Planet China

Shopping for love

Most people go to IKEA for a sofa or a lamp. But in Shanghai they’re also looking for a spouse, it seems.

The Shanghai Daily reports that the Swedish firm’s outlet in Xuhui district has opened a ‘matchmaking corner’ in its cafeteria for singles “in their forties to sixties”.

The newspaper says no one is quite sure why the store has become such a draw for singletons but management began to notice plenty of flirting going on over the flatpack furniture.

In fact, bosses were none too pleased, as the amorous behaviour was putting off other customers. The daters hogged seats, were noisy and left rubbish. “On dating days our canteen business went down 15%,” says one staff member. Hence the tactic of inviting flirters into a special corner instead. Congregating them around complimentary coffee leaves more space free for ordinary customers, bosses said.


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