Apple’s expertise in creating curved glass buildings will culminate with the iSpaceship campus but it actually stems from retail stores. From the Pudong store to the upcoming Nanjing East store in Shanghai, Apple’s profound love for the curved glass and huge open spaces has become iconic. The Shanghai store is opening Friday, September 23, at 9am local time. Image courtesy of our reader Ethan.

As the end of September draws closer with each passing day, Apple is on the roll opening new retail stores around the world at a rapid pace (1, 2, 34 and 5). With the final week of Apple’s fiscal 2011 year upon us, no wonder five new stores are opening this weekend as the company works towards meeting its self-proclaimed goal of having up to thirty new retail stores in their fourth fiscal quarter.

As noted by ifoAppleStore, “with this week’s grand openings, the number of new stores will total 27″. The site which specializes in Apple’s retail efforts says up to five additional stores could open before the U.S. Thanksgiving holiday, including retail spots in Canada, France, Spain and the Netherlands.

There’s a very prudent reason for such an aggressive retail expansion: iPhone 5 should launch next month to what’s been described as ‘unprecedented’ demand and these new stores should support the massive launch.

Go past the fold for a quick run down through store openings this weekend, in addition to Canada’s Metrotown store we covered the last week. All grand openings are scheduled for Saturday, September 24, at 10am local time, with the exception of the Shaghai store which opens doors for business Friday.

Westfield Hornsby, Sydney, Australia - Australia’s thirteenth store and the sixth store in the city of Sydney is in the heart of the Westfield Hornsby shopping mall. Grand opening is scheduled for Saturday, September 24, at 10am local time.

Parly 2, Paris, France – Apple’s retail presence in France is growing with their ninth store opening in the country and fifth in the Paris area. The new store is located within the Parly 2 shopping mall in a Paris suburb called Le Chesnay north of Versailles.

Centro Sicilia, Catania, Italy – This store in the province of Catania is located within at the Center Sicily mall, on the western outskirts of Catania and the Etna Regional Park to the south, explains SetteB.IT. It marks Apple’s ninth store in Italy and the first store opening on the island of Sicily, Europe’s southern-most location.

New Haven, Connecticut, U.S.Yale Daily News reported back in February that Apple was building a store in Yale University-owned building. It is now revealed that Apple’s fifth store in Connecticut will occupy the space where a Barnes & Noble bookstore was previously found, sharing the storefront with a remodeled Yale Bookstore. Yeah, an Apple Store inside campus. We take it this Facebook group is no longer needed.


Black curtains hide Apple’s store in the Yale University building in Connecticut from view. Image courtesy of reader Jason Knowlton

Apple’s store will replace this Barns & Noble bookstore. Image credit: New Haven Independent

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