Apple's Christiana Mall store in Delaware
Employees at the Newark, Del., Apple store told ABC News that the shop -- located in a 39-year-old, single-story mall -- sells "more iPhones than anyone." Apple does not break out sales numbers per store, and an Apple spokesperson declined to provide the news channel with any additional information.
Hinting at a competitive streak within Apple's retail empire, employees noted that while the company's Fifth Avenue flagship --which they called "the glass box on Manhattan's Fifth Avenue" -- outpaces the mall store in revenue, it falls behind the smaller outlet in iPhone sales.
The Christiana Mall store, Apple's only first-party retail store in Delaware, benefits from a unique geographic positioning. Delaware charges no state sales tax, and the mall is a relatively quick jaunt on Interstate 95 from neighboring tax-charging states like Maryland, Pennsylvania, and New York.
The Christiana Mall store attracts out-of-state shoppers thanks to Delaware's nonexistent sales tax
New York's sales tax rate of 8.875 percent would raise the price of a base model iPad Air from $499 to $543, for instance. While the savings may not be substantial enough to warrant a single customer driving in their car, it does present a tantalizing opportunity for those making group voyages or for foreign buyers who want to resell Apple devices in countries where they command much higher prices.
While Apple generally limits the number of devices a single customer can purchase, one store staffer told ABC News that some customers have bought hundreds of iPhones at a time for resale. The manager of another store in the mall confirmed that shoppers often arrive at the store in chartered buses that he says feature New York registration.
The store is so popular that Apple reportedly eschews their usual practice of hiring private, Apple-uniformed security guards and instead contracts off-duty officers from the Delaware Highway Patrol. Anywhere from four to ten troopers work the store at a time, with their numbers growing during popular product launches or shopping occasions like Black Friday.
The Christiana Mall store was among Apple's first retail stores, opening its doors in 2004. It has since undergone two expansions and occupies approximately 10,000 square feet in its current incarnation, according to Delaware Business Daily.