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Apple previews the Apple Fifth Avenue ‘cube’ retail store

Apple has previewed the new Apple Fifth Avenue, an entirely reimagined space beneath one of New York City’s most recognized landmarks. It boasts a luminous glass cube rising above a newly designed public plaza.

Now nearly double the size of its original version with a higher ceiling and more natural light, Apple Fifth Avenue is a brighter, more expansive space, and the perfect stage for customers to discover and try Apple’s newest products, according to Deirdre O’Brien, Apple’s senior vice president of Retail + People. A new Forum will be home to free, daily Today at Apple programming, which kicks off Saturday with a special series that captures the creative spirit of New York. 

The area dedicated to Geniuses has also doubled, allowing the team to increase service capacity. It remains the only Apple retail location open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

Steve Jobs opened the store in 2006 and personally welcomed the first customers to enter the cube. Since then, Apple Fifth Avenue has had over 57 million visitors, more annually than the Statue of Liberty or Empire State Building. The glass cube has been a focal point for product launches starting with the first iPhone in 2007. This Friday, Apple Fifth Avenue will see the launch and availability of the iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro, iPhone 11 Pro Max, and Apple Watch Series 5.

The redesigned plaza is lined by 28 honey locust trees bordered with linear fountains providing a quiet setting to gather and sit. At the center stands the glass cube flanked by 18 mirror-glass Skylenses and 62 skylights that flood natural light into the expanded store below. Visitors enter by descending the new stainless steel spiral staircase, or by riding the dynamic circular elevator into the grand hall. 

The staircase has 43 cantilevered stair treads that support a floating cylinder of glass. Above is a back-lit, cloud-like ceiling made from curved fabric that combines artificial and natural light to match the real-time tones of sunlight throughout the day.

Apple Fifth Avenue will be staffed with 900 employees who speak over 30 languages. It reopens tomorrow, Sept. 20, at 8 a.m.

Dennis Sellers
the authorDennis Sellers
Dennis Sellers is the editor/publisher of Apple World Today. He’s been an “Apple journalist” since 1995 (starting with the first big Apple news site, MacCentral). He loves to read, run, play sports, and watch movies.