Circle Wednesday, November 28 on your calendar, shoppers. That’s when Winnipeg’s most anticipated store in decades will be open for business.
IKEA announced Wednesday during a media event at its future store when the public can expect to load up their shopping carts and fill their stomachs with Swedish meatballs.
The foreign furniture giant’s store at the corner of Sterling Lyon Parkway and Kenaston Boulevard will be 395,671-square-feet once open. A hiring blitz of 300 staff has already commenced and the store’s Winnipeg-born manager, Stephen Bobko, is at the helm.
“With only 70 days to go, the excitement is mounting,” Bobko said.
The public can walk through the doors for the first time at 8 a.m., with an official opening ceremony taking place at 8:20 a.m. Festivities will include entertainment, giveaways and appearances by special guests.
The Winnipeg store will be IKEA’s newest market expansion in 30 years, and include 55 inspirational room settings, 14 kitchen showrooms, two fully furnished home settings and a 2,228-square-foot children’s play area. It’s also one of the only IKEA locations to have a revolving front door.
The restaurant on the second level will have the capacity to hold 651 people, where IKEA expects to serve up 120,000 meatballs in its first week alone. The size of the restaurant will make it the largest in the city.
Of the 300 staff needed for the store, IKEA has already hired 200 people, who are currently getting experience by working in other stores within Canada. Bobko expects the hiring process to be completed in a few weeks.
Winnipeg residents should watch their mailboxes the first week of October. That’s when IKEA is expected to distribute 300,000 catalogues in the city leading up to the store’s opening and the busy Christmas shopping season.