In contrast to other Apple stores, which are necessarily closed to the outside world, the bulk of the Grand Central location is in the open air of the train stations Main Concourse.
On its opening day, the Grand Central Apple store was instantly thronged by customers-at least some of whom had been waiting to enter since the day before.
Despite the iconic location, Apple declined to tweak or adjust the design language for this newest Apple store: it features the same blonde-wood tables and rows of products as youd find in other Apple locations.
The new locations Genius Bar, located on one of the balconies overlooking the concourse.
In addition to the terraces, the Apple store includes a set of enclosed rooms, featuring still more products and accessories.
Apple deployed hundreds of employees to deal with the inevitable first-day crowds.
The accessories area seemed tucked well away from the main action.
Given what surely must be considerable rent, Apple necessarily needs a steady flow of customers in order to keep the location viable. Given the popularity of its other Manhattan stores, this seems unlikely to be a short-term issue.
Apple now uses iPad 2 units in order to display product information, in place of placards.
Apple has gravitated increasingly toward being a mobile-device company. As such, the layout of the store emphasizes MacBook Airs, iPads and iPhones, placing them front-and-center on the terrace.
With most Apple Stores, the company controls every aspect of the space, from the exterior down to the flooring. It doesnt have that ability with the Grand Central space, where the stations architectural details merge with those of Apples. Would Steve Jobs have approved of those chandeliers?
Apple could see strong sales this holiday season off sales of the iPhone 4S and iPad 2, although a refresh of the latter could be around the corner, early in 2012.