Coming soon to Wenzhou
China's next Apple Store is ready to open.
Our three-month opening drought is finally almost over: Apple MixC Wenzhou opens on November 4 at 10:00 a.m. It’ll become the 46th Apple Store in mainland China, fourth in the Zhejiang province, and the first in Wenzhou. MixC Wenzhou is a large enclosed mall, and Apple will occupy a single-level store on floor L1.
Wallpapers are available for Mac, iPad, and iPhone, and there’s even an Apple Watch face. The special Apple logo decorating the wallpapers and the temporary fabric mural covering the store both celebrate the art of 蓝夹缬 (roughly translated: “blue clip valerian”), an ancient textile printing technique cultivated in Wenzhou. Check out this video (with English subtitles) if you’d like to learn more about the process.
Some trivia: Wenzhou is the 10th Apple Store with the “MixC” prefix. For those outside of China, MixC is a portfolio of notable malls operated by CR Mixc Lifestyle. Think of them like Westfield or Simon Malls, but larger and more luxurious.
Hiding in plain sight
In July, construction work began on a discrete expansion into an adjacent Lucky Brand store that closed last May. Apple dismantled the storefront and began resurfacing the facade… with plain red brick! The renovated area expands Backstage but maintains the current customer-facing store footprint. I checked the documents for this project and confirmed that a $1,009,100 permit for “Interior remodel and expansion of Apple Store into adjacent suite A-17” was filed. The store also filed to install bollards.
Facade construction wrapped up in October, effectively leaving The Promenade at Sagemore with a ghost storefront secretly built for Apple. This isn’t the first time Apple has anonymized shopping space to expand a store, but it’s especially notable in Marlton because Apple Sagemore is one of the smallest and most outdated stores in the world.
I’ve already written about Mirage at Apple Park Visitor Center several times here, but I need to mention it again to share this wonderful photo essay by Arun Venkatesan. Arun profiled the details of Mirage with a set of excellent photos you won’t want to miss. The macro photography reveals a new dimension to the artwork I hadn’t noticed before. I won’t spoil the shots here — check them out yourself.
Thanks for reading Tabletops.
Apple Piazza Liberty
Photo via @thereal_nik.