Toppen to open in 2019 at IKEA

Once again, I’m at IKEA Tebrau before shopping hours. I join media colleagues from Johor Baru and Kuala Lumpur to enter the building by the staff entrance and are ushered into the inner sanctum of the operations.

A teaser poster seen inside IKEA Tebrau
It’s always fun to have a peek into the back-of-the-house and catch a glimpse of what is going on here to ensure that everything is running smoothly on the retail shopfloor.

On entering this important zone, media passes are distributed and the words printed in capital letters, on its top right corner jump out at me: THE GREAT STORY UNFOLDS.

“Ah!” I exclaim privately. It will be my privilege and great pleasure to share the story as it unfolds. After all, I am the Johor Storyteller!

My media tag; Note what it says at Top Right corner!
So I pay close attention to the two gentlemen – CR and CO – as they share the exciting news about the soon-to-be-opened Toppen Shopping Center, Malaysia’s first Southern region shopping centre anchored by the first IKEA store outside of the Klang Valley.

The press conference is held in a large room with one wall of glass windows that overlook the adjacent site where the construction of the Toppen Shopping Centre is in progress.

Covering a space of 1.1 million square feet, Toppen Shopping Centre will comprise 4-levels of international and local retail shops, family-friendly facilities, multi-purpose areas, great entertainment, dining and sporting experiences for shopping, leisure and simply to pass the time.

Entry into the IKEA Tebrau office
IKEA Southeast Asia has over 15 years of experience in developing, owning and running successful IKEA stores and shopping centres that are anchored to IKEA stores in the region.

They include IPC Shopping Centre and MyTOWN Shopping Centre in Malaysia and Megabangna in Thailand.

The success in these projects has attracted a strong roster of new retail brands and long-term partnerships.

“Johor is home to 3.6 million potential consumers with fast-growing retail sales and Johor’s economy is booming – growing faster than the rest of the nation,” said Christian Rojkjaer or CR in short, Managing Director of IKEA Southeast Asia.

Facade of IKEA Tebrau and its opening times
“Our belief in co-creation allows us to partner with different segments of our business such as IKEA stores with our shopping centres, along with other tenants and the people in the surrounding community,” added CR.

Besides offering well-designed, functional home furnishing products at affordable prices from IKEA Tebrau, the adjacent Toppen Shopping Centre boasts of quality tenants that include renowned brands like TGV Cinema, Ben’s Grocers, Harvey Norman, Harvest and Season’s, just to name a few.

With a strong track record and international experience, IKEA Southeast Asia is confident that Toppen Shopping Centre will be the meeting place and heart and hub of the Johor community when it opens in the third quarter of 2019.

Press Conference with Christian
Rojkjaer [Right] and Christian
Olofsson [Left] of IKEA Southeast Asia
“So what does Toppen mean?” It comes from the Swedish word that means, awesome or fabulous.

It is also a combination of the word, top and open, which aptly describes the design of the shopping centre’s crown jewel at its rooftop.

The building’s unique rooftop will include a large multi-purpose piazza, community garden, play areas, sporting facilities, a cinema and alfresco dining areas catered to families and friends.

“Toppen is not just another shopping centre; it will be a space for the community to come together, a platform for business owners to grow and a positive driver for Johor’s economic growth through the creation of job opportunities and the increase of tourists into the country,” said Christian Olofsson, better known as CO, Shopping Centre & Mixed Use Director, IKEA Southeast Asia.

IKEA Southeast Asia has a firm commitment to grow its business in Southeast Asia with a store in Penang – currently under construction – and plans to open a third store in the Klang Valley.

IKEA Tebrau loading bays at the rear of the building
Besides West Malaysia, they are also looking at opportunities to open a store in East Malaysia as well as to open in the Philippines in 2020.

As I listen to the description of how the building design of Toppen Shopping Centre will integrate seamlessly with IKEA Tebrau with an overhead bridge link to AEON Tebrau City, I cannot help but feel an infectious thrill of excitement as I anticipate the comfort and convenience of the coming one-stop leisure and shopping destination!

By this time, I’m also eager to have a closer look at the building construction which is happening at the adjacent site.

Finally, we are invited to approach the windows to view the work-in-progress through the glass panels and are assured that later, we will go outside for a better view.

Construction on Toppen Shopping Centre is currently
in progress at the site adjacent to IKEA Tebrau
With Toppen Shopping Centre rapidly taking shape, this will present Johor and the region with a one-stop shopping and leisure hub for families and friends, the community and even tourists.

Later as I trek around the building to see the construction site, I can grasp how massive this development is and am glad that IKEA Tebrau is going to be much more than modern Scandinavian comfort and Swedish meatballs!

Now I’m just looking forward to the next update so that I may share the next exciting episode of the Toppen story as it gradually unfolds.

IKEA Southeast Asia is part of the Ikano Group of companies and the only IKEA franchisee in the world owned by the Kamprad family that founded IKEA.

No comments:

Post a Comment