Foster + Partners has designed many Apple Stores around the world; from Paris to Istanbul. Here are 10 of their best designs.
Apple Marina Bay Store
The store's main space is an open-plan area within the 30-metre-diameter, self-supporting glass and steel dome. The spherical glass store is made from 114 pieces of glass with 10 narrow, steel vertical mullions for structural support. Accessed via a 45-metre-long underwater tunnel from the nearby shopping complex, the store is surrounded on all sides by the bay – creating the impression that it is floating.
Apple Central World
A timber-clad column and overhanging roof that resembles a tree canopy characterize Apple Central World store. It is wrapped in floor-to-ceiling curved glass facades that provide passersby uninterrupted views inside and frame the tree-like interiors, referred to by Apple as the Tree Canopy. The store has a diameter of 24.4 meters, with the sculptural column clad in 1,461 slats of European white oak placed at its center.
Indigenous trees and wooden workbenches line the inside of Apple Iconsiam in Bangkok, the first Apple Store to open in Thailand. Fronted by two expansive glass facades, it is designed as an extension of the plant-filled plaza it sits on. It is topped by a large overhanging roof lined with timber, and supported by just four columns that provide a spacious, open-plan interior.
Apple Piazza Liberty
An eight-meter high water feature fronts the Milan outlet, which was, according to architects, supposed to be an "immersive recreation" of running through a fountain as a child. "We combined two fundamental elements of the Italian piazza — water and stone — adding a glass portal that creates a multi-sensory experience as visitors enter the store through a cascading fountain that seems to envelop them."
One of Foster + Partners most unconventional Apple Stores is located in a 19th century apartment block on Paris' Champs-Élysées. Entered via a 19th century Parisian passage, customers arrive within the central courtyard. The courtyard is sheltered by a Kaleidoscope solar roof-light made up of mirrored pyramids that reflect dappled sunlight onto the internal facades and floor below.
Apple Cotai Central
The cuboidal Apple Centre Cotai glows from within, thanks to an innovative facade made from a composite of glass and stone. Five layers of glass are overlaid with layers of very thin stone, creating the illusion of a solid stone wall that allows light through. The building incorporates bamboo both externally and internally. It is surrounded by a dense thicket of plants and has a "grove" of bamboo growing through a central atrium.
Apple Dubai Mall
Set over two floors of the Dubai Mall, the shop's main feature is its 56-metre-long sweeping terrace that gives views across the city and of the Burj Khalifa. It features intricate carbon-fiber shutters, modeled on traditional Arabic mashrabiya, a projecting bay window enclosed by decorative wooden screens. Carbon-fiber screens designed to protect the space from the sun pivot out during the day but open to give access to the terrace at night.
Apple Orchard Road
Potted trees and sweeping staircases hand-carved from stone characterize the Apple Store in Singapore. The building's most prominent feature is its trees. There are eight mature trees at the entrance and a further 12 ficus trees inside. The building also integrates an array of sustainable technologies – meaning all of its energy comes from renewable sources.
Apple Michigan Avenue
A slender carbon-fibre roof designed to resemble a scaled-up version of the Apple's Macbook characterizes this store on Chicago's waterfront. The glass-walled building is flanked by two granite staircases that create a pathway from the neighbouring plaza to the river esplanade while maintaining views from this public space and the water.
Apple Zorlu Centre
Apple Zorlu Centre in Istanbul was the first Foster + Partners-designed Apple Store to open. Occupying two stories below ground the store is topped by a glass cube that rises within the plaza of a shopping center, offering visitors views inside.