A whole new world has been built around what it is supposed to be the biggest Ikea furniture shop in the whole America. On Wednesday, dozens of employees greeted more than 1,000 curious consumers that attended the opening day of the big warehouse. The location is in the North Tarrant Parkway at 805 S. San Fernando Boulevard. The vivid blue and yellow construction measures a total of 456,000-square-foot perimeter and holds 900 parking lots.
Before the first customer purchased an Ikea product, Jeff O’Shaughnessy, the store manager together with the Burbank Mayor Jess Talamantes greeted everyone in traditional Swedish style. Scandinavian people have many different traditions, and one of them replaces the dull yet symbolic ribbon-cutting with a more exciting activity. The two officials started to saw a log in half so as to mark the beginning of a new prosperous business.
Another noteworthy event was the culture of the waiting line. The furniture shop promised free products for the first customers that enter their new facility at 6 a.m. However, there were already several hundred persons lined up in front of the shop at 5:30 a.m. when the police were called to mitigate the situation. Nonetheless, the officers didn’t encounter any incident. People created a waiting list, so everyone kept their places in a calm manner.
Joseph Roth, the spokesman for the new Ikea store, was surprised to see so many people. The initial plan was to award the first 26 persons with a sofa and an armchair to the following 100 customers. However, the impressive response they got changed their minds to use a lottery system instead. This way, everyone had a chance to receive an Ikea gift.
Things were already settled when at 9 a.m. the gates opened to let more than 1,000 people in the new Ikea furniture shop. They took an escalator to the main showroom that measures a surface of 77,500-square-foot. A reporter streamed his attempt to cross the entire building in one walk which took 30 minutes to finish. The customers observed an interesting additional line of products, namely bicycles and trailers. On the whole, customers were delighted to experience a spacious showroom with some appealing mixes of Swedish furniture pieces. The restaurant was another point of attraction, especially for its 600 seats.
Image source: 1