A couple weeks ago my beloved iMac started show signs of age. It could barely keep up with my photo editing, and I knew its days were numbered. So I set out to get a new one. Not too long ago Apple announced they were introducing new colored iMacs. My millennial heart skipped a beat. I remember when the first colored iMacs were released and wanted one oh so badly, and now I could live that dream. When it came to shopping and seeing the colors in person we visited the newly opened Apple store in downtown LA, because well, you’ll see…
Apple stores are normally known for their walls of glass, and stark white walls, but walk around downtown Los Angeles and you’ll spy an Apple store that is quite the opposite, with ornate statues, clock tower, and gleaming gold accents, along with a long blade sign reading “Tower.” So, why is this Apple store so different than the rest? That’s because it didn’t start out as an Apple Store, it was originally the Tower Theatre, in fact it was LA’s first cinema to be wired for talkies.
The first theatre designed by S. Charles Leo, the Tower Theatre opened its doors in 1927 as a silent movie house with the film The Gingham Girl. However soon it became the first theatre LA to be wired for sound. It was here Angelinos first saw and heard The Jazz Singer and realized Hollywood was about to change forever. It was also one of the first air-conditioned buildings in LA.
After a handful of name changes over the decades, the Tower Theatre shuttered in 1988, becoming an elegant yet haunting filming location for various films and series, such as David Lynch’s Mulholland Drive, the exterior was used as a London theatre in the 2006 film The Prestige, it stood in for a Berlin movie house in yet another 2006 flick, The Good German, and became Italian restaurant Club Figaro in the so bad, but so good 2013 Gangster Squad. It’s during this time, and up until Apple took over that the theatre’s interior was very dark, with rich wood tones and red painted walls.
Apple announced their plans to take over and restore the Tower Theatre in August of 2018. The restoration process took three years, and an undisclosed amount of money. Historical photos, architecture drawings, 3D scans, and forensic paint analysis all aided in the theatre’s transformation. Over the years parts of the bronze railings were broken and went missing. The restoration team made molds of remaining pieces and recast them to replace the missing elements. They also recreated the top of the clock tower, which had been damaged in an earthquake and then removed in 1971. The blade “Tower” sign was yet another element recreated, of course with an Apple touch, with the tech company’s logo at the very top.
Opening June 24, 2021, Tower Apple became another perfect example of how gorgeous and historic buildings can be adapted for today’s needs. While the screen no longer plays host to film stars, a new one was put it with some seating in front as the store is more than just a store, as it also hosts programs and events. Those in need of help from the in-house tech team can visit the balcony, which is now home to the Genius Bar. Also upstairs you can spy some original theatre seats!
So which iMac did I decide upon? I got the pink and red one. Pink is a very soothing color for me, and about a year and a half ago I got new office furniture that was also pink, and it matched perfectly!!