There is a very nice Ikea not to far from my compound, it’s across from a popular “family-only” shopping mall and next to a mini “strip mall”. Those in the Eastern Provinces area will know where I’m talking about!
Anyway, anytime I bop by the little mini strip mall on a weekday morning I always make it a point to drag my son across the parking lot to the Ikea where we can enjoy a nice mid-morning snack of a fairly authentic and really yummy cappucino (1 refill allowed, only 5 riyals!) and a donut or pastry (3 riyals) for half the price of a coffee and a donut at one of the cafes in the strip mall! Seriously, not only that but Ive realized that I’m not the only one who thinks the place is awesome because on any weekday morning the Ikea cafe is full (like almost every table is taken) by Saudi and Expat women and their children sitting around socializing, drinking cup after cup of coffee, nibbling on halaal bacon or a donut, something like this. There is SOMETHING about the Ikea cafe which is very inviting, friendly and esp. female friendly that brings women over there like bees to honey! Sure the other cafe’s have patrons but I think that most people who know about the Ikea will just walk across the lot and go there instead of one of the strip mall cafes.
They also have INCREDIBLE cakes and mousses and sometimes when I leave the kidlet home with his dad on a weekday evening and go to that strip mall to shop a little, I make it a point to go over there and indulge in a Chocolate Mousse or something which I don’t *have* to share with anyone! (I see moms all over shaking their heads at this statement!).
I just wanted to share this little “slice of life” anecdote.