Apple has 421 retail stores in 14 countries and each and every single one of them is unique in its own way. The first Apple Store was designed by Millard Drexler, former CEO of Gap, and opened in 1999. It immediately drew attention of media and consumers as it stood out in terms of innovative marketing and retailing environment. Just Apple products themselves, Apple Stores are designed with incredible attention to detail and put the content - iPhones, iPods, iPads, Macs, and accessories - first to deliver the best shopping experience possible.
In addition to hundreds of stores inside popular shopping malls, Apple has a few "flagship" stores in high-profile locations. While the regular ones are usually simple and held on a single storey, flagship outlets feature multiple levels and iconic glass staircases as well as distinctive construction. Since they all are the perfect examples of how amazing modern architecture can be, we've rounded up a short list of the most beautiful Apple Stores in the world. Enjoy!
Fifth Avenue, New York
Entrance to Apple's flagship store in New York is a massive cube made of glass. Walk inside and down the spiral staircase and you'll see a large hall filled with countless number of Apple devices ready to fiddle with.
Grand Central, New York
You'd probably never think of an electronics store inside a train station, but Apple did and managed to make it look as though it has always been there. Unobtrusive and modest, the store in Grand Central barely suggests a visit, yet pulls you in every time you pass it. Illuminated screens of multiple devices and glowing Apple logo are the only hints that the store is not a temporary art exhibition or an integral part of the terminal.
Arguably modest on the outside and stunningly spacious on the inside, Opéra Store in France preserves original architecture and feel of the location, and adds a touch of Apple's vibe.
As if it was an elevator to another dimension, tall glass cylinder at the entrance to Apple's store in Pudong, Shanghai, blends into the surroundings and takes customers down to the circle-shaped product showcase hall.
Interesting as both a store and an example of modern architecture, the store in Sanlitun, Bejing, consists of two parts. While the main two-level structure designed for consumers is made of completely transparent glass, the giant gray box placed upon it draws attention thanks to a large Apple logo glowing brightly in the dark. The store is simplistic and minimalistic and makes you want to stop and stare. Had you done that, you'd probably want to walk in and take a look around.