The Cielo Vista Mall, built in 1974, is just two miles from the Mexican border. Photo: G. O’Graffer

While Apple has yet to open its first retail store in Mexico, the El Paso, Texas store the company is allegedly mulling should be Godsent for Apple’s Mexican fans – it’s just two miles from the Mexico border town of Ciudad Juarez. According to ifoAppleStore, the company will positing the store on the ground floor, next to the Gap store, of the 1.2 million square-feet Cielo Vista Mall along Interstate 10 on east side of El Paso. If all goes well, the El Paso store should open in early 2012.

Importantly, on the US side of the border, the store will fill in a huge, seven-state black-out zone serviced only by the ABQ Uptown (NM) store. From the other side of the border, it will attract Mexico residents to the closest Apple store access across the entire chain (Otay Ranch, Calif. is second-closest at five miles). And significantly, government research says those Mexican residents account for about 16 percent of retail sales within El Paso, or about $1.6 billion a year.

Interior shots of the Cielo Vista mall from the owner, The Simon Property Group

Despite the departure of its retail chief Ron Johnson, it’s business as usual at Apple where new stores are being planned and built around the world. Apple is planning its first retail store in Sweden and another one in Hamburg, Germany, for example. In addition, the company has removed the 32-foot glass cube entrance into its iconic Fifth Avenue store in New York and will replace it at an estimated cost of nearly $7 million, which is how much the company had spent to assemble the cube back in 2005.

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