Take a look at Nottingham Ikea's new £1.2m restaurant at Giltbrook Retail Park

Tracey Brice, Tracy Chaplin, Debbie Goucher, and store manager Barbara Harrison in Ikea's new restaurant(Image: Nottingham Post)
Tracey Brice, Tracy Chaplin, Debbie Goucher, and store manager Barbara Harrison in Ikea's new restaurant(Image: Nottingham Post)

Ikea's new £1.2m restaurant at Giltbrook Retail Park - which has sweet potato fries and two private breastfeeding rooms is opening today.

For the last eight months a temporary eating area has been in operation - but because of limited space a restricted menu has been served.

The new booths at Ikea's restaurant(Image: Nottingham Post)

The new booths at Ikea's restaurant(Image: Nottingham Post)

But come 9.30am today Tuesday, October 23, morning, the hoardings will be down revealing the vast new space for scoffing Swedish meatballs, fish and chips, and cinnamon buns.

The previous restaurant has been extended, increasing seating from 370 to 500 with different zones decked out with the store's modern Scandinavian black, white and yellow furnishings.

For the first time, customers wanting coffee and cake can relax on cosy sofas or take a seat at one of the high wooden tables.

The family section has a play area, plenty of highchairs, and two private breastfeeding rooms with a comfortable armchair behind a curtain.

Prawn and egg open sandwich at Ikea(Image: Nottingham Post)

Prawn and egg open sandwich at Ikea(Image: Nottingham Post)

There's booths for groups and a charging station for laptops and phones - and in a nod to Ikea's heritage, long before its arrival in the UK, one of the walls is decked out with old catalogue covers dating back to 1951.

Marketing manager Chris Darling said: "Customers have been so patient. It's been the number one question in store - when is the restaurant opening?"

The restaurant will open with a new autumn/winter menu of comfort dishes of beef stew, chicken kiev and piri piri chicken with sweet potato fries.

Rest assured meatballs are still very much part of the deal. Choose from beef and pork or veggie/vegan ones - which come with mash, chips or a healthy superfood hash with courgette, sweet potato and kale.

So much space(Image: Nottingham Post)

So much space(Image: Nottingham Post)

Kids have their own smattingar (that's a menu for little folk) with salmon and cod fishcakes, tuna pasta bake, cod, meatballs or veggie lasagne.

Early morning shoppers will be able to tuck into breakfast and fill up on cereal, fruit salad or a full English before grabbing a trolley and hitting the showroom.

Food manager Tracy Chaplin said: "There is a lot of anticipation. We can serve the whole menu once again. In the temporary restaurant, we didn't have an extraction fan so we couldn't serve chips.

"There's more space for families with young children. Before it was difficult to get buggies round. This is much more user-friendly."

There's more privacy for breastfeeding at Ikea's new restaurant(Image: Nottingham Post)

There's more privacy for breastfeeding at Ikea's new restaurant(Image: Nottingham Post)

Nottingham Ikea has a new children's department as part of a £25m revamp - take a look at what's new

Staff are just as excited as customers about their new working environment.

"Back of house is much better and will help with efficiency. The guys are buzzing to get back in here," added Tracy, boasting that Nottingham is the first store in the UK to have a conveyor belt for dirty trays instead of the previous trolley racks.

The new restaurant is part of the store's £25 million revamp which has remodelled the showroom and improved staff facilities. The Market Hall will be the final part of the makeover.

Thank you Nottinghamshire Live