Did you know that Ultimate Electronics went out of business? Probably not. And if you did, you probably didn’t care.
I only cared (and I’m using that term loosely here) because A.) I run a blog about about dead retail stores and B.) I live in the area. It’s kind of hard to ignore the giant, empty big box shell staring at you from the busy intersection of Hemlock Lane and Elm Creek Boulevard.
Ultimate Electronics was a chain of electronics store (they sold electronics? You don’t say!) in select states. Minnesota was graced with six locations: Woodbury, Roseville, Burnsville, Edina and of course, Maple Grove.
The entire chain closed up shop in 2011 because when they filed bankruptcy, they couldn’t afford to keep buying new inventory. They had planned to keep some stores open after filing, but instead, shut down the entire operation. In its wake, it left The Shoppes at Arbor Lakes (the “e” makes it klassy, you see) with yet another abandoned storefront.
ANOTHER abandoned storefront in Arbor Lakes? As in, more-than-one? Yep. In case you haven’t been paying attention (or don’t live in the area), The Shoppes at Arbor Lakes have quite a nice assortment of empty stores, including three huge “anchor” spots. As of now, these spots are empty: Ultimate Electronics, Borders, Cost Plus World Market, Abercrombie & Fitch, Ann Taylor and Aldo (There might be more though).
Oh, and across the street, that Boston restaurant closed too, but it won’t be empty for long. Maple Grove is getting a Redstone. Cougars, come out out to prowl!
As for Ultimate Electronics, well, if you read this blog regularly, you’ll know I’m not a fan of electronics stores! And Ultimate Electronics is no different.
I think I went here once? It was back in 2007 and we were in the market for a new TV. I went in there by myself to do some price comparing, even though we pretty much already made up our minds that we would buy it from Costco.
So I walked in there and I swear, it was like throwing myself to a pack of circling vultures. See, their salesguys (and yes, GUYS because I did not see one female salesperson) work on commission and if they want a paycheck, they need to move those TVs.
The store maybe had 5 other customers in there? It was really slow, so as I wandered around the TVs, I had a half dozen salesguys tailing me. One asked me if I needed help, so I obliged and told him what we were looking for and what price range we were looking to spend.
Because he’s hell-bent on getting a good commission, he whisks me over to the most expensive TV they had, which was clearly more than what I was willing to spend. He shot down all the makes/models I was interested in “Those are crap!!” And before I even try to interject, he’s telling me about the warranty plan and all the goddamn accessories I need. Wall mount! HDMI cables! Power strips! Receiver! Speakers!
I don’t even want the damn TV!
When I had the chance to get a word in, I told him I wasn’t interested in spending that much and could he show me ones in my price range. But he couldn’t let this go. Oh no! Again, he told me how all the TVs on my list were “a piece of crap” and “won’t last you 6 months” and that I should go with this particular one — I’d be a fool not to. Because of COURSE he was thinking, “Dumb girl don’t know jack about TVs.” Push, push push!
Dude, I don’t care if you roll on the floor, scream, cry and wet yourself, I’m not buying this goddamn TV!
I wanted to tell him something like that but I didn’t. I told him that I just wanted to look and wasn’t planning on buying anything today. Once I made that clear, he didn’t want anything to do with me. He must’ve told his colleagues too because I had the entire TV area all to myself. Which was great, but I did end up having a few questions. No worries though. In today’s world, I would’ve been looking up information right in the store on my smartphone. But it was 2007 and I had a cheap Sprint flip phone. It was pink.
We ended up buying the TV from Costco. Great decision! Haggle-free, great price and yes, the TV still works great today.
So, as you can tell, I’m not mourning the loss of Ultimate Electronics. My memories associated with that store involve sleazy salesmen. I doubt you’re going to suffer a mental breakdown at any given time when thinking about this store, and then end up crying at work, sitting on the toilet. Not going to happen with this place.
Costco? Yeah, I’ll chain myself to a parking lot lightpost for that chain.
Ultimate Electronics? Die in a fire. …A fire fueled with flat screen TVs and goddamn HDMI cables, of course
Memories of Ultimate Electronics? Post in the comments!