January 12, 2013

Furniture shops in Munich


One of my New Year’s resolutions for 2013 is to finally get started with my list of TODO’s at home and that includes: small renovations; search for new home decor accessories; buy new pieces of furniture and dispose the very old and broke ones.


TODO's: buy more green for the house
To get started with my list I have done a research and so below you will find a list of key furniture shops and home décor stores in Munich. But before that...

...Let’s start for the beginning: before you buy new pieces of furniture, you need to know where and how to dispose your old stuff. Please do not throw anything in your building containers that is not supposed to be disposed there (read “Recycling is a Sport” in Germany to get more information on how to recycle in Germany).

My experience: At the end of my first Christmas in Munich I wanted to dispose my half-meter Christmas tree and since it was already mid January, the time to take my tree out on the street for the city cleaning services to collect it was far gone.

Garbage containers

Then I decided that my tree was a living thing and therefore organic materia and so (applying German logic) I disposed it in the organic garbage container of my building. 

What happened? It took less than three seconds before I got the “Hausmeister” to come out of this office scolding me in a very loud, angry and fast German! At that time my German was intermediate, so I did not get much of it (plus he was barking in Bavarian) but for me it was like he was yelling: “burn her!”, “to the bonfire with her!”.

The key message is: please follow the rules when it comes to garbage in Germany!  In order to dispose your old pieces of junk (i.e.furniture or home appliances) you have two options in Munich:
  • You can take the old stuff yourself in your car to the designated facilities in Munich,
  • Or you can ask the AWM service to pick them at your place (at a price of course... check the AWM site to learn about the fees)
For more details go to the Munich waste city service (AWM), where you can find all the information regarding where and how you are allowed to dispose what and when and @ what price. The site is multilingual for the most important information.

In any case what you are looking for in German is called “Sperrmüll” (bulky waste) and this cannot be disposed at your home containers. An ironing table, a frying pan, a toaster or an old TV station are considered “Sperrmüll” and so must be disposed at the AWM facilities, never in your home containers!.

Now, once you have disposed your old and broken stuff, it is time to buy new ones and then: where can you go? Here you will find a list of furniture shops in Munich:

INTERNATIONAL CHAINS:

Ikea has two locations in Munich (Eching and in Brunnthal) but you need a car for both places or as I do: shop online;
Screen shot of Ikea German site
• BoConcept has two stores in the city center in Munich (one is two minutes away from Stachus in Sonnenstraße  and the second one is two minutes by foot from Gärtner Platz in Buttermelcherstraße);


BoConcept store near Gärtner Platz
• Butlers  is a very popular home decor shop in Munich that has been around for a while and has franchises outside Germany (Spain, Dubai, Eastern Europe). Their secret: very  (very) affordable home decor accessories and textiles (and sometimes small pieces of furniture, cook books) with style. They have many shops in the city, one that has very traffic is in Talstraße 30;


Butlers in Munich Fünf Höfe shopping passage
• In this line, Zara Home opened its doors in Munich at the end of 2012. It is an experience of taste and style to enter into this shop. Prices are middle-range and what they offer cannot be found anywhere else in the city. I love their textiles, dinner services, decoration pieces and the kid's room section on the first floor. Where? two minutes away from Marienplatz in Fürstenfelder Straße 13. 

Depot should also be mentioned here. They specialise in home decor, textiles and decorations. They are a bit more expensive than Butlers but their range is worth it. Classy and surprising. In summer (as in Butlers) you can find some outdoor chairs and tables. 

• Bauhaus is mainly a DIY/gardening store but they also sell pieces of furniture, home textiles and accessories  It is originally from Switzerland but has a good footprint in Germany. The shop in Munich is close the Hirschgarten.

• Hornbach is similar to Bauhaus, but this time " born in Germany" and more specialised in DIY/gardening, which means: less finished pieces and more DIY, but they also have a nice range of home textiles and accessories that is worth a visit. In Munich they are in Fröttmaning (Muthmannstraße 4)

THE MAIN SHOPPING STORES:
•          GaleriaKaufhof (Marienplatz or Stachus) and Karstadt (Stachus) also have a section for home décor, accessories and furniture. In my opinion: the range is limited and expensive.
•          Kaufring in Ostbahnhof is also worth a visit. Affordable and simpler than the other shopping stores, they usually have great deals in bed clothing and other home appliances and accessories. 

THE MUNICH MUSTS:
•          Kare was funded in the 80’s in Munich. Its range and style have worked so well that today they have 55 stores in 37 countries. I love this shop: their pieces have personality and although it might seem kitsch at a first sight, their quality and originality are the main reason why they are so popular. Check the website for locations, but if you are in the city center, pop in and check their shop in Sendlingerstr. 37 (one minute from Sendlinger Tor);
•          Kokon started in 1987 selling home textiles from India and then they expanded and included colonial furniture. I love the store in Lenbach-Palais in Munich but they also have other locations and an outlet in an industrial area in Brunhamstraße, 21.
•          Who’sPerfect? has been a reference in selling Italian design furniture since the late 90’s when they opened doors in Munich. Today they also have shops in other German cities (Stuttgart, Koln, Dusseldorf, Hamburg and Berlin). In Munich, the store is located near Laimer Platz in Landsberger Straße 350.
•          Segmüller (in Friedberg or in Parsdorf). The name must ring a bell since the Munich trams are branded with their advertising everywhere in the city. The shop is very popular thanks to its wide range and low prices. They have been in business since 1925 and they have expanded since across Germany.
•          XXX Lutz is not a Bavarian chain but has quite a success here and so I include them in this category. The first XXL shop was opened in 1945 in Austria and has expanded since across Germany. I love this store because of their practicality and simplicity. I go there for a solution and I always find one: no matter what it is (a main entrance rug, bath accessories, a lamp, a chair, a photo frame or bed sheets). They have several locations in Bayern but in Munich the closest one is in Theresienhöhe 5, facing where the Oktoberfest take place every year.
•          BÖEHMLER is a classic in Munich. After four generations, Böehmler is still a family business but with a taste of the best design houses in the city. Located in the Tal Straße passage, they do not only sell furniture but a lifestyle. Prices are high but their stuff is inspiring, the quality is incomparable and despite the service (not very friendly) they are worth a visit.

Böehmler in Tal Straße

OTHERS:
•          Höffner started in Berlin as a family business, they have now stores in the main cities in Germany including Munich in Freiham in Ludwig-Koch Straße 3. Their motto: “Wo Wohnen wenig kostet!” which is brief means: very affordable prices. 
•          Röller in Eching or Ingoldstadt has more the 100 subsidiaries in Germany. Again: price is key for them.

Also I have found the following shops in expats’ forums. I have no idea how good/bad they are, but I believe it is important to include them in this list for exploration purposes:
•          YellowMöbel
•          Möbelum
•          Sit andsleep

THE MUNICH GUIDE OF FURNITURE AND STYLE:
The publishing house 089Verlag publishes a very useful mini guide called  “Design Guide, München & Umland” where you can find a comprehensive list of  shops in Munich for furniture, design, home décor, home accessories, home textiles and antiquities. The guide is free and you usually find it inside one of the listed stores. So when you go out for a walk and pass by a shop that sells anything related to the house, pop in and ask. 


The design guide by 089Verlag
Do you know of other furniture shops in Munich? 

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