Apple Previews Carnegie Library Store in Washington, D.C. Ahead of Grand Opening on Saturday

Apple today previewed its upcoming retail store at the renovated Carnegie Library at Mount Vernon Square in Washington, D.C., just ahead of its grand opening this Saturday, May 11 at 10:00 a.m. local time.


Apple says the store reflects its "most extensive historic restoration project to date," with the company working alongside architecture firm Foster + Partners and conservation experts to restore the building's distinctive early 20th-century Beaux-Arts style, including its marble facade and atrium.

Apple Carnegie Library features a revitalized grand entry plaza on K Street, a new grand entry staircase on Mount Vernon Place, a double-height atrium with an expansive skylight where Today at Apple sessions will be hosted, and a Genius Grove where the library's book stacks were previously housed.

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To celebrate the opening, Apple will be hosting special Today at Apple sessions at the store between May 18 and June 29. The so-called StoryMakers Festival, led by GoldLink, Nigel Barker, No Kings Collective, and more, will focus on storytelling with photos, music, video, and art and design.

Genius Grove

Deirdre O'Brien, Apple's Senior Vice President of Retail + People:
Whether customers come to explore new products, visit one of our Geniuses or unlock their creativity in a Today at Apple session, Apple Carnegie Library is a place for everyone. We are excited to share this magnificent space with all of our visitors in Washington, D.C., and to provide a home for inspiration for the next generation.
Jony Ive, Apple's Chief Design Officer:
I love the synergy between old and new, the juxtaposition of the historic fabric and contemporary design. In its 'new' phase of life, Apple Carnegie Library will be a way for us to share our ideas and excitement about the products we create, while giving people a sense of community and encouraging and nurturing creativity. It has been a significant honor to restore the Carnegie Library for the people of Washington, D.C.
Carnegie Library also features a new D.C. History Center, which includes the Kiplinger Research Library, three galleries, and a museum store, all owned and operated by the 125-year-old Historical Society of Washington, D.C.


Apple's plans to open a store at Carnegie Library were first revealed back in 2016. Apple CEO Tim Cook recently discussed the store in an interview.

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Apple Retail Employees Vent Frustrations About Stores Becoming Less ‘Shopper-Friendly’ in Recent Years

A new article by Bloomberg has highlighted some customer and employee frustrations with the state of Apple's retail business, particularly in the wake of changes introduced by former retail chief Angela Ahrendts. According to some current and former Apple employees, the retail stores have become more focused on branding than satisfying shoppers, leading to more complaints lodged against some stores.


Ahrendts left Apple last month after first joining the company in 2014, and Apple executive Deirdre O'Brien has succeeded Ahrendts in the retail position. The shake-up happened as Apple's retail business faces more and more issues alongside slowing iPhone sales.

O'Brien is now tasked with revitalizing Apple's retail business, even if that means moving away from the idea of Apple retail stores as social gathering places, which was the initiative spearheaded by Ahrendts. The former retail chief built stores with less clearly defined locations for checking out and speaking to Apple's Geniuses, in an effort to promote the company as a luxury shopping brand amid the launch of the first Apple Watch and its $17,000 Apple Watch Edition models.

According to Bloomberg's sources, this led to customer confusion and was accompanied by other issues, like less skilled employees and the removal of the traditional Genius Bar at some stores.
The overhaul of the Genius Bar has been especially controversial. Customers looking for technical advice or repairs must now check in with an employee, who types their request into an iPad. Then when a Genius is free, he or she must find the customer wherever they happen to be in the store. Ahrendts was determined to get rid of lineups, but now the stores are often crowded with people waiting for their iPhones to be fixed or batteries swapped out.

Apple was “trying to streamline things,” says one employee, “but in the process made things more difficult for some customers.”
One former Apple executive said that O'Brien is looking to borrow from the past and break up Apple stores into more clearly defined sections. These include areas that promote Apple's growing services business, like Apple Music and Apple TV+. A few employees speculated that she will also bring back the original Genius Bar.

To help boost sales in the interim, Apple has begun offering discounts on iPhones, cheap financing, trade-in offers, and more. These offers were seen around the world, including specific promotions in Australia and China, with Apple typically e-mailing customers about the limited-time discounts. In the United States, Apple even updated its website to promote a monthly payment option for iPhone XR and XS trade-ups.

The first Apple retail store that will open under O'Brien will be the Carnegie Library location in Washington, D.C. on May 11. As of now, Apple still sees its stores as communal gathering places. According to CEO Tim Cook, "We should probably come up with a name other than 'store,' because it's more of a place for the community to use in a much broader way."

Visit Bloomberg to read the full article: "How the Apple Store Lost Its Luster".

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Apple CEO Tim Cook Discusses Apple’s Revamped Carnegie Library Store in Washington, D.C.

Apple is set to open a new retail store at the revamped Carnegie Library in Washington, D.C. on Saturday, May 11, and ahead of the grand opening, Apple CEO Tim Cook and Apple retail leader Deirdre O'Brien did an interview with The Washington Post to discuss the new flagship location.

Work on the Carnegie Library Apple Store kicked off two years ago, and Apple has spent an estimated $30 million on the project. $7 million of that went towards facade restoration, $300,000 went to restoring the stair wells, and $2 million was spent on landscaping and site work. Apple is also paying $700,000 per year for the next 10 years to lease the space.


According to Cook, restoring Carnegie Library to its original design standards became the "most historic, ambitious restoration by far, in the world." Apple believes projects like this help showcase "Today at Apple" services and classes, though the company's aim is to get customers to further associate Apple with creativity.
"Our roots are in education and creativity," Cook said. "You think about where the company started from and Steve and the team at the time were very focused on providing people tools that allowed them to do incredible things."

"We've been serving the creative community as a company since the founding of the company, and the truth is everyone should be a part of the creative community," Cook added, "so this is our way to democratize it."
Like other remodeled Apple Stores, Carnegie Library will use the town square design with dedicated sections for the Genius Grove, Today at Apple sessions, and shopping for retail products. Buying something, says Cook is "probably one of the least done things" in an Apple retail location.

People come in to look at new products, and get help with the products that they already own. Apple sees its retail locations as communities rather than standard stores.
"We should probably come up with a name other than 'store,' " he said, "because it's more of a place for the community to use in a much broader way."
The Carnegie Library store will open at 10:00 a.m. local time on May 11, and Apple has six weeks of programs from local artists planned in celebration of the launch.


Apple will be sharing the space with the Historical Society of Washington D.C., which plans to open up a D.C. History Center.

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Apple Store at Renewed Carnegie Library in Washington, D.C. Opens May 11

Apple today announced that it is opening a retail store at the renewed Carnegie Library in Washington, D.C. on Saturday, May 11, as noted by 9to5Mac. The grand opening will take place at 10:00 a.m. local time.


The store opening will follow months of renovations to Carnegie Library led by Apple, architecture firms Foster + Partners and Beyer Blinder Belle, and the Historical Society of Washington, D.C. Apple's store is expected to have a "subtle" presence that respects the historic integrity of the building.

"Together, let's create the next chapter," says Apple. "Inspired by the rich history of Carnegie Library, we are reimagining Apple Carnegie Library as a brand-new space to learn. Where everyone is welcome to come and discover all kinds of creativity, connect with new ideas, and share their stories."


To celebrate the grand opening, Apple will be hosting special Today at Apple sessions at the store between May 18 and June 29. The so-called StoryMakers Festival, led by GoldLink, Nigel Barker, No Kings Collective, and more, will focus on storytelling with photos, music, video, and art and design.

Apple's plans to open a store at Carnegie Library were first revealed back in 2016. The 116-year-old building is located across the street from the Washington Convention Center in Mount Vernon Square in Downtown Washington, D.C.

Apple operates over 500 retail stores worldwide.

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Apple to Open Retail Store in London’s Knightsbridge Estate

Apple has agreed to open a new 20,000-square-foot retail store in the heart of Knightsbridge, one of London's most luxurious shopping areas, according to local media.

Proposed development in Knightsbridge, London (Image via Chelsfield)

Citing property sources, The Evening Standard reports that Apple has signed a deal with Chelsfield, the property asset manager overseeing a makeover of The Knightsbridge Estate, to secure retail lettings between high-end department stores Harrods and Harvey Nichols.

The transformation of The Estate as a whole is expected to deliver a mix of new "world-class" retail accommodation, including six flagship stores, 66,000 square feet of Grade A offices, 35 rental apartments around an internal courtyard garden, and a rooftop restaurant.

The landmark development is currently surrounded by a public artwork installation called "The Knights of Knightsbridge" to conceal construction.

Apple has five retail locations in the English capital, including flagship stores Regent Street and Covent Garden, which reopened late last year following a three-month renovation.

(Thanks, Tobias!)

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Apple Cancels Federation Square Store in Australia After Demolition Plans Were Denied

Apple has shelved plans to build a new flagship Apple Store at the Federation Square shopping center in Melbourne, Australia after heritage authorities refused an application to demolish the Yarra Building that's already on the site.

According to The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age Heritage Victoria today said that the Yarra Building could not be torn down as it would result in an "unacceptable and irreversible detrimental impact on the cultural heritage significance of Federation Square." Apple in response said that it would not proceed with plans to build the store.

The retail store Apple planned to build at Federation Square after design revisions

An Apple spokesperson told The Age that Apple was disappointed it would no longer be able to build a retail store at Federation Square. "We remain committed to serving our customers in Melbourne and across Australia," said the spokesperson.

Apple first announced plans to build an Apple retail location at Federation Square in December 2017, with the company planning to make it an "Apple Global Flagship Store" that would have been Apple's most significant store in the Southern Hemisphere, offering workshops, classes, and live music events.

Apple's plans for the store called for the demolition of the Yarra Building, a move that ultimately received backlash from the Melbourne City Council and Melbourne locals unhappy with the plan to give public space to a corporation.

The original Federation Square design featured a pagoda-style building that locals also disliked, referring to it as a "Pizza Hut Pagoda." Apple in July 2018 submitted revised blueprints for the store with an updated design created after workshops with Federation Square management, the Victorian Government, and the Melbourne City Council, but permission was still required to remove the Yarra Building.

The Yarra Building, via The Sydney Morning Herald

Federation Square management in December applied to Heritage Victoria for a permit that would allow the Yarra Building to be torn down so Apple could proceed with the building of the store, but that application was denied after heritage authorities received thousands of objections from Melbourne locals.

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Apple Store Pickup Now Available for New iPad Mini and iPad Air

Apple today activated in-store pickup for its new iPad mini and iPad Air models in the United States, Canada, Australia, and select other countries.


This feature enables customers to purchase a new iPad on Apple.com and pick it up at a nearby Apple Store at a designated time. The tool can also be used to monitor inventory of the new iPads at Apple Stores based on zip or postal code, with both models currently available for pickup today at many locations.

To view in-store inventory, head to the iPad mini or iPad Air product pages, choose a color and other options, and select "see availability in other stores." To place an order for in-store pickup, proceed with the checkout process as usual and it will be presented as an option along with standard delivery.

The new iPad mini and iPad Air are very similar. Both tablets feature Apple's recent A12 Bionic chip, Retina displays with True Tone, first-generation Apple Pencil support, 64GB or 256GB storage, Touch ID, up to 10 hours of battery life, an 8-megapixel rear camera, two speakers, and optional Gigabit-class LTE.

The new iPad mini's only notable differences versus the new 10.5-inch iPad Air are its smaller 7.9-inch screen and lack of Smart Keyboard compatibility. The new iPad mini also has a lower starting price of $399 versus $499 for the new iPad Air.

Apple is currently quoting an April 15-17 delivery estimate for standard ship-to-home orders, so in-store pickup looks to be a quicker option.

The new AirPods are also available for Apple Store pickup.

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Two Beautiful New Apple Stores Expected to Open Soon in Singapore

Apple's first and only retail store in Singapore opened at the Knightsbridge Mall shopping complex on Orchard Road in 2017. Now, a report says the iPhone maker plans to open two additional stores in the island country later this year.

A render of Jewel Changi Airport

The Straits Times reports that one of Apple's new stores will open at Jewel Changi Airport within Singapore's main airport. The tourist destination, slated to open April 17, will feature more than 280 shops amid a five-story terraced garden with a 40-meter-tall waterfall cascading from a vaulted glass roof.


The other new store is said to open at the Marina Bay Sands resort next to Singapore's central business district. The dome-shaped store will be situated over water, connected to the luxurious resort with a walkway nestled amid palm trees. The site was previously occupied by night club Avalon.

An aerial view of Marina Bay Sands via Wayfarer, highlighted with reported location of Apple's new store

Apple is believed to be behind the construction of this dome-like structure for its Marina Bay Sands store

Both locations look like they will be very unique additions to Apple's chain of over 500 stores around the world, in line with the company's more ambitious store designs in recent years. The report claims the new stores will open in the "coming months," but Apple has yet to announce any grand opening dates.

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Apple Store App Gains Revamped Sessions Tab, Easier Access to Trade-In Values

Apple today updated its Apple Store app to version 5.3, introducing a redesigned Sessions tab at the bottom of the app that houses dozens of new Today at Apple sessions that Apple users can sign up to attend.

Apple says that it's also now easier to check the trade-in values of your devices when using the Apple Store app.


You'll see trade-in options when purchasing a new iPhone, iPad, Mac, or Apple Watch, and Apple will give you a list of your current devices where you're signed in with your Apple ID and their trade-in value.

You can tap one, go through Apple's status checklist, and then finish the trade-in process right when checking out.

The splash screen when starting the app after installing the new update also says that returns have been streamlined with options to track the progress of your order, initiate a return, or print a return label directly from the Apple Store app.

The Apple Store app can be downloaded from the App Store for free. [Direct Link]


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Apple Store in Southern California Warning Customers About Fraudulent Phone Calls

Apple is warning customers who receive unsolicited phone calls claiming to be from the Apple Store at The Americana at Brand shopping complex in Glendale, California, as fraudsters appear to be posing as representatives of the store as part of a phishing scheme aimed at stealing customer information.


The following automated message plays when calling Apple The Americana:
Apple is aware that some customers are receiving unsolicited calls claiming to be from this Apple Store. If you receive an unsolicited call, you should not provide any information to the callers. For more information on cybercrime and ways to protect your computer, visit www.fbi.gov/investigate/cyber. Also, if you feel you have been a victim of fraud, please contact your local police. If you would like help changing your Apple ID password, please visit support.apple.com.
Apple did not immediately respond to our question asking if any customer information has been compromised, but it did point us to a previous instance of this warning at its River Park Square store in Spokane, Washington in October 2017.

In that case, the local CBS affiliate KREM 2 reported that customers in Spokane received phone calls from a number that appeared to be the local Apple Store, advising they talk to a "support advisor" who informed customers about a false "breach in cloud security" in an attempt to steal their information.

Our understanding is that Apple temporarily adds this automated message to stores associated with an increase in fraudulent behavior in an effort to protect customers. Apple is far from the only company affected by phishing schemes and offers several tips on how to avoid being victimized.

Apple advises customers who receive an unsolicited call from someone claiming to be from Apple to hang up and contact Apple directly.

This is an opportune moment to remind everyone that phishing attacks can also be in the form of emails, so be very careful when you receive an email that claims to be from Apple, especially if prompted to provide your password or other information. Be sure to contact Apple if you are uncertain about any email.

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