Roth.
“Everything went smoothly,” Roth said. Both Miami-Dade County and the city of Sweetwater declared Aug. 27 IKEA Day.
The 416,000 square-foot store in Sweetwater includes a 600-seat restaurant, the Swedish retailer’s biggest nationwide. When the doors opened, customers headed there for breakfast, Roth said.
The new store's freebies continue on Thursday. The first 39 adults to enter the store when it opens at 10 a.m. will receive a free queen-sized Sultan Hallen mattress. And the next 100 adults will receive free home delivery for their purchases.
The store, which features 10,000 exclusively designed items, is IKEA's second in South Florida. Its Sunrise store opened in 2007.