Revamped Apple Sanlitun Store Opens in Beijing
Apple today announced that the redesigned Apple Sanlitun store is opening for customers. Apple Sanlitun, located in the Taikoo Li Sanlitun mall in Beijing, was Apple's first store in China.
The original store opened up in 2008, but Apple is replacing it with a new flagship store that's been under construction for several months. The updated store is adjacent to the original store, but it's twice the size.
According to Apple, the redesigned store features many of the modern updates that Apple has been bringing to its retail locations, such as a Forum for Today at Apple sessions, a Viewing Gallery that overlooks the outdoor square, and a Boardroom where local businesses and entrepreneurs can get advice.
"This store sets a new standard for Apple Retail in China and we're thrilled to build on our history in Beijing," said Deirdre O'Brien, Apple's senior vice president of Retail + People. "We look forward to operating Apple Sanlitun, and all of our stores around the world, with the health and safety of our customers and teams as our top priority."
There are 33-foot glass panels at the front of the store, signature staircases on both sides, Padang Light stone flooring sourced from the Shandong province, and Sophora japonica trees, which are the official tree of Beijing.
Apple Sanlitun features Apple's first integrated solar array built into a retail store in China, and it allows the location to run on renewable energy like the rest of Apple's facilities worldwide.
Apple Sanlitun is opening at 10:00 a.m. CST, and Apple is implementing safety measures like temperature checks, social distancing, and masks.
Top Rated Comments
(1) Most of the Apple stores in the US are older. The foreign stores in these articles are the newest stores, and benefit from Apple's ever-improving and and increasingly bold design aesthetic. Also, perhaps because of how commerical retain space is configured in this country, fewer of the US Apple stores are stand-alone creations; and you need a store to be stand-alone to get creative with the achitecture. When Apple has constructed new flagship US stand-alone stores, it has tried to be bold with the design, such as the glass cube store in Manhattan. And remember that this store is from 2016:
(2) The stores you see in articles about new Apple stores are not the average foreign Apple store, but the best of the best.
(3) Apple probably pays particular attention to these flagship foreign stores, since these act as "brand ambassadors". In the US, people are more used to Apple, so the design of the stores, while important, has less influence.
There may be some truth to that, but I don't think that's necessarily the primary driver. Consider, for instance, the Apple store in Opera, Paris, which is in a high-income area, yet is stunning. Indeed, I would say that, while the Sanlitun store is lovely (particularly its exterior), the Opera store's interior is closer to what I would describe as "boutique":
That's not quite true as Apple has been revamping US stores too. Otherwise, China is Apple's largest growth market and similar to other O/S stores, they don't regularly get looted as for the US stores. So these are secure investments for Apple in their operation.