Apple’s massive Grand Central retail store draws big crowds ahead of 10am grand opening

An incredible new Apple store inside New York City’s landmark Grand Central Terminal – one of Apple’s largest stores in the world - is set to open this morning at 10am and already hundreds have queued up. The Fortune’s Philip Elmer-DeWitt snapped up the above shot showing staffers on the balconies above Grand Central Terminal and hundreds of fans stretching all the way down one track and part-way back.

The company will treat avid fans to cool perks, such as 4,000 black shirts with “Apple Store, Grand Central” spelled out in lettering, resembling a train arrival board. The Mac maker also posted the below press shot on its PR site. A dedicated page for the 23,000-square-foot store on Apple’s web site reveals the store work hours Monday through Friday from 7am to 9pm, 10am to 7pm on Saturdays and on Sundays from 11am to 6pm. Here’s a glimpse of the excitement.

The store’s extended holiday hours plus another video are right after the break. Our own Seth Weintraub is on hand so stay tuned for more updates, coming soon.

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Grand Central Apple Store Media Day interior shots hit the web as Apple makes first official statement


Image by jennydeluxe

Grand opening of Apple’s massive new store inside New York City’s Grand Central Station is scheduled for Friday, December 9 at 10am, but today at 10am is a “media day”. Ahead of the event, first images of the store’s interior are cropping up all over the web. UPDATE: Apple just released a press statement formally announcing the new store. The new outlet is open from 7am to 9pm, Monday through Friday, Saturday 10am to 7pm and Sunday 11am to 6pm as we reported last week.

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The release also mentions 315 employees that work at the store, providing services such as Personal Pickup, two Genius Bars, the new 15-minute Express Workshops that offer “tips and tricks in a streamlined format to serve customers on a tight schedule” and of course the EasyPay system via the updated Apple Store app which lets folks “scan and pay for accessories with their iPhone”. More images, full release and another video by Fortune’s Philip Elmer-DeWitt right after the break.

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Grand Central Apple Store temporary frontage revealed (video)

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The wraps are coming off of the Grand Central Apple store frontage to reveal a ticker sign according to our morning commuter tipster.   The screens move like flipping letters of the old Grand Central timetables.  The design is reminiscent of Apple’s Green Monster Facade at the Boston Store.

A construction worker on the scene said that the store wasn’t going to be opening any time soon, reiterating a comment from yesterday.  Apple had originally hoped to have the store open for the Black Friday shopping rush, but now rumors are floating around of Friday, December 9th.

Another angle and more signage snaps below – including video.  Thanks Michael Ortega from Stamford, CT and others!

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Grand Central Apple Store employees told today that the store would have to wait another week

It appears that Apple isn’t satisfied with the progress on the Grand Central Apple Store and is postponing the opening at least a week perhaps more.  Clearly, Apple would have preferred to have another huge venue open for Black Friday but we’ve been told by a GC Apple employee today that they’ve been told to continue working at other New York Area Apple Stores during Black Friday weekend.

Last weekend, a group of employees was told that the opening announcement was scheduled for today and Apple was going to try to open for Black Friday.

On the other hand, it is good to have an abundance of Apple Store workers on hand at the other NYC Apple Stores for the busiest shopping weekend of the year.

We’re sorry we got your hopes up and we’re still hoping to see the store open next week.

Update: Mashable spoke to a construction worker who has said as much.

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Retail update: Redesigned Knox Street store re-opens Friday, new store launches in Spain’s tourist town of Marbella

As Apple’s former retail chief Ron Johnson sets its sights on re-inventing the shopping experience at the J.C. Penney department stores and the search for his replacement continues, the Cupertino, California-headquartered gadget designer isn’t resting on its laurels. Future plans call for continuation of an aggressive retail expansion that includes 40 new stores during fiscal 2012, thirty of them outside the United States. Read more

Grand Central Apple Store, the biggest in the world, scheduled to be announced this Tuesday

Update: We’ve been told there has been a delay.

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We reported on the construction progress of the future Apple grand Central store earlier this month and have since received further information and pictures from our  trip to the location and from the tech blog, Techfootnote. Both sources grabbed shots of the upcoming Grand Central Apple Store as it was actively being worked on Friday, November 18th.  There were dozens of construction workers and corporate reps putting the final touches on the future store.  In the images you can see what looks to be several large hanging boards.  The boards are hung on large hooks, which would make it easy to pull off and reveal what is behind the boards.

9to5Mac has heard that Apple will officially announce the opening of the Grand Central Apple store this Tuesday and presumably pull the black boards to reveal the announcement.  This store garners extra special attention because it will be Apple’s largest in the world by square footage and resides in a building where 750,000 people pass daily and over 1,000,000 people during the holidays.  Check out our previously posted spyshots of the location for a sneak peak of the store.

The Grand Central Apple Store will have little over 300 employees, which are currently training in other local NY Apple stores.  All Apple retail employees will be attending a holiday-focused (policies / loss prevention) meeting tonight.

From what we have now heard, Apple will be filling the store with stock and applying the finishing touches this week putting the  the actual opening of the store on Black Friday or shortly thereafter.  The goal all along has been to get the store open for the holiday shopping and to make a big splash with Apple’s new crown jewel of retail.

Wall of Monitors spied between pillars, right, Video of the store space below (more here):

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