Recession or no recession, customers have kept lining up to buy iPhones and other Apple products, Bloomberg reports. Apple’s store revenues grew 2.5% over the first six months of 2009, even as retail sales overall fell 9.2%. In New York, where boutiques on Fifth Avenue are largely deserted, the Apple store enjoyed a 22% surge in traffic in the second quarter, making it the highest-grossing store on Fifth Avenue, probably the biggest grosser of all time.
The Fifth Avenue store is estimated to pull in annual sales of more than $350 million—the . equivalent of selling a Mercedes-Benz C300 sedan per square foot, Bloomberg notes. The iPhone accounts for a huge chunk of those sales, but analysts say the store has more going for it than a must-have gadget. Apple keeps the store overstaffed, ensuring attentive service. It’s also open 24 hours a day, which an Apple exec says pulls in New York’s late-night denizens.