Imagine, if you will, a store that has 9,500 products (increased from 4,500) stuffed inside a structure that is 427,000 square feet. A restaurant with 640 seats, 55 room settings, 3 full home displays, 36 cash lanes, 1,200 parking spaces, energy efficient AND gives its customers a workout in its 1.3km stretch of walkways meandering through this impressive structure. Well, as you've probably heard, you don't have to imagine it, because Ottawa is now home to Canada's largest IKEA retail store. It opened yesterday - December 7 - to a crowd of about 350 waiting outside the store to be the first to experience the brand new store.
Lara and I had the opportunity to go to a press event that IKEA had on Monday night where we were able to tour the store, ask questions and take lots of pictures to share with all of you.
This restaurant has a cafeteria feel to it, but it is not your run-of-the-mill, industrial cafeteria. No, it's stylish, attractive and the section for kids is just really cute!
If you ever went into the old IKEA store, you know how (not) big the children's section was. I didn't think to ask, but the kids section in the new store has got to be about 3-4 times bigger - and that's not including the IKEA Småland!
It's impressive, but beware - it's got a 45 minute time limit, so come to IKEA with your running shoes on and be ready to sprint through the store! I'm going to leave Brandon at home for the first trip so I can go get that elephant for Christmas - it's just too cute.
There's more - so much more - than I could include in the pictures. You'll really have to go out and see it to appreciate all that is available particularly for children. IKEA wants us to help one lucky reader have a little extra special time enjoying their new store with a $100 Gift Certificate to be awarded next week.
All you have to do to enter this contest is comment on this post and tell us one thing you're excited to go see in the new store! A winner will be picked from the commenters and announced next Tuesday on the blog. Your deadline to enter is Monday, December 12th at 7:00pm.