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First Philadelphia Apple store reportedly in the works

post #1 of 25
Thread Starter 
Apple has reportedly jumped on a sudden vacancy left by a fine dining restaurant in Philadelphia's historic Center City district by signing a lease for its first retail outlet in the nation's one-time capital.

MacNN cites a source connected to the planning of the project as saying the Mac maker has inked an agreement to take over the former Brasserie Perrier, an American brasserie owned by Georges Perrier that served up French cuisine at 1619 Walnut Street since 1997.

The retail market in the Center City area surrounding Walnut Street has prospered in recent years, as young professionals and empty nesters have increasingly chosen the district as their home. Fine dining restaurants have reportedly grown by 240% in the area since 1992 while gyms, furniture stores, and banks grew 19, 20 and 25 percent over the past year, respectively.

The area of Walnut Street west of Broad Street is also believed to fit Apple's desired aesthetic, housing quality brand retailers such as Brooks Brothers, Steve Madden, BCBG, Cole Haan, Kenneth Cole, Barney’s Co-Op and Armani Exchange.

Although MacNN is short on further details, it reported that Apple appears to have tapped Bohlin Cywinski Jackson to design the store, the same architecture firm responsible for other high-profile Apple shops in Tokyo, New York and London.

BCJ will have its challenges, according to ifoAppleStore, which notes that the 39,000 square-foot building at 1619 Walnut dates back to 1937 and*is listed on the National Register of Historic Buildings. That means that Apple will likely be tied to the structure's existing facade, which allows for windows on only the first of its three lower floors.

The site of 1619 Walnut Street in Philadelphia's Center City.

Up until January 2nd, the building housed the Brasserie Perrier on its ground floor and offices on its upper levels. But ifo, which also cited the location as a potential site for Philly's first Apple store back in 2006, said the booming retail activity in the area recently prompted the building's owner to negotiate a renewal buy-out option from the restaurant, which had been paying $19 per square-foot.

A cluster of retail developments have cropped up on Walnut west of Broad St.

Real estate records recently reflected availability for the ground, second and third levels, where the owner was looking to secure a new occupant willing to pay the new $57 per square-foot going rate for the area. The property sits just 10 blocks from the Independence Hall and Liberty Bell landmarks.
post #2 of 25
That looks like a nice place for an apple store. Looks like where they would put one also. When will they put one in Harlem?
post #3 of 25
.....
post #4 of 25
I wish they'd put one closer to me, the nearest one is about a 45 minute drive.
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post #5 of 25
I visited Philly last year and was surprised it didn't have an apple store.. It's a good area - loads of shops, and if memory serves me, just a block or so from an (ex?) circuit city... I didn't see any other tech shops while I was there, so I think apple will do well.
post #6 of 25
First, YAY!!
Second, thanks for even recognizing Philly's historic status.
Third, I think the cuurent facade will lend itself nicely to Apple design. I can easily see a beautiful glowing Apple logo on the dark granite facade above an entire wall of glass on street level.
post #7 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by foodmetaphors View Post

I wish they'd put one closer to me, the nearest one is about a 45 minute drive.

45 minutes jesus man, there are folks who'd have to drive all day and night or fly to get to an Apple store. 45 minutes is not a long distance!

Skip
post #8 of 25
Philadelphia is a big college town and also has a vibrant publishing industry (two of Apple's core markets).
I too have been surprised it has taken Apple this long to get into this major market.
post #9 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnny Mozzarella View Post

Philadelphia is a big college town and also has a vibrant publishing industry (two of Apple's core markets).
I too have been surprised it has taken Apple this long to get into this major market.

Many Philadelphia area shoppers head down to Wilmington for major purchases to avoid sales tax. There's an Apple store there that I know draws a fair number of Pennsylvania shoppers.
post #10 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by ncee View Post

45 minutes jesus man, there are folks who'd have to drive all day and night or fly to get to an Apple store. 45 minutes is not a long distance!

Skip

Unless you live in Rhode Island.
post #11 of 25
a few weeks ago, i was whining to my friend that one of philadelphia's best restaurants had to go, and i was quite convinced that the space will not be filled for a long time. glad to hear that Apple might be setting shop there.
post #12 of 25
<awaits the dissenters who will claim what a bad choice this is for Apple and how they will have to close stores due to their rampant overpriced products that can't possibly be sold in this current economic climate>
Dick Applebaum on whether the iPad is a personal computer: "BTW, I am posting this from my iPad pc while sitting on the throne... personal enough for you?"
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Dick Applebaum on whether the iPad is a personal computer: "BTW, I am posting this from my iPad pc while sitting on the throne... personal enough for you?"
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post #13 of 25
Hahhh! I called it (well, to my girlfriend anyway) when I heard on the radio 2 weeks ago about the restaurant closing. Finally, I don't need to travel to Cherry Hill or King of Prussia to get my Apple Store fix.
post #14 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Walney View Post

Sorry, couldn't resist (this does seem to be a home for pedants anyway), but shouldn't that be "...in the nation's one-time capital..."? - unless something has happened that I don't know about \

I think it would be the nation's first capitol.
However, you are correct on the grammar!


Hey, it's a perfect spot they chose.
This store will pay for the expansion into "University City" (internal to Philly, universities and hospitals),
and the Northeast, (where the tax base for the city reside).

Good move for Apple.

But, there's a small independent Apple store, not too far, where I bought my iMac.

www.springboardmedia.com
@2212 Walnut St.
Where the mayor waited in a folding chair, to buy the first iPhone...

They may, or may not be happy with this.
I think they will.

Give them a chance to "show their best"!

What do ya'll think?

post #15 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hudson1 View Post

Many Philadelphia area shoppers head down to Wilmington for major purchases to avoid sales tax. There's an Apple store there that I know draws a fair number of Pennsylvania shoppers.

There's also one on the Main Line at the Suburban Square shopping center, in Ardmore. And the massive mall in King of Prussia has one.
Suburban Square is a 15 minute train ride from Center City Philly.
post #16 of 25
It is about time.

The fifth largest city in the nation, and we don't have an Apple store. Bundy (especially) and Springboard Media are going to hate this though - they have had a lock on Center City business, and this location is square in between those two indy Mac stores (Springboard @ 22nd and Bundy @ 18th)


I walk past this location everyday on my way home from work, it is definitely an Apple type location (this section of Walnut Street is basically all high end retailers and such - 4 star french restaurants, multi-million dollar condos and professional athletes and the city's elite are all there....
post #17 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by ncee View Post

45 minutes jesus man, there are folks who'd have to drive all day and night or fly to get to an Apple store. 45 minutes is not a long distance!

Skip

That's pretty far just to go to one specialty store. It's not like I live in a rural area or anything. We DO have a best buy that sells Apple products now, but it's just not the same.
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post #18 of 25
Poor Philadelphia. They don't have an Apple Store yet.

Know this:

There are SEVEN (7) Apple Stores within 65 miles of Philadelphia. FIVE (5) of them are within 25 miles and FOUR (4) of those are inside of 18 miles. Two are within 10 miles.

Philadelphia is in no desperate need.
post #19 of 25
^^ Vermont, however, is. There isn't a single Apple store in the state, and you can count the number of Indy apple stores statewide on one hand. The nearest Apple stores to me are both 2 hours away on a good day- one in Albany and the other in New Hampshire.
post #20 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by MacOutlaw View Post


Hey, it's a perfect spot they chose.
This store will pay for the expansion into "University City" (internal to Philly, universities and hospitals),

Huh? If there is one place Apple does not need help expanding into, it would be University City. They have the Penn Bookstore's Computer Connection (a very strong and 25 years-running pro-Apple reseller). Between them and Apple's stellar marketing to college students, the place is already saturated with Macs.

I graduated from Penn last year. I was also the Apple Campus Rep. The University City clientele will continue to go to the Computer Connection because they're too busy/lazy to go down into Center City. This Apple store will be drawing its revenues from the hipster professionals and empty-nesters moving into all the new condos that are going up

Quote:
But, there's a small independent Apple store, not too far, where I bought my iMac.

www.springboardmedia.com
@2212 Walnut St.
Where the mayor waited in a folding chair, to buy the first iPhone...

They may, or may not be happy with this.
I think they will.

Poor guys. I like Springboard. Unlike Apple, they had a loaner program for when your computer was off to get repaired. Anyone else remember that great Apple specialist on Lancaster avenue in Ardmore?

Anyway, Philly rocks. I hope Nutter can steer us through the budget crisis.
post #21 of 25
Poor place for a store and a waste of Apple capital.

Delaware is No Tax that is a 7% savings off the top.

There is no free parking and who the heck wants to cart a 45 lb Mac Pro on public trans.

Will be gone in less than year.
post #22 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by camrahn View Post

Poor place for a store and a waste of Apple capital.

Delaware is No Tax that is a 7% savings off the top.

There is no free parking and who the heck wants to cart a 45 lb Mac Pro on public trans.

Will be gone in less than year.


Ha! That's what they said when they opened stores in Manhattan. A bazillion dollars of sales ago. I think they know what they're doing - the fact that there's 2 successful indy Mac stores nearby might be a clue...
post #23 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by John French View Post

^^ Vermont, however, is. There isn't a single Apple store in the state, and you can count the number of Indy apple stores statewide on one hand. The nearest Apple stores to me are both 2 hours away on a good day- one in Albany and the other in New Hampshire.

Vermont: Population 625,000
Philadelphia: Population 1,450,000
Philadelphia Metro: Population 5,800,000

In 1870 Philadelphia had a larger population than Vermont does today.
So just wait 140 years.
post #24 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by camrahn View Post

There is no free parking and who the heck wants to cart a 45 lb Mac Pro on public trans.

Because 45 lb Mac Pros make up 0.5% of their computer sales, whereas 3-6 lb notebooks make up 60% of their sales. Don't forget those heavy iPods and iPhones people will have to lug home.

There are plenty of parking garages but the main demographic is the hundreds of thousands of residents who live in and around center city.
There are probably a hundred thousand college students in Philadelphia as well.
Also there are other reasons to come to an Apple Store other than buying a computer(training and tech support)
post #25 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnny Mozzarella View Post

Vermont: Population 625,000
Philadelphia: Population 1,450,000
Philadelphia Metro: Population 5,800,000

In 1870 Philadelphia had a larger population than Vermont does today.
So just wait 140 years.

Hahahah Ouch!

I love VT but the population density would not make such a store a good business move.
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