Hundreds of singles go to unauthorized matchmaking events in the store’s cafe to chat over complimentary coffee.
In the Xuhui district of Shanghai, China, singles gather in the cafeteria of IKEA twice a week to chat and drink the free coffee that’s available. These unauthorized matchmaking events, attended mainly by 45-65 year olds, have become a great place to meet for those divorced or widowed. Hundreds of people regularly crowd into the cafe to mingle and look for that special someone.
The Swedish home furnishing store isn’t happy with this lonely hearts club though, as the groups of seniors occupy nearly all of the seats in the cafe, leaving no room for their customers, and they take advantage of the complimentary coffee. They have put up a customer notice saying that the behavior of these people is affecting the normal operations of the cafe. The single seniors apparently quarrel and fight, are noisy and messy, and they damage the image of both Shanghai citizens and IKEA. They are trying to find out who organizes these matchmaking events so they can put a stop to them.