Remembering Gary Allen, Apple stores’ most devoted overnight camper

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Gary Allen at Apple's store in Tysons Corner, Virginia, just outside Washington, D.C.
Gary Allen at Apple's store in Tysons Corner, Virginia, just outside Washington, D.C.
Photo: Gary Allen

It’s with great sadness that I heard about the passing of Gary Allen this morning. I met Gary several times over the years and called and corresponded with him many times. He ran IFOAppleStore.com, by far the best website about Apple’s incredible chain of retail stores, a topic that proved a rich hunting ground, given its size, influence and global reach. Gary had an encyclopedic knowledge of Apple’s stores and his site — now sadly offline — was an incredible resource.

Gary was also known for traveling all over the word to attend store openings, often camping out the night before. He visited London, Paris, Tokyo, Istanbul, Beijing and many, many other cities. Some saw this as eccentric, but the point was not the store opening itself, but the chance to socialize with a bunch of like-minded people. To get some idea of his devotion to his hobby, check out his Twitter and Flickr feeds, still online and full of pictures from his travels.

I wrote a profile of Gary a few years ago that is now also offline, so I’m resurrecting it below.

Apple to build new flagship store on Chicago’s Magnificent Mile

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Apple's looking for a new home in Chicago.
Apple's looking for a new home in Chicago.
Photo: Zeller Reality

Apple is planning to open a magnificent new flagship store in the heart of Chicago, according to a new report that claims the iPhone maker has zeroed in on 401 N. Michigan Ave. Apple already has one retail store on Michigan Avenue, but supposedly plans to shut down that one and move a half-mile south to the southern tip of the Magnificent Mile.

Secret Apple Watch boutique is under construction at Paris’ fanciest store

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Photo: Kaysgeog/Flickr CC
The Galeries Lafayette is getting a special visitor. Photo: Kaysgeog/Flickr CC

Apple Watch isn’t just a techie gadget. It’s a fashion item.

To drill that point into everyone’s heads during launch, it looks like Apple is setting up a special booth at one of the fanciest high-end department stores in Paris: Galeries Lafayette Haussmann.

Construction on a special booth at Galeries Lafayette began a few weeks ago, according to Mac4Ever. There’s no official word that the structure is for the Apple Watch, but the timing, location and large white walls all point to Apple.

Take a look at the site: