Apple just opened its latest Japanese store in Kyoto, the first outlet to open in the city by the U.S. tech company.
Located in the heart of Kyoto’s main shopping corridor, a queue of customers stretched 10 blocks down Shijō Dori on Saturday to visit the Apple Kyoto store.
Apple described the new store as a “cultural and technological hub for Japan” with the Kyoto branch centred around a multi-level atrium that offers free “Today at Apple” sessions on photography, music, coding and more.
Some 100 employees have been hired for the Kyoto store, Apple added, with 12 languages spoken among them.
“Kyoto is such a culturally rich city, where tradition meets creativity and technology. It is a special place for Apple and we are so honoured to have opened Apple Kyoto today.” said Angela Ahrendts, SVP, Apple Retail.
The store design takes inspiration from traditional style and materials.
The upper levels are clad in a translucent material inspired by Japanese lanterns, while lightweight timber frames and special paper on the upper facade make reference to the country’s traditional houses.
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Apple is currently on a retail expansion in the country, with plans to open several new stores, and remodel existing ones, in the coming years, it said.
Apple first arrived in Japan in 2003, which saw the iPhone maker bowing its debut international store in Tokyo.
With the new Kyoto store, Apple now operates nine standalone boutiques in Japan across Tokyo where it holds four locations and in Fukuoka, Miyagi, Osaka and Aichi.