Apple brings in the green

The newest Apple store in Macau has been filled with greenery to reflecting a growing desire for an inviting, contemplative space where technology and arts come together.

Foster + Partners once again joined forces with Apple’s design team — led by Jonathan Ive and Angela Ahrendts — to create a greenery-filled store in Macau.


Providing a stark contrast to the bustling city, Apple Cotai Central appears as a welcoming luminescent cube set within a quiet bamboo grove and an external plaza.

Access to the apple store is provided via the plaza, a space that forms an “urban room” that draws people into the site. The structure itself has been conceptualised by Foster + Partners as a “paper lantern”, which surrounds visitors with glowing stone panels. These interior elevations shimmer throughout the day, while at night the cube radiates a warm glow. The façade comprises five layers of glass integrated with incredibly thin layers of stone, a composition that lends the building its distinctive materiality.

A bamboo grove at the centre of the scheme pierces the soaring atrium, which is topped with a large skylight. The ground level is wrapped in a glazed façade that looks onto a layered bamboo screen, providing a heightened sense of enclosure. Two grand stone staircases lead to the upper level, lit by skylight strips that bring in filtered natural light. Here, display tables are arranged around the central atrium looking onto the bamboo grove below.

“We wanted to create something very simple and pure — a beautiful and elegant building that complements the sounds, sights and colours of Macau, while embodying a sense of clarity and quietude,” explains Stefan Behling, head of studio, Foster + Partners. “The design creates two distinct spaces, one inside and one outside, imbued with a sense of authentic beauty arising from the innovative use of natural materials.”

Get our enews

Design and development news that comes to you

Czech Republic’s tallest tower takes inspiration from a shipwreck

Taking one of the more left-field inspirations for a skyscraper, a sculptor David Cerny and architect Tomáš Císař of ...

Renzo Piano’s third Barangaroo residential tower approved

After setbacks and negotiations with the City of Sydney, Renzo Piano’s third Barangaroo tower has been given approval. The ...

BIG reveals four luxury penthouses in Canadian ‘King’ complex

Bjarke Ingels Group, headed by ‘starchitect’ Bjarke Ingels have revealed plans for four luxury penthouses in Toronto channelling ...

Metricon Homes named as the largest homebuilder in Australia

Metricon Homes has been named as the largest homebuilder in Australia in a year where the total number ...

World’s tallest residential tower now completed struggles with sales

In New York the world’s tallest apartment tower, Central Park Tower, has celebrated its ‘topping off’ ceremony and ...


Stay connected to the SPEC

Join our reader network by signing up to our weekly newsletter and receive design and development news straight to your inbox

© 2018 Universal Media Co. All Rights Reserved. Privacy Policy. Terms of Service. The material on this site may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, or otherwise used, except with the prior written permission of Universal Media Co.