Two Future Stores Spotted In China

February 7, 2014

Apple’s retail store expansion into China has been slow and methodical, and has not reached any of its publicly-stated goals, leaving store watchers with little to see. But now tipsters say two stores are in different phases of construction in Chongqing central China, with one store possibly opening this year. The region is home to 28 million residents, and is a major transport hub on the Yangtze River. The nearest Apple store is MixC Chengdu, about four hours away by road. The first future store is under construction at the Paradise Walk mall, one of the city’s most upscale shopping destinations. The store will reportedly resemble the existing IFC Mall (Hong Kong) store on two levels, and construction is underway behind bamboo poles and screening. The second store will be at Guotai Square, a new development. This store will resembled the Pudong (Shanghai) store, but construction appears to have stalled for now. Former Sr. VP retail Ron Johnson set a goal of having 25 Apple stores open by February 2012. And last year current CEO Tim Cook said he wanted to double the number of China stores within two years. Despite those efforts, there are just 11 stores in the country now, with reported future locations only in Dalian and Guangzhou. According to tipsters, the Paradise Walk store could open by year’s end, but the timeline for the Guotai Square store isn’t known.

The only evidence of the rumored Apple store Guotai Mall is a circular barricade blocking off an area in the plaza.

This view of the rumored Paradise Walk store appears to show it will be on three levels. However, tipsters say the plan has been changed to a two-level store.

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