Home / News / Gadget News / First Look: We take a sneak peek inside Apple’s brand new Regent Street store

First Look: We take a sneak peek inside Apple’s brand new Regent Street store

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Apple Store Regent Street 41

The Apple Store on Regent Street, London has been closed to the public since June this year. But on Saturday, October 15, its doors will open once again, revealing a brand new design – and we've already taken a sneak peak at what it looks like.

Regent Street was Apple’s first ever store in Europe, opening 12 years ago. Since then, Apple has served over 60 million customers on the site, marking it as one of the company’s most prized and lucrative retail sites. That’s why it’s no surprise that the Regent Street store is the first Apple Store in Europe to roll out the company’s new retail design concept, which first debuted in the states earlier this year.

The Regent Street store will re-open on Saturday, October 15, at 10am, boasting entirely new areas that include the tree-lined 'Avenue', a hands-on 'Boardroom', and a ‘Forum’ space that seats 75 people. The Forum is home to a new (and giant) TV screen, which will be used to promote and feature new store programming under the ‘Today at Apple’ brand. If you’re interest, you’ll be able to find events at the store using the Apple website.

Watch our Facebook Live tour of the new Apple Regent Street store here

Apple Store Regent Street

The new store was designed in partnership with Foster + Partners, a prestigious London-based architecture and design firm that has offices around the world. Here’s an excerpt from the company’s website:

“Over the past four decades, the practice has pioneered a sustainable approach to architecture through a strikingly wide range of work, from urban masterplans, public infrastructure, airports, civic and cultural buildings, offices, and workplaces, to private houses and product design.”

Apple design chief Sir Jony Ive, along with Angela Ahrendts, Apple’s VP of Retail and Online Stores, also helped create the redesigned store, which was based on the new retail design concept that debuted in Apple’s San Francisco store in May this year. According to Ive, Apple has tried to give the new Regent Street store its own unique feel. Speaking to Wallpaper* last month, he said:

“Like many great cities, London’s historic architecture has great significance to the community. On Regent Street, we preserved the incredible exterior façade while opening up the interior of the store to enhance the transparency and flood the space with natural light. By choosing materials sympathetic to the historic nature of the building, we’re able to modernise the space while remaining authentic to its surrounds."

The actual building features a Grade II Listed exterior façade of portland stone, carrara marble, and hand-cut Venetian Smalti glass tile.

Apple Store Regent Street 5

Speaking to press at today's briefing, Ahrendts said: "I know how iconic and important Regent Street is, not just to London and the UK, but on the global stage, it's one of the most important streets in the world."

She added that a new staff position would be opened up at the Apple Store on Regent Street called Creative Pro: "We're also announcing a new position...experts, pros, if you will, on photography, on gaming, on music – that position is called Creative Pro. We also have Geniuses...we now have a Creative Pro to answer any question you might have on our software and services."

Apple Store Regent Street 25Angela Ahrendts speaking to press at the Regent Store re-opening

Wendy Beckman, Apple's Senior Marketing Director for Europe, was also on-hand to talk about the new changes: "For those of you that can remember, Regent Street looked quite different in 2004 when we opened up our doors. We were really excited to introduce the iMac G5 and iPod Photo."

She continued: "Today marks a new day for Apple Regent Street. The avenues when you walk in, they're inspired by our boulevard and windows. You can sit underneath the trees; it's a really calming environment. It really blurs the line between inside and outside."

Beckman also confirmed a major change for the Apple store: the products will be untethered for the first time: "You can pick them up, you can discover, put them in your pocket."

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Apple's Regent Street store had just 100 employees when it first opened, but now employs 510 staff – 26 of whom have been there since the very beginning. The workforce now spans over 20 nationalities, with staffers speaking more than 30 languages collectively.

Watch our Facebook Live tour of the new Apple Regent Street store here

Check out more images below:

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Watch our Facebook Live tour of the new Apple Regent Street store here

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What do you think of Apple's new store? Let us know in the comments.

Biggles

October 13, 2016, 9:50 am

You've reviewed a SHOP? Ah, you were paid for this, right?

LeeTronix

October 13, 2016, 12:17 pm

That is funny and most likely the truth..hehehe

jimmy

October 13, 2016, 12:22 pm

probably. as if anyone cares about a shop!! it looks like a complete waste of space to me. A bit like this article!

HMNIW

October 13, 2016, 12:49 pm

Just as a note, this isn't the first EU store with the new design, nor is it the first U.K. store.

Brussels store opened up this time last year as the first EU store with Vintage D, and in the U.K., Brent Cross opened up earlier this year with Vintage D.

jimmy

October 13, 2016, 3:10 pm

you wouldn't expect factually accurate articles here would you?! ha ha

LeeTronix

October 13, 2016, 3:36 pm

The staff all look like Drones that clap on voice command and those tiny school size box chairs what the hell...It just seems so pretentiously fake there is nothing in this store that wants me to visit it especially when it looks like a mental asylum all I need is a white jacket and I would fit right in!!!

Seriously T.R why have you written such a pointless article yet again - and you say Apple to do not pay you to promote them...Ahh Ohhhkay sure...riiight...we believe you - NOT (!)

Sean Keach

October 13, 2016, 3:42 pm

Hi Lee, thanks for commenting.

They did clap. It was very awkward. I wasn't paid by Apple. I even had to buy my own breakfast granola yoghurt pot.

Sean Keach

October 13, 2016, 3:43 pm

Hi HMNIW, thanks for commenting.

I checked up with Apple on this, as we were told that it was the first store in Europe with the redesign.

You're right that the Brussels store was redesigned last year with elements of the new design concept, but the Regent Street store is the first in Europe to feature the full new design.

Hope that helps!

Sean Keach

October 13, 2016, 3:44 pm

Hi jimmy, thanks for commenting. See my reply above!

Sean Keach

October 13, 2016, 3:45 pm

Hi word-merchant, thanks for commenting.

I cannot confirm whether Angela does or does not have feet. We were not made privy to such information, unfortunately. I'll be sure to pass all of your podiatry-related concerns onto my editor, with a view to potentially investigating whether or not any or all Apple executives have feet.

I've never been to Biggleswade, but I hear Matalan has some great deals. Will see what I can do.

LeeTronix

October 13, 2016, 3:46 pm

That is terrible I would send Apple an invoice - and did you have to sit on one those children's box thingies when you had your breakfast! :(

Sean Keach

October 13, 2016, 3:47 pm

Hi David, thanks for commenting!

Just want to clarify that this is news, not a review. And although I was paid by my editor to write this article, I wasn't paid by Apple. In fact, there weren't even refreshments at the event. Just a load of Apple employees clapping and wooping. As you're probably aware, I can't eat or drink claps and woops.

If you want to donate breakfast bars or coffee to TrustedReviews journalists, please get in touch.

Sean Keach

October 13, 2016, 3:49 pm

As an addendum to this, the Brussels store doesn't feature the Boardroom, 'Today at Apple', or the Forum, which are part of the full re-design concept

Sean Keach

October 13, 2016, 3:51 pm

Yes. Fortunately, Apple has designed the boxes with a bum scoop, which made it a little more comfortable.

I would recommend boxes with bum scoops in the future.

HMNIW

October 13, 2016, 4:58 pm

Hey Sean.

Well, I was working in Field Merchandising during the opening of Brussels, and the stores in UAE, and I'd probably disagree.

Vintage D essentially is the Avenues (Accessory bays), the tables, the cieling lights, the stools, the screen, and the Forum area.
Everything else, mainly the trees and the 'Boardroom', aren't actually a part of Vintage D, and are additions done on a store by store basis and depending on things like location.
They're just like the real nice-to-haves for some of the more exceptional stores (Which most likely won't be mall stores).

On the topic of Brussels, it does actually feature the Forum, but on a slightly smaller scale, and whilst I'm unsure what they're currently doing with Today at Apple, they did a number of talks and very interesting workshops with Brussels, including a trial of a photography workshop based on going out into the city with iPhones, and then going back to store after to edit them.

Nevertheless, good to see Regent finally get the love it deserved.

Borkr

October 13, 2016, 8:45 pm

Why are all the staff clapping? What's wrong with them? Did they just hear the news they were going to get holiday pay whilst the store was closed for refurbishment during the summer or something?

No corporate entity should ever look so smug. It's disgusting. Apple should set an example and ban smiling. Inane grinnery and self indulgent, robotic, clapping should be sackable offenses too. I guess the staff are just glad (and relieved) they don't work on the manufacturing side of things.

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