Apple previews the redesigned Fifth Avenue store: ‘the cube is back’

The iconic Apple Store on Fifth Avenue in New York City has been undergoing a redesign for quite some time. But, as Apple announced back at its “by innovation only” event, the reopening will happen on Friday, September 20.

That coincides with the launch of Apple’s newest iPhone models, the iPhone 11 and iPhone 11 Pro. But the store reopening is big news all by itself, and today Apple published a press release giving a preview of the changes made to the legendary physical retail space.

Apple today previewed the new Apple Fifth Avenue, an entirely reimagined space beneath one of New York City’s most recognized landmarks. With its distinctive, luminous glass cube rising above a newly designed public plaza, Apple Fifth Avenue is ready to resume its place at the heart of one of the world’s most vibrant creative communities.

Apple says the new Fifth Avenue store is “nearly double” the size of the original store, offering up more natural light and higher ceilings. There will be a new Forum space, which will offer daily Today At Apple programs. The space for Geniuses has doubled in size as well.

Our customers are at the center of everything we do, and Apple Fifth Avenue is for them, to inspire them, and to provide the very best place to discover our newest products,” said Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO. “It’s unique among Apple stores, and today it returns even more welcoming, and even more beautiful than ever. We’re so proud to be a part of this great city where so much happens every day.

Since its opening in 2006 –with Steve Jobs in attendance– the Fifth Avenue store has seen over 57 million visitors. Apple says that’s more annually than even the Statue of Liberty or the Empire State Building.

The redesigned plaza is lined by 28 honey locust trees bordered with linear fountains providing a welcome and quiet setting to gather and sit. At the center stands the dramatic 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 is a remarkable design achievement with 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 says the new, redesigned Fifth Avenue store will be staffed by 900 employees that speak over 30 languages. And, of course, the new store will offer the Apple Watch Studio experience, letting potential Apple Watch Series 5 customers customize their smartwatch before they buy.

We couldn’t be more excited and more ready to welcome customers back to Apple Fifth Avenue,” said Deirdre O’Brien, Apple’s senior vice president of Retail + People. “Not only is the new space and experience absolutely inspiring, our amazing retail Geniuses, Creative Pros and Specialists have worked so hard preparing for this day. Who they are, and the talents they bring, are so essential to the excellence we strive for at Apple.

The new Fifth Avenue Apple Store experience will open on Friday, September 20, at 8:00 am local time.