IKEA Festival: Representing and engaging Jordan through videos, activities

Bedroom challenge contestant Rand Naeem accompanied her mom. (Photo: Haya Najdawi/Jordan News) Caption 2:
AMMAN — The Swedish home furnishing franchise IKEA hosted their IKEA Festival under the umbrella of the ‘better life at home’ movement that they launched. اضافة اعلان

The festival is set up to be a global virtual home tour that allows customers to enjoy and browse products in real-time from the comfort of their homes. It also serves to substitute using a catalog to show the products and instead share practical examples of how the products are being used, allowing customers to find inspirations for their home decor.

“During the pandemic, a lot of people created their own spaces for different activities inside their homes; for example, people who are into fitness and exercising have home gyms, some people have home theatres, musicians have a setup so they can play music online and so on,” said IKEA’s Marketing manager Jehan Aqqad in an interview with Jordan News.

“We filmed videos from around the world from inside of people’s homes. That is the main idea behind the virtual home tour. I was so people can share their stories and experiences and maybe talk about new skills they learned during the lockdown, like, for example, cooking,” said Aqqad.

16-year-old Lour Kabajah, the last one up from the couch challenge, she's the youngest contestant. (Photo: Haya Najdawi/Jordan News)

Locally, IKEA recorded four videos from across Jordan which are set to be posted on their websites and posted within the next week. Teasers for all four videos are already posted all over IKEA’s website and social media accounts.

The first video is under the category home visits.  Aqqad shared that: “This video shows diversity; different generations, people with different cultures, environments, and backgrounds. We showed how they killed boredom inside of their houses and what they do in their free time.”

“The second video is kitchen talks, it features two people (an old man who owns a supermarket in his sixties and a young drummer who is in his twenties), the video showed the difference between them as the old man has his own home and cares about having furniture while the young drummer moves around and travels a lot, lives in a rented apartment with no furniture but his bedroom,” explained Aqqad.

The third video is shopping with celebrities, Aqqad revealed. “We filmed the influencer Naji Elqaq and his wife Lama Maaitah furnishing a living room with a budget. The idea is to see their different styles.”

The fourth and last video is a home makeover video, where they did a makeover to an apartment; they worked with small spaces to make them fit as much furniture as possible to make the rooms more convenient.

“Here in IKEA Jordan, we did something extra, which was to open up the store for 24 hours on Thursday with special offers after 10 pm, we also hosted a barbeque night on our rooftop, did many activities, and competitions as well,” Aqqad told Jordan News.

Competitions held included whoever eats the most hotdogs wins a free meal for 48 days, last to get up from the couch wins a couch, and finally an assembling competition which had a lot of people participating.

On Thursday, one of the most popular competitions was the last person out of bed wins a JD1000  bedroom, with ten people competing for the prize.

 Adnan another competitor competing in the bedroom challenge. (Photo: Haya Najdawi/Jordan News)

“We announced the registration for the competition on Facebook two days before the festival started, the contestants called on the spot, and we had it fully booked within the hour, we also had a huge waiting list in case anyone failed to show up, people from the list can participate,” said Aqqad.

Two hours into the competition, a contestant was already sound asleep while another one gave up and quit the challenge, 37-year-old Issa Manasra was one of the last contestants still competing, “It is like a getaway, like a short vacation away from my family and my kids, I’ll probably be catching up on work during the time I am here” he commented.

Another contestant, 24-year-old Rand Naeem, was nervous even though her mother and sister were there to cheer her up; she shared: “It is a new experience. I brought snacks with me, and most importantly, power banks!”

Heba Al-Sheikh Yaseen, another young contestant who was planning to spend her time watching movies, series, and Netflix shows, shared: “I brought my iPad with me, and I am all set to binge-watch shows to pass the time, my brother brought me snacks too” she commented.

The event is set to continue until November 2, “Every week there will be a different theme, kitchen week is this week, all activities and discounts revolve are around the kitchen,” said Aqqad.

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