The secret to happiness. Did the IKEA happiness hunters find the answer?

IKEA happiness hunters spent two weeks in Denmark looking for
the hygge that seems so elusive to the rest of the world.

Danes seem to know, considering their consistent spot in the top
5 of the world’s happiest nations.

IKEA Denmark wanted to uncover where
the Danes’ happiness originates from, and whether it is related
to the way the Danes live and interact with each other. 

So, what better way to find out than sending out a happiness
hunter to sniff out clues as to why the Danes are so dang

To select the intrepid pursuer of happiness, last summer, IKEA
Denmark ran a global
for someone who will fit the role of a happiness hunter
for IKEA.

2,300 people from all over the world applied for it.

There were so many qualified applications that two winners were
chosen instead of one – Yaya Ching from Hong Kong and Roy Torres
from the USA.

For two weeks, they lived in an apartment in Copenhagen and
studied the Danish culture by visiting the homes of different Danes
– from students and mothers to a zero-waste blogger.

In addition, they get a token Danish salary and free meatballs
at the IKEA restaurant. I don’t know about them, but that’s
enough to make me happy.

And now, we have the exciting part. The results! Their findings
are showcased in a six part
Watch Episode 1 below.

I binge watched all of them and liked Episode 3 the most. (Cute

Happiness hunter on the loose

“We know that Danes have a strong emotional connection to
their homes which they perceive as a safe space for wellness and
hygge’. In our large “Life at
Home” study in 2017 we asked more than 20,000 people from 22
different countries about their feelings for their home, and 9 out
of 10 Danes said that they feel peace and happiness when they think
about their homes. That lead us to think whether happiness in
reality arises from the Danes’ authentic life at home” Anne
Krogh, Country Marketing Communication Manager at IKEA Denmark,

And that’s the little secret IKEA Denmark hopes to uncover
through happiness hunter Yaya and Roy.

Home is where happiness is

Yaya is a 29-year-old teacher from Hong Kong. During her time in
this fairytale country, as she called it, Yaya was very fascinated
by the home of the Danish-Pakistani Roxy family:

“I think their home makes them happy, because they have the
opportunity to combine the beauty they find in both cultures and
make it their own. Even though I don’t have a lot of room where I
live in Hong Kong, I can still play with colors and make my room my
own universe. That is definitely something I will take home with

After her two-week stay in Denmark in September, she reflected
on the following:

”I think how you live is very important, because the home is a
safe space where you can re-energize and be yourself. The Danish
homes are a reflection of the Danes. They live so personally and
that is why it has been essential to visit them. It is in their
homes and in homely surroundings that the Danes truly blossom and
show who they are.”

Living large and beautifully

42-year old Roy from Chicago was, aside from the high taxes and
government support, astonished by the small container home of
Danish student, Katrine:

”The containers were the simplest and most minimalistic homes
I have ever seen, but they were so homey. In Denmark, quality
furniture is more affordable so even when you are a student, you
can style your home beautifully”

The aspiring boxing instructor living in a one bedroom apartment

”The Danes spend a lot of time furnishing and decorating –
not just their homes but in restaurants, cafes and businesses, it
feels like a lot of time and energy is spent on furnishing and
decorating – also with the whole wave of Nordic design. Perhaps
you design your happiness when you design your home in Denmark,
because it is so personal, prioritized and defining for the Danes,
no matter if you are in a private sphere or out on the

What are the Danes so happy about?

As they endured the bad weather and even a Viking dip in the
ocean, Roy and Yaya experienced more and more factors to the
Danes’ happiness by each visit in someone’s home. Finally, Yaya

”The Danes’ happiness is many little pieces that together
make them a satisfied group of people – even though there is a
lot of rain and darkness outside, the Danes’ homes are like
little caves where they can hide from this and find calmness and

IKEA Denmark Happiness Hunter Roy Torres and Yaya Ching

To follow Roy and Yaya’s happiness journey, go to and
see each episode from their visit to a unique Danish home.

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The secret to happiness. Did the IKEA happiness hunters find the
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Source: FS – NYC Real Estate
The secret to happiness. Did the IKEA happiness hunters find the answer?