A three-story Apple dealership due to open in Sydney's Bondi Junction this month will be the largest anywhere in Australia, according to managing director, Ben Morgan.
The Academy Store is a relocation of AppleCentre Taylor Square. The move was driven, Morgan said, by a desire for larger premises and the need to escape an increasingly crime-ridden Darlinghurst. The new store, which will have more than 1200sqm of floor space, opens on May 15.
"We will be the biggest in terms of floor space and will also offer the widest range of services and training under one roof," Morgan said.
Building a sense of community around the store was very important, he said.
Its floor plan already includes a 24-seat theatre. A sound recording studio will be added in six months.
"We will use the cinema for short film because some of our customers are spending a lot of money producing movies but find it impossible to get a mainstream release," he said. "The studio will offer recording for podcasts or even independent music production. These are all services that will connect our customers."
Morgan is also working on financial products and finalising deals with major retailers to sell his store's Academy training, in the form of kits, alongside Apple products.
As he prepared to pack up and leave the suburb, Morgan expressed disappointment with developments in Darlinghurst.
"The overall crime and safety situation in Darlinghurst is degrading rapidly," he said. "The council isn't succeeding in revitalising it or even maintaining the status quo. Parents would much rather bring their kids to Bondi Junction."