Apple Store in India puts the Focus on Craftsmanship

Apple BKC is Apple’s first flagship store in India. The design of the store takes elements from local materials and recreates a global setting just like the representation of the brand and it occupies a prominent corner of Jio World Drive, a new retail destination that is part of the Bandra Kurla Complex.

Glass façade is the feature that runs through Apple stores around the world and in Mumbai, the 8-meter-tall glass façade enhances a seamless connection between the generous double-height volume and the outdoor areas. Greenery flows from the public realm into the store, blurring the boundaries between the outside and inside. A row of ficus trees, along the inside of the glazing, accentuates the store’s relationship with its landscaped surroundings.

The highlight of this store is the ceiling reflecting a rattan weave design but with innovative use of wooden tiles. The elaborate ceiling is made up of a triangular grid of 450,000 individual timber elements, reflecting the unique geometry of the store.  Each of the 1,000 ceiling tiles is assembled using 400 pieces of sustainably sourced oak timber arranged in a lattice woven pattern, inspired by the work of cane and rattan weavers found in Mumbai.

At ground level, display tables and avenues feature Apple’s wide range of incredible products. The Forum hosts ‘Today at Apple’ and acts as a learning and event space with a large video wall. Framed by a colonnade the visitor’s eye is naturally drawn towards the striking feature wall, which is wrapped in a dazzling white acoustic fabric.

“Apple BKC embodies the creative spirit of Mumbai. The design incorporates finely crafted elements, locally sourced materials and lush greenery – to stimulate the senses and lift the spirits,” says Stefan Behling, head of Foster + Partners studio.

A striking staircase, made of stainless steel and two 14-meter-long glass balustrades, creates a delicate connection between the ground level and the cantilevered mezzanine. From the upper level, visitors have a spectacular view of the ground floor and the landscaped public realm.

The store is a symbiosis of Apple’s unique design approach with finely crafted elements and locally sourced materials. The sense of continuity between the interior and exterior spaces is emphasised by a hand-crafted timber ceiling that extends beyond the glass façade to the underside of the exterior canopy.

“Apple BKC is a reflection of Mumbai’s vibrant culture and brings together the best of Apple in a beautiful, welcoming space for connection and community,” says the architects.

Two stone walls draw you into the light-filled space and provide a foil to the double-height glass façade which wraps around the building’s exterior.  The stone, with is fine grain evoking the silky texture of luxurious georgette fabric, is sourced from Rajasthan. Achieving LEED platinum certificate, the store is supplied with renewable energy from a dedicated solar array.

All Images and Details Courtesy Fosters + Partners