US tech giant Apple is reportedly planning to open its biggest store in the world at Mall of the Emirates in Dubai. The company will open a shop in the emirate that is bigger than its current flagship outlet - the Grand Central Store in New York, EDGAR.com reported.
Earlier this week, Apple confirmed plans to open a store in the Middle East region “in the near future” following the posting of a series of retail jobs on its website for Dubai.
The EDGAR website quoted a source as saying that the Dubai store – which will be the biggest Apple has ever built – was originally planned to replace the current cinema complex and is likely to open in the first quarter of 2015.
In a statement to Arabian Business this week, Apple said: “The United Arab Emirates is an important country for Apple. We launched the Apple Online Store, UAE in 2011 and it's one of our fastest growing markets around the world.
“We look forward to opening a physical store in the region, and sharing Apple's unique shopping experience and services that have been incredibly opular around the world, in the near future,” the statement said. While there was no indication as to when the store would open, previous hiring schedules indicate that the store would open in February/March next year.
Apple CEO Tim Cook visited the UAE in February this year, meeting with Dubai ruler Sheikh Mohammed, as well as a number of Apple resellers. Currently the largest Apple Store spans 23,000 sq ft in Grand Central Store in New York. Apple's iconic Fifth Avenue store boasts the highest number of staff members of any Apple Store, with over 300 employees.