The new Dubai Apple Store features a design that deals with the unique situation of the desert cosmopolis. As anyone who's even taken a trip down to the Florida Gulf Coast — let alone the Persian Gulf — knows, the sun can be a brutal master, and the city of Dubai is hardly exempt. Architects thus have to come up with creative methods for protecting people from the rays, and the Dubai Apple Store does just that.
Rather than opting for a monolithic, windowless structure that blocks out the sun completely, international firm Foster + Partners' design finds the best of both worlds. The exterior of the building is surrounded by filigreed carbon-fiber shades, nicknamed 'solar wings,' that keep the sun out during the day. In the evening, these wings slide along tracks and fold open, giving occupants a sparkling view of the illuminated Arabian skyline.