Foster + Partners recently worked in close collaboration with the design team at Apple led by chief design officer, Sir Jonathan Ive to build Apple Aventura. Apple's latest store embodies Miami's spirit of openness and generosity, bringing people together under an undulating vaulted roof that is reminiscent of the city's nautical and architectural roots.
The materiality and flowing spaces are inspired by the region's Art Deco buildings, with the new two-level store creating a dynamic destination that nurtures creativity and innovation.
"This store is very 'Miami' to me - its special trees, the light and the new roof," Ive commented. "It is also quintessentially Apple, marrying the outdoor lifestyle with a sense of freedom and creativity that is intrinsic to the way we work."
Located in the new wing at the bustling Aventura Mall, the ground level is adjacent to the mall entrance plaza and the fountain featuring the incredible public art sculpture, Aventura Slide Tower by Carsten Höller, showcasing Miami's status as a destination for art and culture. A densely planted garden welcomes visitors with teak tables and chairs under the dappled shade that mirror the internal layout. Acting as an outdoor Genius Grove and a place for visitors to relax, the design of the garden is a response to Miami's outdoor lifestyle.
The glazed façade blurs the boundary between the interior and exterior, with the grove of trees and display tables flowing seamlessly into the vast double-height hall, sheltered by the extraordinary vaulted roof. Made solely from precast elements, its 80-foot-long (24.3 meters) concrete beams span 60-feet (18.2 meters) between slender steel columns, that are clad with a concrete casing. Between the beams, 20-foot-wide (6 meters) concrete arches span to form a barrel-vaulted ceiling, which is covered by a white fabric on the underside for acoustic attenuation.
Inside, a sweeping flight of steps forms a generous amphitheater, looking onto the Forum screen. Linking the internal entrance to the plaza below, the steps form the social heart of the store. They have leather seating and integrated charging stations where people can watch and experience Apple's varied program of talks and Apple Music events and have their appointments with Apple Geniuses, all within a naturally lit and calm environment.
"We love the honesty and purity of the concrete. The language and materiality at Apple Aventura Mall are inspired by Miami's white Art Deco traditions and climate, making it an expression of its place and culture," said Stefan Behling, Head of Studio, Foster + Partners. "This is the first Apple store to feature white precast concrete as the predominant structural system and it is also a continuation of the materiality we explored at Apple Park."
Photography: Nigel Young, Courtesy of Foster + Partners