Google chose New York as the location for its first-ever physical retail store—and we're not surprised. The company made the announcement yesterday, revealing that the aptly named Google Store will open this summer in Chelsea, where the brand's headquarters currently are as well.
Reminiscent of how the Apple Store works, the new destination will allow customers to browse through a selection of Google products while also consulting with experts to potentially troubleshoot an issue or discuss future purchases. New Yorkers will also be able to place online orders and pick them up at the brick-and-mortar shop at a future date.
"The Google Store Chelsea will be part of our urban campus in the Chelsea neighborhood, which is home to many of our 11,000+ Google NYC employees," the company writes in an official press release announcing the news. "Google has been in New York for the last 20 years and we view the store as a natural extension of our longtime commitment to the city."
"I could have sworn I had been inside a Google store in New York already!" you might be saying to yourself right now, and you wouldn't be entirely wrong: the company has set up a series of pop-up shops across the city in the past, but this newest project marks its very first brick and mortar retail space in the world.
Of course, given the pandemic-fueled new world order, prospective visitors can expect a different shopping experience than what they might be used to. "Many customers still want to experience hardware before they buy it—and learn what it feels like, sounds like and looks like in their hand or on a desk," reads the press release. "[But] the health and safety of customers and store team is our top priority, and we've built our store and shopping experience with that in mind and an eye towards the future." Following consultations with both local and national authorities, the staff might change in-store guidelines moving forward but, as of now, shoppers will be required to wear masks, sanitize their hands and social distance while inside. Shared spaces will be cleaned multiple times a day and there will also be capacity restrictions in place.
That being said, the official start of summer is still a few weeks away and, if the past months are any indication, COVID-19-related recommendations are in constant flux. We're just excited to go shopping for now.