The sheer size of Lee’s Summit’s new At Home superstore got the attention of consumers driving by on Missouri 291 this week.
Jan Hostetler had worked in the nursing home industry for 35 years and now decorates nursing homes as a volunteer. She stopped in hoping to find decorative pieces for a new coffee shop at one area nursing home and At Home had them — including a piece of artwork showing a steaming cup of coffee and the words Cafe Latte and Espresso.
But lawn furniture also caught Hostetler’s eye, so she’ll be back to do a little shopping for her home.
“It’s big, but it is very well organized,” said Hostetler, of Lee’s Summit.
The home decor superstore, based in Plano, Texas, took over an 87,000-square-foot former Kmart at 601 N. Missouri 291 in late 2014 and, after an exterior and interior remodeling, it had a soft opening April 2.
Its grand opening Friday included a ribbon cutting. The giveaways start at 9 a.m. Saturday, with the first 20 customers receiving $200 At Home gift cards and 250 people receiving free tote bags.
A large chunk of the store is devoted to seasonal items, which currently include lawn furniture, garden decor and Fourth of July decorations — from a towering Uncle Sam top hat to red, white and blue bunting — and “pillows, lots and lots of pillows,” said one seemingly dazed shopper after she spied row after row of outdoor pillows.
At Home says it sets its stores apart by just such breadth and depth of home decor products, more than 50,000 items at “everyday low prices.” That includes 600 styles and sizes of rugs, a faux marble-topped dining room table, tufted sofas, storage cabinets that resemble old Phillips 66 gas pumps, lamps, shelving and racks, a row of mirrors, pottery, bedding, drinkware and dinnerware like a three-piece set with the characters from the Disney hit “Frozen.”
Customers said part of the fun was spending time searching the aisles to check out all the offerings. But At Home said it organizes those aisles in such a way that a customer with just a few minutes to shop can quickly find an item.
At Home has 85 stores in 22 states. This is its fourth store in Missouri. Its first Kansas store is scheduled to open in Olathe in late May — a 104,000-square-foot store in a former Kmart at 2000 E. Santa Fe. A Wichita store is scheduled to open later this year.
At Home Group Inc. formerly operated under the name Garden Ridge, which was founded in 1979. Garden Ridge opened a store in Independence in 1999, but the company closed the store after a bankruptcy reorganization in 2004.
In 2014, it spent $20 million rebranding and redecorating the stores to the new At Home brand.
At Home is open from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Saturday and from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday.