I will admit from the very beginning that I was one of those very excited about IKEA coming to Denver. Not in the mass hysteria way that many of my fellow Coloradoans were consumed by. I didn’t have a desire to wait in line 4-days, but in a curious way. I’ve driven past many IKEA’s on trips to Europe and friends of mine from around the world have told me how cool the store was. So, when it came time for IKEA to open in Denver, I wanted to be there. I even had Diane talked into going on opening day until the bat flew into our house and we got a bit sidetracked. Finally, at 3:45p on Friday, we pulled off I-25 and County Line Road and began our adventure.
Now I must say the site of police cars spaced every 100-yeards or so for about a mile made me wonder what I was getting in to, but we followed their directions and were led to the street going to the IKEA parking garage. Dozens and dozens of vested traffic directors guided us first along side IKEA, then to the front of IKEA, then under IKEA into the parking garage, then past lots of empty parking spaces and out the other side of the parking garage and back onto the street leaving IKEA. After all this time I had just be sent beside, in front of, under, back in front of and out IKEA without stopping. I felt like Moses seeing the Promised Land from afar, but never entering. What the heck just happened?? So, back into line we went, past a few more vested traffic directors and finally, we were granted a parking space. Finally, we were on the path to see the wizard, and I have to admit I was a little excited!
I wish I could think of something more poetic to describe my first impression entering the store, but OMG is all I can think of. This place is HUGE, but it doesn’t seem like it when you’re in it at first. You start walking through rows and rows of themed merchandise. Kitchens, Bathrooms, Bedrooms, Living Rooms, Home Offices and there’s even room after decorated room for each area. You also find bins of merchandise that are very reasonably priced. Odds and Ends that you’ll find useful and probably a lot of stuff you don’t need, but who can pass up the price. It was obvious to me that many in the herd have never been to Europe and some of the styles of items puzzled them. One lady standing next to me said “It’s about time Denver had authentic European furnishings available.” I didn’t have the heart to show her the made in China label on the back of the lamp she was holding. I’m also hoping they found assistance for the person who said “Is this Heaven?”, to be answered by his spouse who said “No, it’s IKEA.” That’s just wrong.
My advice to you on your first visit is to not load up your cart at first. Walk all the way through the store. Go to the restaurant and enjoy some Swedish Meatballs, then go back through with a better understanding of what there is. It’s so HUGE you’ll be changing your mind a couple of times about things. What did we end up buying? The lovely new office chair I’m sitting in while writing this; a new comforter set for our bed and a few odds and ends. It was two-hours of window shopping, planning for our next visit and seeing things you don’t usually see around here. It was obvious many were there just to say they were there. Some wondered around in a daze looking for a place to lie down, mostly husbands. But I LOVE THE PLACE!!! I can’t wait to go back, but Diane says it’ll be a couple weeks. She’s afraid I’ll ask if this is Heaven again!