Apple Retail Store a candidate for replacing huge Virgin Megastore in Paris

“Apple is a candidate for replacing the Virgin Megastore at the Champs-Élysées in Paris, according to Le Figaro,” MacNN reports.

“The French newspaper claims that Apple ‘will be in the running’ for the location, which Virgin is reportedly trying to sell,” MacNN reports. “The latter company is in the process of closing down some outlets; president Jean-Louis Reynard has said that the chain is switching to a ‘new model of store, smaller, with a more segmented offer.'”

MacNN reports, “The building in question also holds a massive 75,347 square feet…”

Read more in the full article here.

12 Comments

  1. Oh the irony, iTunes replaces Virgin Megastore. Champs-Élysées was worst place I went to in Paris, a over priced strip mall.  However it will do great there.  A safe house for all the men stuck with their; wife, girlfriend, drama queen boyfriend (or all three).  

  2. I remember being in Paris when the Virgin Megastore first opened in the ’90s.

    It was a minor scandal that Virgin demanded the store be open on Sundays, contrary to the French tradition of the time that most businesses were shut on Sundays.

    Beautiful space, as I recall.

    1. How about Apple goes across the street to the SF Virgin Megastore? Or around the corner to the Union Square Macy’s? Or even the old Border’s Books on Powell St.?.. Good BART access and cable-car exposure!

  3. Jean-Louis Reynard has said that the chain is switching to a ‘new model of store, smaller, with a more segmented offer.

    A new model of store with fewer CDs given that Apple’s iTunes Store, iTunes and several hundred million compatible devices have effectively removed the market for the physical music artefact.

    If you ever wanted an analog for the evolution in the commercial world, this is it: first, iTunes replaced the act of having to take a CD case down from the shelf and put it in the player. Then the iPod replaced the need to carry cassettes and CDs in your pocket or backpack. Then the iTunes Store replaced the need to go to the store. And now, having outcompeted the physical CD/record store to the point of extinction, Apple is potentially going to move into the home of the thing it killed.

    1. A couple of years ago, my best friend and I took my boat up the Sacramento river to Old Town Sacramento. We went to the Tower Theater and saw the record store across the street which was the first original Tower Records. While Tower Records the chain had gone under, this still remained a record store.

      My friend didn’t have an iPod or even a real computer, but he was just as into music as I was. As we entered the store, I realized how long it had been since I had been in a music store. It felt *really* weird, but cool in a nostalgic way.

      My friend had a particular band he was looking for, and after searching through various sections of the store (remember that!), he went up to the counter and asked a sales person. The sales person started clicking away on a computer to look it up. I thought, well at least they have their inventory computerized now.

      He said they didn’t have it, but he could order it. My friend told him thanks, but we were just in town for the day. The sales person told him, “Oh just order it yourself. Someone is selling it on Amazon for a penny + shipping”.

      As we left and walked back to the boat, I downloaded the album on my iPhone.

      Ya, why did Tower Records fail?

      I’d like to produce a sequel to the movie You’ve Got Mail, where Harry’s chain of bookstores goes though bankruptcy while Sally becomes Apple’s Product Manager for iBooks.

      1. You’ve Got Mail was a horrid remake of Little Shop On The Corner leveraging Hank’s and Ryan’s chemistry (as per Sleepless In Seattle) to much less effect.

        Whilst I find Hanks amenable for the most part, he’s no Jimmy Stewart.

        That little rant over, you’re right: the small town family-owned bookstore got destroyed by Borders and Barnes and Noble in the US and Waterstones, WH Smith and the supermarkets here in the UK. Those companies are now about to get the same treatment that iTunes meted out to Tower and Virgin just as they had previously killed the small record store.

        Such is life.

  4. That seems rather unlikely. Apple already has a “flagship” store just over 2km away at Place de l’Opéra, and the last thing I’d expect Apple to do is give up that incredible location. If they wanted to be on the Champs-Élysées, I would’ve thought they would’ve done that to begin with rather than the incredible achievement they pulled off with the Place de l’Opéra location.

    Additionally, the Virgin store really isn’t in a good location. There’s very little facade, and what there is is obscured by trees. It’s mostly a cave inside with all kinds of nooks dictated by the structure of the building. Think of it like many of those Borders stores that closed down. Specifically the one on University in Palo Alto. It’s a great building, just not for an Apple Store, which is why they tool the old Z Gallery space (and demolished the building).

    They can’t demolish the Virgin Store building since the store is within a building, not the building itself.

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