Apple Opens Massive Store at CF Toronto Eaton Centre [Photos]

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By Craig Patterson and Jessica Finch

Apple has opened a large Canadian storefront at CF Toronto Eaton Centre in downtown Toronto. The store replaces a considerably smaller unit upstairs that opened in the shopping centre in 2006. 

The new store’s interior features Terazzo flooring and stone walls — the CF Toronto Eaton Centre location is the first in Canada to be refurbished with a non-metallic design that is found in many of Apple’s stores globally. The ceilings in the store feature lighting to offset lower ceiling heights by making them feel taller than they are. Unique entry doorways slide open sideways as per photos in this article. 

The new store features shopping “Avenues” along store walls that feature some of the most popular Apple-enabled accessories that have been curated for customers to try out. A 20-foot wide video wall inside The Forum is utilized for ‘Today at Apple’ sessions. Customers can sign up online. 


Apple says that it is investing in its stores. In 2019, six stores were updated to offer ‘The Forum’, which is an open area for customers to congregate and participate in the free ‘Today at Apple’ sessions that include instructions on photography, art and design, music, and coding, for example. More than 80,000 people in Canada participated in Today at Apple sessions in 2019, which also includes sessions for teachers, entrepreneurs, and kids, including ones especially designed for kids celebrating this week’s Computer Science Education Week. 

The other Canadian Apple store locations offering The Forum include Yorkdale Shopping Centre and CF Sherway Gardens in Toronto, CF Carrefour Laval and Quartier DIX30 in suburban Montreal, CF Market Mall in Calgary, and at CF Richmond Centre in suburban Vancouver. More are expected to be rolled-out in 2020. 


The new CF Toronto Eaton Centre Apple store spans more than 14,000 square feet on ‘Level 2’ of the massive shopping complex, which sees more than 53 million annual visitors. The store is located in retail spaces formerly housing Abercrombie & Fitch, Baby Gap, and Scotch & Soda (Abercrombie & Fitch moved across the way several months ago). The former Apple store space measured 4,977 square feet and was located directly above the new store on ‘Level 3’. 

For the CF Toronto Eaton Centre lease deal, Apple was represented by JLL along with the Master Broker who worked on the deal, Open Realty Advisors of Dallas, TX. Cadillac Fairview is the landlord for CF Toronto Eaton Centre. 

Apple’s first store in Canada opened at Toronto’s Yorkdale Shopping Centre in May of 2005. The CF Toronto Eaton Centre location was the second in Canada when it opened in May of 2006. 


When the CF Toronto Eaton Centre store first opened, it had 42 employees. The new store employs 325 staff, which is comparable to a large department store. Staff in the new Toronto Apple store speak 28 languages. 

One service no doubt appreciated by consumers is in-store assistance with Personal Setup — that includes help with new devices such as setting up email, learning tips and tricks to improve productivity, or having our team introduce them to services like Apple Music or useful apps on the App Store. Customers can receive free technical support from Apple’s team of ‘Geniuses’. With more than double the space dedicated to retail, the CF Toronto Eaton Centre store will be able to more comfortably host shoppers seeking services which are considered key to Apple’s retail experience. 

Apple now has 29 standalone stores in Canada, which employ about 4,300 staff. Many stores are located in busy shopping centres across the country, and two standalone flagships are said to be in the works as the company continues to expand its retail presence in Canada. 

The company generates billions of dollars annually and employs more than 139,000 people globally. Innovation is the key to Apple’s continued success.

Apple CEO Tim Cook recently sat down with Salesforce co-founder, Marc Benioff, at this years Dreamforce convention in San Francisco. They spoke about the pillars that have helped sustain Apple’s continued success.


Cook and Benioff began by discussing their partnership, talking briefly about an updated app for developers who build Salesforce apps on Apple’s iOS.

The conversation quickly turned, however, to the foundational values elevating Apple above the rest: innovation, sustainability, privacy, and equality. Cook explained how Apple has integrated sustainability into the framework of its business model, ensuring that its carbon footprint is minimized and the company doesn’t contribute to the current environmental crisis.

Today Apple officially operates on 100 per cent renewable energy, with the next goal focusing on ensuring that all Apple suppliers also operate on the same scale. Cook explained how all Apple products are derived from recycled materials, “we take nothing from the earth…we are only here for a short time…have to be good stewards of the earth.”


Cook said that Apple has always strived to deeply understand its carbon footprint. It has made considerable efforts to reduce its internal footprint, while also attempting to combat the carbon footprint of millions of Apple users, manufactures, and transportation services employed by the company. The goal is to eliminate Apple’s carbon footprint totally, to which Cook addressed any skeptics by noting that people thought a company on Apple’s scale couldn’t operate whole on renewable energy, as it now does.

Rejecting the idea that only rich companies have the resources to drastically reduce their carbon footprint, Cook says, “we didn’t want to do something only a rich company can do. We don’t want people to copy our product, but we do want people to copy our values”.

Cook spoke about the issue of privacy and trust, a highly topical issue addressed holistically at Salesforce’s Dreamforce. Trust is quickly becoming “the currency of trust” and Cook made a point of stating that Apple views privacy as a fundamental human right.

“So many people confuse innovation with change…but both of our companies recognize that innovation is actually about making things better,” Cook said early on in the conversation. He continues to point out the importance of innovating for a greater good and not just for the next product. “It’s about making the world’s best products but also enriching peoples’ lives.” The take home message? It is possible for a company to continue innovating while still operationalizing and holding firm to its integral values.

Article Author

Craig Patterson
Craig Patterson
Located in Toronto, Craig is the Publisher & CEO of Retail Insider Media Ltd. He is also a retail analyst and consultant, Advisor at the University of Alberta School Centre for Cities and Communities in Edmonton, former lawyer and a public speaker. He has studied the Canadian retail landscape for over 25 years and he holds Bachelor of Commerce and Bachelor of Laws Degrees.

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