Furniture shopping options in Salmon Arm have expanded by about 20,000 square feet.
Ashley Homestore recently opened its doors at 521 10th St. SW, near the Mall at Piccadilly. Despite a small “now open” sign being one of the few indications, store manager Tina Gaberel said she and her team have been busy with people stopping by to check out and look through the new location.
“We thought it would have been a little bit slower,” said a grateful Gaberel, explaining the soft open has been an opportunity to make sure everything is running smoothly, while not encouraging too many people into the store at one time, so as to respect to pandemic restrictions on public gathering.
The store is owned by the Case family. Dennis and Marion Case, who have been in the furniture business since 1976, ran Case Furniture in their former hometown of Enderby before turning the store into an Ashley Homestore. The family also brought Ashley stores to Kelowna and Vernon.
“It was a massive store,” said Gaberel of the Enderby location, which closed its doors in 2017.
Gaberal explained many of the Enderby store’s customers were from Salmon Arm, and came from as far as Revelstoke and Chase. So a decision was made to open a new location within the central Shuswap city.
The search for a location eventually led to discussions with local developer Bill Laird, and sights were set on construction of a new building that could provide the space desired for Ashley Homestore’s extensive showroom.
“What we really want to bring to Salmon Arm is the customer service,” said Gaberel. “Staff are all trained to take care of their customers and follow up, making sure our clients are being taken care of after the products are in the home.”
Unlike the former Enderby location, the new store does not offer appliances. However, it does offer a wide array of home furnishings produced by Ashley Furniture Industries, as well as home accents and more.
“We do bedrooms, dining, home office, the lamps, the rugs – we have some decorating knowledge between us so we can help pull packages together for clients who aren’t sure of what goes with what,” said Gaberel.
There’s also a separate area where people can find a mattress best suited to their sleep needs.
“There are courses we have to take on sleep and how to diagnose you for the correct mattress,” said Gaberel. “There’s a lot of background knowledge given to all sales associates so we can match you up to the right mattress.”
Born and raised in Salmon Arm, Gaberel is thrilled with the new Ashley Homestore location, and she and her team have been grateful for the feedback received so far.
“I think it’s a great addition to Salmon Arm,” said Gaberel. “A lot of people have come in and have been really surprised and happy to see it. Overall they’re really excited and welcoming and happy we’re here, so that’s been great.”
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