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IKEA Shinmisato, Saitama
Not really sure how to review an IKEA. They're all the same, aren't they? Well, with this review, at least you'll know that it's here, near to Shin-Misato Station (Musashino Line) in the suburban sprawl of this part of Saitama.
I've only been to this IKEA on weekends and holidays. Accordingly, it's been chaos every time. Chaos because of so many people. The shop isn't isolated, either; it's very close to a LaLaport, so attracts a lot of the customers from there, too.
If you're driving here, set your GPS or have a good map; it can be tricky to find. Once you get up close though, it's hard to miss (being massive and a loud blue). There's no shortage of parking, despite the number of shoppers. If you're coming from Shin-Misato Station, it's an easy walk. Just follow everyone else (takes 5-10 mins).
As I said earlier, I'm not sure how to distinguish this IKEA from others. I will say this though, it can be a bit of pain trying to get assistance when you're in the store. Tracking down members of staff sometimes takes time, as they are often busy dealing with others. Also, in the 'lobby' you have to be careful when handling big trollies, there's lots of people about, families with kids, couples holding hands ... so you need to be careful that you don't inadvertently mow someone down!
The cafeteria here is fun and has plenty of seating. The food section after you pass the main cashiers is a good place for expats to stock up on snacks and other food stuffs that might give them a taste of things back home.
Store Open: 10:00 - 21:00