“To those who dwell in the design universe, Apple Computer has accomplished the near-impossible: making nerdy computing products seem hip and friendly,” Linda Matchan reports for The Boston Globe. “Sleek, ergonomic, and accessible, first their computers and now their iPods have gained raves and a cult following, and they have brought terms like ‘nano’ out of geekdom and into everyday use.”

“‘I think every designer in the world has been in a meeting where someone announces that their printer, toaster, telephone, breakfast cereal should become the iPod of its category,’ says Steve Portigal of Portigal Consulting , a California firm specializing in design and business strategy,” Matchan reports.

Matchan reports, “Now, with the opening of an architecturally audacious retail store in Manhattan, Apple has crossed another design threshold. The Apple Store Fifth Avenue — a mammoth underground docking station for Macs, iPods, and accessories — has made the ultimate statement of design and product packaging by morphing the design of Apple products with the design of the building that houses them. ‘It’s difficult to think of other companies that have such design coherence,’ says Paul Thompson, director of New York’s Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum . ‘Everything comes together under one design vision. Anyway you cut the apple, design is driving it.’

Matchan reports, “Apple has 152 stores around the world, but the Apple Store Fifth Avenue is one of eight ”high-profile’ retail stores, which the company defines as those in exceptionally high-traffic urban locations; others are on London’s Regent Street , on North Michigan Avenue in Chicago, in Tokyo’s Ginza shopping district, and in New York ‘s SoHo. Soon there will be another one, in Boston. Plans are in the works to build one on the site of a Copy Cop store at 815 Boylston St. across from the Prudential Center; the neighborhood’s profile has gotten a lot higher recently, with the arrival of high-rent businesses such as Barneys in Copley Place and the Valentino boutique on Newbury Street.”

Full article, including a gallery of the most unique Apple store interiors, here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Wade” for the heads up.]

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