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Customers line up for grand opening of Apple's Grand Central store

post #1 of 113
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Friday's grand opening of the new Apple Store in New York's Grand Central Terminal drew a crowd of customers who lined up to be among the first to shop at the massive new retail location [updated with more pictures].

Early Friday morning, a line of about 40 people had already formed ahead of the grand opening of the store at 10 a.m. Those waiting in line stayed in a side corridor to ensure the crowd didn't get in the way of commuters using the terminal for travel.

Those at the very front of the line stayed overnight in sleeping bags to make sure they would be the first into the new retail location. Apple employees also handed out bottles of Smartwater to those in line to make sure they were hydrated.

In addition to the traditional media, an Apple camera crew was also on hand to interview those waiting in line. Wearing red t-shirts with the Apple logo on the chest, the employees spoke with customers who awaited the grand opening Friday morning.

Apple offered a first look at the store earlier this week ahead of the official opening. The open area looks down on the main concourse of Grand Central Terminal with chandeliers overhead, featuring the company's signature maple woods tables showcasing its products.



The entranceway to the store features a large, glowing Apple logo on the east balcony. Stairs to the store are above the entrance to tracks 100 through 117 and the dining concourse.

The 23,000-square-foot store will be one of Apple's largest retail locations in the world. It sits in a prime location in Grand Central Terminal, though which an estimated 700,000 people pass every day.



The Grand Central Apple Store is staffed by 315 employees and features Apple's largest Personal Setup area in the world. It also features two Genius Bars.



Following today's grand opening, normal hours for the store will be 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Saturdays, and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sundays. Thanks to AppleInsider reader Ryan for the details and pictures from Friday morning's event.

Update: Below, see more pictures of the massive crowd that formed after the store finally opened at 10 a.m.





Update 2: Apple has released its own photos of the store opening.



post #2 of 113
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Friday's grand opening of the new Apple Store in New York's Grand Central Terminal drew a crowd of customers who lined up to be among the first to shop at the massive new retail location.


They are the elite Apple fans. This will be a story that gets retold to the grandchildren on every family holiday.


</sarcasm>


Sounds like a bunch of weirdos to me...
post #3 of 113
Amazing to think that in Grand Central, there is somewhere that is actually out of the way.
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post #4 of 113
Quote:
Originally Posted by ConradJoe View Post

Looks like a bunch of weirdos to me...

Why? They look pretty normal and happy to my eyes.
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post #5 of 113
Now if Apple could only entice just 1% of those commuters on a daily basis to buy products from the GCT retail store, Apple could really produce a serious halo for Apple products.
post #6 of 113
Quote:
Originally Posted by Xian Zhu Xuande View Post

Why? They look pretty normal and happy to my eyes.

Agreed. If that picture invokes "weirdos" in someone's mind I'd question that person's frame of reference. Looks like a modern day Norman Rockwell scene to me.
post #7 of 113
Quote:
Originally Posted by Xian Zhu Xuande View Post

Why? They look pretty normal and happy to my eyes.

They do look look normal and happy, don't they? That's why ConradJoe finds them weird.
post #8 of 113
This store is massive. I am going to visit this store on my trip to NYC this christmas break.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Xian Zhu Xuande View Post

Why? They look pretty normal and happy to my eyes.

Don't feed the trolls.
post #9 of 113
Quote:
Originally Posted by malax View Post

Agreed. If that picture invokes "weirdos" in someone's mind I'd question that person's frame of reference. Looks like a modern day Norman Rockwell scene to me.

He's just acting like a cynical prick as unusual. Personally, I don't get the desire to first into a new store but I certainly don't think they are abnormal queers the way ConradJoe does.

If there was a new product launching that I felt would be hard to get ahold of I;d wait in a line. From bread to the iPad to simply having to use the bathroom lines serve their purpose.

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post #10 of 113
I guess samsung making fun of apple fan didn't work. These guys are lining up just to get in the store, in a city that already has many stores.
post #11 of 113
Looks like a special family outing to Manhattan to me. Mom lets the Apple nerd kids skip school, headed in real early for a nice day in the city. Those two will be wearing the T shirts to school Monday, maybe a holiday gift in there somewhere. Remember that B&H closes at 2 on Friday for Shabbat. Hit the new Cube up on 5th ( looks great, Steve would have loved it) Get a dirty water dog in between. Dinner down on 9th, maybe. Perfect family day in the city. I miss my kids being that age.
post #12 of 113
Quote:
Originally Posted by 801 View Post

Looks like a special family outing to Manhattan to me... I miss my kids being that age.

I do too (my kids that is ).

All the best.
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post #13 of 113
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

...I certainly don't think they are abnormal queers the way ConradJoe does.


For all his trollish-ness, I don't think ConradJoe ever said anything as offensive as this? I'm hoping this is an unfortunate auto-correct mistake.
post #14 of 113
Quote:
Originally Posted by JupiterOne View Post


For all his trollish-ness, I don't think ConradJoe ever said anything as offensive as this? I'm hoping this is an unfortunate auto-correct mistake.

I doubt that SolipsismX was using "queer" in the most recent sense, maybe an earlier usage where it can sub for CJ's "weirdo." Anyway, ConradJoe deserves to be mistranslated in any way possible, because he's just doing his despicable best to Gizmodo-fy the thread. For money, I'm convinced, because he spends all day at it, every day.

Edit: On topic, if I were in New York, I'd be there to see the show. Can't imagine anything more entertaining, and it has a bit of historical resonance. I mean, this ain't the Trailways bus station. First time I was there was in the 1950s with my dad. He loved the place, the way an out-of-towner always likes the big metropolitan train station. He would have flipped out to see this revival by virtue of a new generation of technology.
post #15 of 113
Quote:
Originally Posted by JupiterOne View Post


For all his trollish-ness, I don't think ConradJoe ever said anything as offensive as this? I'm hoping this is an unfortunate auto-correct mistake.

He called them weirdos. He implied they were abnormal and queer. These are all synonyms. Nothing in ConradJoe's hateful comment eluded to calling them homosexuals, nor does mine. Words do have multiple meaning so the context it's used is important to understand its meaning.

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"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

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post #16 of 113
The store is beautiful. The launch very well executed. Congrats to the Apple team. Steve would be proud!

Windows survivor - after a long, epic and painful struggle. Very long AAPL

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post #17 of 113
That has to be annoying for those commuting through GCT this morning.

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"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

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"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

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post #18 of 113
Quote:
Originally Posted by Flaneur View Post

They do look look normal and happy, don't they? That's why ConradJoe finds them weird.

I guess it all depends where his (Conradjoe's) head is.

Got to give him credit though. He never has to buy Kleenex.
post #19 of 113
I hope Samsung doesn't see this.
post #20 of 113
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

That has to be annoying for those commuting through GCT this morning. [IMG]Crowds at GC[/IMG]

But how amazing is that? All the products are available is several near by Apple stores yet crowds turn up for the unveiling of a new store. It is architecturally interesting, I agree, but this kind of enthusiasm must be the envy of the entire retail world. Impressive.
post #21 of 113
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

He called them weirdos. He implied they were abnormal and queer. These are all synonyms. Nothing in ConradJoe's hateful comment eluded to calling them homosexuals, nor does mine. Words do have multiple meaning so the context it's used is important to understand its meaning.

I understand the meaning of the word queer when used as an adjective, "Those people look queer", meaning odd or strange. But when used as a noun, "They are abnormal queers", it means a homosexual man.
post #22 of 113
Wow! Looks fan-tastic! There will be those that opine that it appears that the faithful are in "church". So be it.

I found this article at ArsTechnica this morning to be the all to sad polar opposite:

Microsoft brings the Genius Bar to the Web with Answer Desk
Quote:
By Peter Bright | Published about 15 hours ago

Microsoft has quietly launched a new service to help Windows and Office users get the most out of their PCs. Answer Desk is an online version of the Answer Desks found in Microsoft's retail stores, which are in turn modeled on Apple's successful Genius Bars, providing users with personalized consulting on their computer problems.

What a wild interpretation of what Apple's Genius Bars really ARE! ~~
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post #23 of 113
So what is the actual incentive of waiting outside for the store opening? Are there any purchase incentives at all? Giveaways?
post #24 of 113
Quote:
Originally Posted by Neo42 View Post

So what is the actual incentive of waiting outside for the store opening? Are there any purchase incentives at all? Giveaways?

Probably not. That is the genius of the Apple brand that other retailers just can't wrap their head around, or get right.

Insanely amazing, huh?
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post #25 of 113
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Originally Posted by Postulant View Post

I hope Samsung doesn't see this.

No you don't!
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post #26 of 113
Quote:
Originally Posted by ConradJoe View Post


They are the elite Apple fans. This will be a story that gets retold to the grandchildren on every family holiday.


</sarcasm>


Looks like a bunch of weirdos to me...

Dude. You have an "enemies list." I imagine you plotting with Ehrlichman and Haldeman in the White House every time I see your signature. And they're the wierdos?
post #27 of 113
Quote:
Originally Posted by Neo42 View Post

So what is the actual incentive of waiting outside for the store opening? Are there any purchase incentives at all? Giveaways?

Just enthusiasm, I guess. Maybe there are freebies expected but people love to visit Apple stores even if they are not buying and this one looks to be very special GCS is an amazing place with or without an Apple store.
post #28 of 113
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

That has to be annoying for those commuting through GCT this morning.

That shot has shortened the auditorium considerably! The crowds are all the more remarkable given the size of the main concourse!
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post #29 of 113
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

lines serve their purpose.

Oh. OK. I guess that makes sense.
post #30 of 113
Quote:
Originally Posted by JupiterOne View Post

I understand the meaning of the word queer when used as an adjective, "Those people look queer", meaning odd or strange. But when used as a noun, "They are abnormal queers", it means a homosexual man.

Queer can mean homosexual when used as an adjective or noun. My context does not imply any such sense of having an attraction to the same sex.

"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

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post #31 of 113
Quote:
Originally Posted by JupiterOne View Post


For all his trollish-ness, I don't think ConradJoe ever said anything as offensive as this?


It doesn't matter what I say. All that matters is what I am prejudged as likely to have said.

Kind of like if a person of color were to make a good point in the old South - the content doesn't matter; the locals are welcome to abuse him no matter what.


post #32 of 113
Quote:
Originally Posted by Flaneur View Post

ConradJoe deserves to be mistranslated in any way possible,

See? I'm a Nigger. So I deserve it.

post #33 of 113
While I understand they would not all be on shift at once except perhaps for major launches the idea of having 300+ people waiting to serve you in a a one room store is pretty intense.

The comment above about 1% per day. of 700,000 that is 7,000 a day. 14hr open time. 500 an hour. 125 per 15min. Seems plausible given the staff. I suppose the average spend would be hmm hmm hmm maybe $100. 50,000 an hour, 700,000 a day. Maybe $5million a week.

Seems plausible, accounting that not all 7,000 customer would be buying, maybe genius or training to give $100 average spend.

Fark, turnover of about 250million a year. So about 75 mill after COG landed, 30mil in staff, outgoings 20. 25mil clear. 10% margin.

Hmm, pretty thin. Maybe it is a little higher. Maybe it is 20% due to higher avg spend or bit better COG landed margin

Still, it is a pretty good billboard that reaches 700,000 people a day, pays its way and makes a margin.
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post #34 of 113
Quote:
Originally Posted by Neo42 View Post

So what is the actual incentive of waiting outside for the store opening? Are there any purchase incentives at all? Giveaways?

Usually Apple gives away T shirts to the first hundred customers or so. They have the name of the shop on them. Check ebay for examples. Great Holiday gifts for the intelligentsia. Or for bragging rights for a pair of kids.
post #35 of 113
Quote:
Originally Posted by shadash View Post

Dude. You have an "enemies list." I imagine you plotting with Ehrlichman and Haldeman in the White House every time I see your signature.

They are not my enemies.

But the Nixonesque reference is quite correct.

Often I use complex or obscure references that go over most people's heads. I'm glad that somebody "gets it".
post #36 of 113
Quote:
Originally Posted by cy_starkman View Post

While I understand they would not all be on shift at once except perhaps for major launches the idea of having 300+ people waiting to serve you in a a one room store is pretty intense.

The comment above about 1% per day. of 700,000 that is 7,000 a day. 14hr open time. 500 an hour. 125 per 15min. Seems plausible given the staff. I suppose the average spend would be hmm hmm hmm maybe $100. 50,000 an hour, 700,000 a day. Maybe $5million a week.

Seems plausible, accounting that not all 7,000 customer would be buying, maybe genius or training to give $100 average spend.

Fark, turnover of about 250million a year. So about 75 mill after COG landed, 30mil in staff, outgoings 20. 25mil clear. 10% margin.

Hmm, pretty thin. Maybe it is a little higher. Maybe it is 20% due to higher avg spend or bit better COG landed margin

Still, it is a pretty good billboard that reaches 700,000 people a day, pays its way and makes a margin.

http://www.asymco.com/2011/12/08/how...tore-employee/

Horace just did a great analysis of earnings per employee at apple stores.
post #37 of 113
Quote:
Originally Posted by cy_starkman View Post

. . . 10% margin.

Hmm, pretty thin. Maybe it is a little higher. Maybe it is 20% due to higher avg spend or bit better COG landed margin

Still, it is a pretty good billboard that reaches 700,000 people a day, pays its way and makes a margin.

Good job. Do we get to know figures from individual stores? Probably only if they're unusually profitable, case by case.
post #38 of 113
that's more people than will buy the droid nexus something on the first day of release
post #39 of 113
Let me guess: They're NOT there for free Black Eyed Peas tickets.
post #40 of 113
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

He's just acting like a cynical prick as unusual. Personally, I don't get the desire to first into a new store but I certainly don't think they are abnormal queers the way ConradJoe does.

If there was a new product launching that I felt would be hard to get ahold of I;d wait in a line. From bread to the iPad to simply having to use the bathroom lines serve their purpose.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

That has to be annoying for those commuting through GCT this morning.


Quote:
Originally Posted by paxman View Post

But how amazing is that? All the products are available is several near by Apple stores yet crowds turn up for the unveiling of a new store. It is architecturally interesting, I agree, but this kind of enthusiasm must be the envy of the entire retail world. Impressive.

Yes....

We must excuse the queues!
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