The former Toys “R” Us site in Tallahassee may be the new home of a national furniture retailer whose tag line is “Make it simple. Make it your home.”
Early permit documents indicate Scandinavian Designs plans to renovate the 5-acre parcel at 1625 Apalachee Parkway and, pending permit approval, it may be the company’s first furniture showroom site in Florida and the southeast.
The contemporary home furniture retailer plans to complete “interior renovation and exterior paint of a 40,068 square-foot empty former Toys “R” Us to a new furniture store.”
Aside from Tallahassee, the company has sought out other former Toys “R” Us locations across the country for its showroom sites. It’s retrofitted commercial space from the legacy retailer in cities like Cranberry, Pennsylvania and San Rafael, California.
At the time, Scandinavian Designs had 45 stores in 13 states that “largely have come about thanks to 10 former Toys “R” Us stores,” according to a June 2021 article in the North Bay Business Journal.
The family-owned company acquired leases and deeds after the legacy toy retailer filed for bankruptcy in 2017, according to Cody Eide, who with his brother, Kristan, is part of the second generation of the firm’s leadership.
“It has allowed us to expand,” Eide said, in the article.
First launched in 1963, Scandinavian Designs is headquartered in Boise, Idaho, and was founded by Norwegian immigrant Erling Eide, who opened a furniture design show in Stavanger, Norway, according to the company’s website.
“He purchased a single container of Scandinavian furniture, and the sellers agreed to give him modest credit on a handshake,” the site said. “‘That’s how business was done over there in those days,’ he recalls. Shortly after Mr. Eide attended the furniture show in 1963, he opened a small Scandinavian Designs showroom in the well-populated business district of San Rafael, California.”
It goes on to say the company grew from “a single showroom on the West Coast selling Scandinavian furniture to a national brand with 40+ showrooms full of furniture from across the globe.”
Contact Reporter TaMaryn Waters at [email protected]. Follow @TaMarynWaters on X.