Apple's UAE stores to open on 29 October
Cupertino says 'Marhaba' with dual launch of brick-and-mortar stores at Mall of the Emirates and Yas Mall
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Apple's much-awaited brick-and-mortar stores in the UAE will open for business on 29 October.
The company will be staging a dual launch for the stores, with one opening on the top floor of Dubai's Mall of the Emirates, and the other at Yas Mall in Abu Dhabi. These will be the first physical stores that Cupertino has opened in the Middle East.
The announcement came in the form of two barriers that have been erected at the store fronts in each mall. Both feature calligraphy designs which say ‘Marhaba' (‘Hello') in Arabic script. The designs were done by Arabic calligrapher Samir Sayegh.
In small lettering on the Mall of the Emirates board, the date of 29.10.15 can be seen.
"A collaboration with master calligrapher Samir Sayegh, extending out first hello to the city of Dubai," is also seen on the board.
The announcement flies in the face of previous rumours around Apple's first Dubai store. Previously, it was thought that the store would be located at the site of Mall of the Emirate's old cinema, which was boarded up earlier in the month upon the opening of the new cinema. However, the board is located on the top floor of the mall, a fair distance away from the old cinema.
What's more, the rumours said that the Dubai shop would be the biggest Apple Store in the world. Whether this will turn out to be true remains to be seen.
Either way, the new store announcements come just a week after Apple quietly updated its UAE website, saying that the Apple Watch will be made available in the country from October 22. Presumably, this announcement was made in anticipation of the store openings, as Apple has previously said that it wants customers to try out the Watch in-store before making a decision on it.