Ikea had a great party last night! They invited a lot of local bloggers and media to come see the store before the grand opening tomorrow.
I brought along Melanie who helps me with baby/kids stuff. We had a lot of fun checking out the store, testing out many couches and chairs. The store is really geared towards families too – even spare diapers at the front desk. I was already a fan of Ikea, since when we lived in Vancouver it was one of my favourite places to wander around and check out the great displays.
As many of you know, I rarely go out at night or drink – so this was a really fun girls night out for us. I think the store should offer this more often – kid free shopping with a drink in hand is very relaxing! 🙂 I know there were people who were upset about a media only event – we did get the same 15% off discount that everyone else got on saturday at the friends and family event. I was a little worried that I might go shopping crazy – but as anyone who’s been to Ikea knows it’s a bit of a sensory overload. Saw a lot of stuff I like, but want to go back as a family and get their opinions. I ended up getting a few things for the kiddo, a few gifts and spent $40. The discount saved me a whole $6 – the horror! 😉 And yes, we got some very nice swag bags – but that’s pretty common for any grand opening type of event.
I don’t go to every event I’m invited to – there’s not enough time and often it’s things I’m just not interested in – and that I know a lot of you would feel the same about. Same as how I don’t work with every company that asks me – often it’s not a fit for our family, or products we don’t use or I’d feel uncomfortable endorsing.
We had a great time last night, a big thanks to Ikea for throwing a great party! Also love the fact that they were super responsible and provided taxis since there was alcohol being served.
As far as the store goes – it’s Ikea. You either love it or you don’t. I loved the new store, it’s huge and well organized. Was fun to check out the displays, see how cool the cafeteria is. I think it will become the “it” place to meet up for cheap lunch and breakfast etc. I hadn’t planned on going back until the new year, but I think I’ll be braving the crowds in December and meet up with Melanie’s family so we can show the kids the store.
Of course I freaked out when I saw the enormous clearance area at the end of the store! How did I forget about this? A huge room of slightly damaged stuff – and sometimes you’ll be placing something against a wall etc. so the damage wouldn’t even show. Some pieces are just scratched and need a paint job – always fun with kids stuff anyway.
So, after knowing all of you for 4 years now through blogging, chatting etc. do you think the $6 savings and bag of free stuff could have possibly changed my mind about Ikea? I chose to go for fun and to see the store. As a free agent and not employed by any organization I’m free to accept a glass (or more) of wine and an appetizer. If it was a company I didn’t agree with would it have changed my mind, or would I have written them up a positive review? I’ll leave that decision up to you.
As far as my readership goes I think most of you will enjoy the store – it’s not just for ladies as some people are saying too. My husband is looking forward to checking it out too. I’m glad Winnipeg finally got an Ikea store – perfect place to check out on a cold winter day. If you’re looking for a quick, fun way to do all you xmas shopping in one place you won’t be disappointed. The toys for 1-4 yrs old were amazing – sad my kiddo has outgrown these! Also loved all the self checkouts, easy to use and it went really quick.
Anyone planning on lining up tomorrow morning? Keep us posted if you do – and good luck winning some prizes!
And a big thank you to Ikea for inviting us and putting on such a great party. Can’t wait to see what everyone else thinks of the store tomorrow!
Thanks for the review! I’m excited to check it out. I’ll wait a bit though, so the huge crowds die down slightly. I don’t think it’s a conflict of interest to invite media to an opening – people in the public life get a LOT of freebies – it goes with the territory. Also, if a lot of bloggers were there, its an easy and cheap way of them getting some advertising in, with perspective from people who have experienced it first hand! It’s a private company, and they can invite pretty much whomever they want to their grand opening festivities! Just my opinion, though.
I just watched the cbc piece on it – i like that they make it sound like it was an exclusive event for 15% off – on saturday my entire facebook feed was full of people getting 15% off. I’m curious as to how the crowds will be at the start – and when it will level off.
Whoever went to the Media Ikea Event, is already a fan of Ikea to begin with. If you’re not a fan, you wouldn’t have gone – plain and simple.
As for Gift Bags – If it’s such a big deal, then they could have said no!
15% discount – Again, could have said no!
Booze – Another No Thank You could have been used here as well!
The people making a big stink about it all seem to be the ones who didn’t attend.
Not our problem if they can’t control their booze intake, gift accepting or compulsion to buy things! Seriously.
It’s a store opening, it’s meant to be fun, and inviting!
I will be checking the store out, however, not tomorrow, perhaps I’ll be waiting until Monday to check things out.
I would have LOVED to go! I’m jealous you got to see everything close up and had first dibs on everything. I don’t see any reason why you should be even slightly apologetic that you went. I think it’s a nice honour to be invited! It means that people notice and respect your opinion, me included. Thanks for the review!
thanks katherine! Really appreciate it 🙂 I’m not apologetic at all, some people were taking potshots at bloggers on twitter about it and wanted to be upfront. I think i’m usually pretty upfront, i tell you guys when i’m mad at a store, if i didn’t like something etc. Not all sunshine and roses 🙂 I kind of figured most of you guys would get it – it’s Ikea. As if I wasn’t going to like it! Especially that clearance department – can’t wait til next year when we can all just pop in to check that out.
Awesome that you got to go! Your blog is great at promoting Winnipeg, so it’s only natural that you got to go! If anyone was taking potshots it’s probably because they were jealous! I’ll definitely be checking out the new store, in the new year, once all the hubbub has died down!
Thanks Carla! I was like you, totally wasn’t planning on going til january but think will brave it. It’s such a big store, think if go at an offtime might not be too bad. And there’s so many extra little things I wanted to get too.
I am so jealous that you got invited to a pre event! I have a friend that got invited to Family and Friends on the weekend. Glad you had a good time. And I agree, don’t apologize. You’ve worked hard to build your blog!
I will be there tomorrow!! But I’m not lining up all night. I’m not that crazy. I’m aiming to get there around 9 so HOPEFULLY the line wont be too long. We’ll see. I figure the store is pretty big so the line will hopefully move decently.
Thanks Jo! Good luck tomorrow! I’m almost tempted to line up just for fun, but not sure I’m brave enough to do it! Heard they’re going to have port a pottys etc at least. There’s a ton of checkouts too, so hope the store flows quickly for you.
As you know, I was there too and I had a blast! I’m a little disheartened that we were lumped into the media controversy when no one had a clue that local bloggers were invited… even interior designers! What it came down to was if you can’t accept freebies, then you can’t. I wasn’t paid, nor were you, so there’s no ethical issue. The gift bag was sweet and yes, it happens at all major events. Media invited to the VIP theatres before it oepened received free food and drink.
I loved it. It was a fun night. I was able to shop before the public gained access, picked up a few things for $40.
I wonder what the ratio was for bloggers, journalists, radio etc? It was definitely a mixed group, have to say i only recognized maybe 5 or 6 people tops. Keep seeing there was from 100-250 people there too. I love gift bags – as an adult it’s rare to get. Not like my kiddo who gets one almost every weekend at a birthday party! 😉 I enjoyed myself, and will shop there again and again so no qualms about posting about it. I was already posting about it way before, and really, who didn’t think i’d be posting about it – come on, it’s Ikea! 🙂 I can’t wait for people to start to post what they find in the clearance area too, that will be fun.
Glad you had a good time too, and i hope the dramarama over it is short lived, not fair to ikea or any who attended.
Exciting you got to go. I would have loved to go. My hubs is lining up at midnight and I will be back to join him in the early morning! We’re super stoked!
Good plan Chelsea! and good luck, hope you guys win something great! if you tweet out the pics, or anyone else does, send them to me at @couponwinnipeg Would love to see the lineups and how it goes. Hopefully they take good care of everyone and pass out some hot chocolate!
How exciting! Thanks for sharing!
I am excited to go. I think their room
displays are great! Always an interesting pop
of color or decorative item thrown in!
You deserve the fun, Nadine! You help
out so many of us by what you do!:)
Thanks Cindy! and you’re totally right – it’s super ispiring to check out their room displays. I have my eye on a lot of the kids room items – just so adorable, and the colors they use are perfect. Can’t wait til people start posting up pics of all their rooms they’ve redone with ikea! 🙂
Everybody makes so big deal about Ikea , little to much I think.
Nothing else is happening in this city just Ikea 🙁