London, as we all know, is a pretty important place in the general scheme of things, what with the Stock Exchange, Wembley Stadium and Buckingham Palace. But if you happen to be a resident of the 2,000 year old city, from tomorrow you can walk that little bit taller, in the knowledge that Apple has chosen to open its biggest store in the world in the capital.
From 10am tomorrow (7 August) Apple’s new Covent Garden store will open its doors and take the crown as the largest Apple retail store anywhere.
There will be dedicated rooms for Macs, iPads, iPhone and iPods for the hordes of tourists to lovingly fondle and caress and free technical support will be available from the Genius Bar. Personal training – presumably limited to Apple products – can be had through One to One programmes. There’s a Community Room for group learning, and the Pro Labs, where customers can sign-up for in-depth sessions on topics such as Final Cut Pro.
The store features a central courtyard, where free workshops and presentations will be held beneath a skylight that, we are told, is ‘breathtaking’.
There shouldn’t be a shortage of staff either, as we’re informed, there will be 300 passionate employees on hand to help liberate visitors' cash in exchange for Apple’s magical products.
Apple’s retail stores have been central to its strategy since 2001, and the Covent Garden store is its 300th. The company claims that in 2010, 150 million people have so far visited its stores across ten countries, and this will be in no small part why Apple is now the largest tech company in the world.
"We are thrilled to open a new store in this amazing location in Covent Garden," said Ron Johnson, Apple's senior vice president of retail, in a statement. "Our store on Regent Street is one of the most popular and successful Apple stores in the world, and we think the people of London will love the new Apple Store Covent Garden just as much."
Microsoft has copied Apple’s approach and opened stores of its own in 2009, but it has some way to go to catch up, as it only has four stores and all are in the US. Close then, but no cigar.
Link: Apple Covent Garden Store.