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Rumors of Massive Apple Retail Store for Paris as Virgin Vacates Prime Location

Business Insider points to a report [Google translation] from French newspaper Le Figaro noting that Virgin will be vacating its landmark retail store on Champs-Élysées in Paris and that Apple is one of the primary candidates rumored to be interested in taking the spot.


Interior of Virgin Megastore on Champs-Élysées (Source: Flickr/Ju_li_a)

The entire Virgin store checks in at roughly 75,000 square feet, with nearly 50,000 square feet of it dedicated to the sales floor. Apple's largest flagship retail stores at Regent Street and Covent Garden in London currently offer roughly 25,000 square feet of space, and while Apple could presumably opt to take only a portion of Virgin's space at the Paris location if it is indeed interested, the space certainly would give Apple an opportunity to build by far its largest retail store in a very prominent location.

It is also interesting to note a report from Hardmac claiming that Apple CEO Tim Cook was in Paris earlier this week for unknown reasons. There is obviously no specific evidence tying his rumored presence to the Virgin store vacancy, but those hoping that Apple might pursue the project are welcome to speculate about whether he may have been in town to personally survey the site amid other company business.

Top Rated Comments

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35 months ago
Kinda amusing they could be taking over the space of an industry they helped kill (record stores).
Rating: 13 Votes
35 months ago
I'm surprised that this Virgin store lasted this long.
Rating: 11 Votes
35 months ago
Beautiful location!
Rating: 8 Votes
35 months ago
Apple couldn't fill that location with unique products if it tried. 1 table, 1 iPhone, 3 laptops, and 3 desktops. Not to mention there is practically 0 software sold anymore at Apple stores in the USA. Even the Accessories are barely in the stores.

Now, maybe Apple wants to fill the location with 500 tablets or something...but overall I think it would be a waste of space/money unless the price was superb.

The past 3 Apple stores I've walked into (2 in MA 1 in CT) feel like I could drive a small truck between each table...nice layout, nice colors, very clean...but feels really empty in regards to products.

Apple certainly has the money to pay for the Paris real estate...but I wonder how empty it would feel product-wise.
Rating: 6 Votes
35 months ago
Here is my quarterly post asking for a flagship store in Toronto.
Rating: 6 Votes
35 months ago
It's a beautiful building inside. Very Apple. I used to shop there all the time when I lived in Paris. It's a local landmark and situated in a very prestigious location.
Rating: 5 Votes
35 months ago
Yeah, ALL state side stores suck compared to the ones overseas. The one closest to me is 1/10 that size and smells like feet and dirty laundry :(
Rating: 3 Votes
35 months ago
Apple's minimalist approach would look better in that space anyway. The Virgin layout looks terribly cluttered.
Rating: 3 Votes
35 months ago
Tim Cook was in Paris to :
- attend hearings in a legal case between Apple and French Apple Premium Reseller eBizcuss
- probably discuss Kiosk issues with major newspaper

The Champs-Elysées location sounds a little overrated. I don't think many Parisians shop on the avenue. I don't know any. More likely tourists from Asia and Russia. But there are Apple Stores in Asia now. So 7000 m² for Russian tourists seems a tad big imho.
Rating: 3 Votes
35 months ago
I want one in Ireland :)
Rating: 3 Votes

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