Nick Statt for The Verge documents the unveiling of Apple’s new flagship retail store in San Francisco:
Probably best that you scroll right down and click through the link for photos - it’s really gorgeous. (These ones from Dezeen are better, though.)
This definitely clicked with me. Ahrendts makes it obvious now what Apple’s going for: making the Apple Store not just a retail store or an educational center, but a cultural center. Kind of like how Starbucks made the coffeeshop more than just a place to get coffee.
A few takeaways:
- Big props to Angela Ahrendts, Apple’s retail VP and the one largely responsible for their retail overhaul the past few years (alongside Design VP Jony Ive and architecture firm Foster + Partners). Great hire, and good to see that the train’s still rolling with this new store.
- Seems that the new design language for retail nowadays involves a lot of wood, as opposed to the Jobsian matte grey panelling. I quite like it - it introduces warmer tones to the store, which is fitting given that Apple’s Gold and Rose Gold devices do the same for Apple’s product portfolio.
- Also seems like the gleaming white logo’s been replaced by a mirror finish. Personally not a fan, judging from the photos - the distorted reflection doesn’t do it any good. Reminds me of the mirrored edge on Steve Jobs’ yacht designed with Philippe Starck - a little gaudy and unrefined compared to the rest of the structure.
- A little off-putting at first seeing solid pillars in Apple’s usually all-glass facade. Cool thing that they’re actually part of huge sliding doors. Probably would’ve preferred rotating glass panels like they’ve shown before, though.
- The Genius Grove doesn’t seem to have any seats by the few tables that are there. Good luck trying to bring a Mac in - seems that they had iOS devices in mind coming up with the Grove.