New Apple Store in Madrid Puerta del Sol

Folks, it’s official. They’ve signed the lease. The much-rumored New Apple Store in Madrid, Spain will likely be inaugurated at the end of 2011 or beginning of 2012. It will be located in the emblematic Puerta del Sol, specifically at Puerta del Sol, #1, the oft-photographed building with the neon sign “Tío Pepe” watching over Madrid’s busiest plaza.

While I’m not an Apple user, I can appreciate the excitement over such a decision on many fronts. First, this will be only the second Apple Store in Madrid and the first in downtown Madrid. The FIRST Apple Store in Madrid was set-up in Xanadú Shopping Center in Madrid’s outskirts, forcing users and fans to go by car or (multi-line) bus only. Second, this is big for Apple. Surely this will boost business to new Spanish heights. Thirdly, and maybe most importantly, the move has breathed new life into a beautiful building in Old Downtown Madrid, a building which has been empty and decaying for the last 5-years and, frankly, an eyesore for anyone glancing its direction. Now, or soon, the building holding up the neon sombrero-wearing sherry bottle “Tio Pepe” sign will have a fresh, new look.

The building, if not for Apple, would continue being an eyesore, the lower level covered in graffiti and posters pasted on top of one another. They say the lower 2 floors of the newly renovated building will occupy the new Apple Store. The upper floors, as required by city officials, will house a new 3 or 4-star hotel.

The building’s owners, privately held by a Mexican family – the same family which owns the nearby Hotel Regina building next to the Madrid Casino – tried to sell it 5 years ago without success. And now, in hard economic times, its prime location and dilapidated state, and Apple’s ever-deepening pockets, it’s a good time to buy. (although we don’t know yet for how much)

Puerta del Sol, #1 has a total of 7 levels including a large basement covering 6,673 square meters and a central patio. The neon “Tío Pepe” sign atop, a protected Madrid City Landmark, is required to “travel” with any future owners of the building. Whew!

Below Video: YouTube video of the construction of the new Apple Store on Madrid’s Puerta del Sol. Recorded 14 January 2011.

 
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17 Responses to New Apple Store in Madrid Puerta del Sol

  1. Spainbitch says:

    I wonder if they will have it open by the time of the iPad 2 launch..? If they do, I will regard that as sufficient omen and reason to buy one!!

    • MadridMan says:

      I would doubt it. The rumor on the iPad 2 launch is that it’ll be out sometime this spring and the new Apple Store in Madrid won’t be open until the end of 2011 or early 2012. I, not an Apple user, am even considering getting the next iPad when it comes out. Wonder if they’ll drop the price by a hundred Euros – but won’t hold my breath. Amazing the popularity of the (very expensive) iPad 1 what with this worldwide economic “crisis”.

  2. jazz says:

    hope,they don´t remove the neon sign “Tío Pepe”

  3. Por fin! This can’t come soon enough. I’ve had to drive to the Apple Store at Xanadu every weekend for the last three weeks (and I live in SanSe!). It’s driving me mad!

  4. Dolly Marden says:

    Hi,

    Travelling to Madrid in June and planning ahead. Need to know when travelling from airport to Madrid, Hotel Regina, What is best choice. Also,
    when travelling on the bus or Metro, how how bags stowed. I get a bit nervous when bags are not within reach or not secured.

    Thanks

    • MadridMan says:

      Hello, Dolly! (I’m sure you’re sick of hearing that)
      The “best”, fastest, easiest, and most secure way from Madrid Barajas Airport to Hotel Regina – near the Puerta del Sol – is by taxi. It’ll cost you around 30 Euros. This is always the most expensive way.
      There is a new Airport-Downtown bus but it only goes to Plaza de Cibeles/Atocha Train station and from there you’d have to either get the metro or a taxi. Here, luggage is stored in racks near the entrance of the bus. Cost: 2 Euros.
      The metro is a good, cheap option (2 Euros total one way from/to the airport) if you have only hand luggage or a wheeled carry-on. As for stowage, you have your luggage with you at all times – and will have to change metro train lines twice (3 lines total).
      Happy Travels!

  5. Aviel Corchia says:

    Im curious if I can reach an apple store from the airport and back in a 3 hours window?
    Is it possible?

    • MadridMan says:

      The Apple Store in Madrid’s Puerta del Sol won’t be open, probably, until the end of 2012 (or later) so the next closest Apple Store is in the – which is on the opposite side and outside of downtown Madrid. You probably won’t be able to make it there and back in 3 hours, no. But once the Puerta del Sol Apple Store IS open, you can likely make it going by metro or taxi, yes. Metro will take you, maybe, 45 minutes and a taxi about 25 minutes.

  6. Pingback: Madrid Tio Pepe Sign Will Find New Home in Puerta del Sol | Madrid Blog Spain by MadridMan.com

  7. George LaTorre says:

    Cool. madrid has apple store. :) i will visit madrid soon. god bless.

  8. Pingback: Spectacular Madrid Puerta del Sol Rooftop Views | Madrid Blog Spain by MadridMan.com

  9. Robert says:

    And late 2013, still no Apple store opening at Sol…. :-(

    • MadridMan says:

      It’s true. They said it would be in-place again in the Puerta del Sol by the end of the year, but… I don’t see that happening, either.

      • SoHigh says:

        Does this have anything to do with the ancient hospital ruins they found?

        • MadridMan says:

          It does, yes, SoHigh. It has been decided to “cover-over” instead of display the hospital ruins they found under the Apple Store/Old Hotel Paris. The ruins will first be studied and documented beforehand, however, and that has delayed the works.

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