'Every day was absolutely crazy': Costco six months on
IT'S been six months since Costco was inundated with keen members-to-be with large volumes of people descending on the store, bringing surrounding traffic to a standstill on its grand opening day.
Ipswich warehouse manager Nick Weller said things had finally started to settle from the initial opening.
"When we first opened, there was a lot of excitement. The building was very, very busy. Everyone wanted to come have a look,” he said.
"Those first couple of months, every day was absolutely crazy. There were people everywhere. Now it seems to have settled in to a normal routine.
"A lot of people, if they came in those first few weeks, it's not like that anymore. If you haven't been for a while it's worth coming back and having a look now.”
Mr Weller said thousands of people from across the southeast had signed up to become Costco members through the Bundamba store.
"We have members from Toowoomba. It's probably in the top 10 places that shop here,” he said.
"Sunnybank, all the way to Coomera, Gold Coast area. Our top suburbs include Amberley, obviously Ipswich, Springfield Lakes and Inala are our big areas.”
Mr Weller said it was the unique items found at the store that brought people back.
"When you come here, it's an experience,” he said.
"It's fun, it's fun to be here, people love coming in and joining in the fun.
"Last weekend, we had the fresh food weekend. We have all our vendors come in who are sampling meats and fruit and veg.”
With Christmas around the corner, festive stock has already made its way onto Costco shelves.
"We've just moved into our busiest time of the year. We had a big Halloween set that's come and gone and that was really popular, but now it's all about Christmas,” Mr Weller said.
"We've got outdoor decorations, so you'll see big lit up snowmen and reindeer and the sleigh. We've got a 15 foot Christmas (4.5m) tree in. We've got water sports, a big slip and slide, we've got blow-up boats, we've got massive pools.
"We do roll out with gift hampers, Christmas chocolates. We've got a massive stocking at the moment. It's a unique Costco item and a couple of vendors have joined in there. It's got Mars, Dairy and Kinder Surprise in there.
"It's a 100 piece, 1.3 kilogram giant Christmas stocking.”
Mr Weller said their pizza range had also proven popular with regular customers.
"Even when Northlakes opened, the pizza business there was huge. It just seems to be a Queensland thing. People just love pizza up here,” he said.
"We have the deli department that sells the ready-to-cook pizzas and they've been a massive success and then in the food court, we just can't keep up. Every day it's busy over there, everyone's ordering whole pizzas, so it's exciting.”