Apple Stores around the world traditionally have its presence in first world countries, and Singapore should be no exception. It took a while, but it’s finally here. Before this, the nearest Apple Stores in the region would probably be the ones in Hong Kong. I remember a few years back when I visited the island, one of the top things in my itinerary was to drop by an Apple Store; never mind skipping Disneyland. And that is precisely because Apple Stores have become more than just stores, but iconic landmarks usually placed at the center of a metropolis. From its iconic Fifth Avenue in the heart of New York City, to the Ginza store in Tokyo – and now, Singapore Orchard Road.
Early on, the opening of the Apple Store in Singapore faced a few construction issues that resulted to delays from the original launch dates. But hurdles were apparently soon cleared the way and now the store finally unveiled, and in spectacular fashion at that. On early morning of Saturday, 27th of May, a significant number of people queued outside the store. Finally when the doors opened at approximately 10am (SG time GMT+8), customers were greeted by Apple’s very own Angela Ahrendts (Apple’s senior vice president of Retail), and the store’s 237 employees.
Being the first Apple retail store in Southeast Asia, Apple Orchard Road has been in the media limelight over the past few weeks leading up to the store opening. As with Apple’s normal practice, details about the store remained in secret up until May, when Apple decided to put up a mural in front of the store that displayed large “Apple Loves Singapore” artwork in various places. Looking closer, the artwork actually represented different “Creative Pros” who will now help run Apple Orchard Road’s “Today at Apple” programs.
Apple Orchard Road is the newest step in the company’s campaign to abstain from more traditional retail practices where the shop’s only purpose is to sell product. In contrast, the new campaign aims to encourage customers to be inspired by the products through “Today at Apple”.