Apple's Orchard Road outlet might just be their best store yet

PHOTO: Vulcan Post

The long-guarded secret that is Apple Orchard Road will finally open its doors to the public this Saturday at 10am.

For the longest time, everyone has been speculating about when it will open, and after much teasing, the public can finally catch a glimpse from the outside of its massive glass storefront.

Apple store at Orchard Road opens

  • Apple Orchard Road opened its doors to the public at 10am on Saturday (May 27).
  • Opening day on May 27 at the newly opened Apple Orchard Road store.
  • Peter Xiang, 25, from Macau, was first in the queue.
  • Mr Peter Xu was queuing since 8pm the day before (May 26).
  • Hundreds of people waited outside Apple's first store in Southeast Asia in Singapore, which opened on May 27.
  • Customers waiting to enter the Apple store.
  • The two-floor Apple store at Knightsbridge mall.
  • A visitor poses with a souvenir t-shirt given away at the city-state's first Apple Store on its opening day at Orchard Road.
  • People queue outside the Apple store in the Orchard shopping district on its opening day in Singapore on May 27, 2017.
  • A girl tries an iPhone inside the Apple store in the Orchard shopping district on its opening day in Singapore on May 27, 2017.
  • People look at the display of merchandise inside the Apple store in the Orchard shopping district on its opening day in Singapore on May 27, 2017.
  • Today at Apple in "The Forum".
  • The "boardroom", where Apple executives will hold their meetings.
  • Apple's leather and silicone cases for the iPhone 7 .
  • The new 2016 Macbook Pros on display.
  • It will be the first Apple retail store in Southeast Asia.
  • The Apple store will open its doors to customers this Saturday on May 27.
  • It features an all-glass entrance - a signature of Apple stores around the world.
  • Last night (May 21), the white wallpapers with the "Apple loves little red dot" icons, which covered the store front for weeks, was removed for the first time.
  • The wide space on the second floor might be used for Apple-related events like Today at Apple.
  • "Today at Apple" is an in-store programme where Singaporean creatives will be conducting free, hands-on sessions on topics like coding or how to sketch and paint with iPad.
  • Apple employees undergoing a briefing, possibly in preparation for opening day on May 27.
  • Apple's latest offerings on display.
  • On the left, you can see iMacs on display while the back of the store features third-party products as well as posters of Apple Watch Series 2.

Apple Orchard Road Is Finally Here

Come Saturday, Apple Orchard Road will join the nearly 500 Apple stores worldwide to welcome more than a million visitors a day.

While it may be a newcomer as a store, the staff running it from Day 1 will be anything but.

Photo: Vulcan Post

25 per cent of the 237 employees who will be opening Apple Orchard Road are Apple employees who transitioned from their call centres or other parts of the company.

This means that the team is the most seasoned to have ever opened an Apple store in a new country.

So you can be sure that there are highly-trained experts in Apple products who are ready to answer deep technical questions, or just help you discover a new creative passion.

As for the store itself, the first thing you will be greeted by is the massive glass facade - 36.576m (120 feet) long and 14m (46 feet) tall.

Photo: Vulcan Post

Having painstakingly made the glass panels as clear as possible, their sole aim is to not make it seem like a barrier that keeps people out.

This also presented an opportunity to create a 7.62m (25 foot) canopy to shelter visitors from the tropical sunlight and also the rain.

Walking into the store, you will also be greeted with trees on each floor of the store which Apple calls "The Grove".

Photo: Vulcan Post

Speaking of floors, the 1st and 2nd floor of the store is connected by two curved Castania stone staircases at either side of the store which draws inspiration from Apple Park.

The ground floor is where you expect the main store to be.

Here, you can try each and every product Apple has today to your heart's content.

Payment terminals are cleverly hidden within the display tables, so you will only see them magically appear when you are ready for a purchase.

Photo: Vulcan Post

Today At Apple Comes To Singapore

Up the stairs is where you will find "The Forum", a vast open mezzanine level with seats and tables scattered around with potted trees at the side.

This is where the Today at Apple programme will be conducted, and on days where there isn't an activity, visitors can just chill out there.

Today at Apple will be bringing more than 60 new (and free) hands-on sessions to the store, each centred around topics that visitors are passionate about.

Photo: Vulcan Post

Some of the more popular topics mentioned include photography, and art and design; which will be led by store staff as well as the Red Dot Heroes.

Also tucked away in the corner is a place they call "The Boardroom".

This is where partners (and potential partners) can set up a meeting with Apple to discuss opportunities they can work together on.

Photo: Vulcan Post

At the opening of the Apple Dubai Mall, Apple's senior vice president of Retail Angela Ahrendts mentioned that the company sees their stores as today's version of a town hall.

"We view our stores as a modern-day town square, where visitors come to shop, be inspired, learn or connect with others in their community."

This is evident when you walk into any Apple Store in the world, because more than just a showroom, it's an experience you can partake in.

Photo: Vulcan Post

You can chat with fellow Apple enthusiasts, gain in depth knowledge from in-store experts, and learn how to effectively utilise your new purchase through workshops by professionals using the very same equipment.

Singaporeans will soon have an Apple Store to call their own soon, and you can be sure the Apple faithful will be crowding at its doors on opening day.

Apple Orchard Road

270 Orchard Road

Singapore, 238857

Tel: 1800 699 2824

Opening hours: (from Saturday 27 May) Mon - Sun: 10:00 am - 10:00 pm

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