Need a high-end home entertainment system for that new high-buck condo? Bang and Olufsen has joined the Downtown amenities market with a satellite location within Walsh Design Group's Inside Design store, 100 2nd Ave. N. in North Loop.
Bang and Olufsen can turn your loft into a home theater. Said storeowner Scott Rosoff: with one push of a button, the curtains will close, the lights will dim and your favorite DVD will begin to play. You can even control your heat or air conditioning, Rosoff said. (You'll have to make your own popcorn.)
Bang and Olufsen, headquartered in Struer, Denmark, has been in business for 80 years, according to the parent company's Web site. Rosoff's stores are independently owned, he said.
Rosoff said he opened the location "to support the tons of lofts we're getting in Downtown Minneapolis." It works in concert with his larger store in Edina's Galleria.
Aside from custom and retail business, his company has done front-end "home automations" in many of the recent condominium developments.
Walk-ins are welcome, as well. The 600-square-foot Bang and Olufsen showroom melds well with Inside Design's offering of modern-design furniture and housing dcor. Entering the Bang and Olufsen section is a bit like walking from a posh living room into a state-of-the-art entertainment room.
The 42-inch BeoVision 5 plasma television commands instant attention and is surrounded by metallic speakers and other components like music systems that would fit in well on the Starship Enterprise.
Wave a hand in front of the BeoSound 3000 CD player and radio, and the glass doors slide open like magic. The long, slim BeoSound 9000 - a Bang and Olufsen classic, according to salesperson Rodd Johnson - is a wall-mounted six-CD changer and radio that looks like part of the dcor and works like a sleek art robot.
A home or wireless computer can be linked up, as well, and the whole system can be distributed to up to 15 rooms in a house. While one can walk in and buy a single component, much of Bang and Olufsen's business is custom installation, according to Rosoff.
None of it comes cheap, as you can imagine. Prices run from a few thousand dollars for a plasma-screen TV to the hundreds of thousands for complete home automation, said Rosoff.
Although the showroom has been open for several months, Rosoff has been slowly getting this location up to speed. Installation of computer systems, phones and the like has been a big delay, he said. (Ironically, the state-of-the-art BeoVision 5 currently gets reception through a "rabbit-ears" antenna while the showroom awaits cable installation.) However, Rosoff said, the showroom is "built and ready for business."