Apple has finally confirmed it will open a retail store in the historic Tower Theatre in Downtown Los Angeles, putting to an end three years of rumor and debate about whether it would occupy that space.
The tech giant plans to refurbish and renovate the shuttered theater at 802 S. Broadway, and will include space for classes and events, in addition to its traditional retail offerings, the Los Angeles Times reported.
It’s unclear when the store will open. The company is filing plans for the site later this week.
The new store will be its first in Downtown L.A., and fourth in L.A. County.
The Deljiani family owns the Tower Theatre, in addition to a few other theaters along the Broadway business district, which has been the recipient of the city’s “Bringing Back Broadway” campaign. The decade-long effort to revitalize that area has had successes and failures.
Earlier this summer, the possibility of Apple moving in there seemed closer to a reality when existing retail tenants were given notices to vacate the 7,650-square-foot site by the end of June.
With its latest outpost, Apple is also marking its big entrance into Hollywood, as it strives to become a content creator, and rival the likes of Netflix and HBO. The iPhone maker announced last year it plans to spend $1 billion acquiring and producing content. It then leased 128,000-square-foot office campus in Culver City.
Apple posted strong quarterly earnings on Tuesday just exceeded a $1 trillion market cap, making it the first publicly-traded American company to do so.
The addition of an Apple store is likely to draw a significant amount of foot traffic to the area, which still struggles for customers. Local landlords and tenants have been reluctant to sign long-term leases recently, choosing instead to see what Apple does. Now with Apple officially signed on, it’s likely landlords could boost rents in the neighborhood, real estate pros say. [LAT] — Natalie Hoberman