SAN FRANCISCO--Walking through the Marina District section of town here yesterday, I tried to find the local Apple Store, thinking I could determine why my MacBook Pro was having battery issues. The only problem? The store, which I've been to many times, was curiously nowhere to be found.
Today, it all makes sense. According to a news story making the rounds, the store I was trying to find, on Chestnut Street, and possibly at least two others around the country, are temporarily closed. In the case of this store, it seems that the facade had been blacked out in such a way that I didn't even see the familiar glass front.
A call to the Chestnut Street store Friday morning got the following recorded message: The store is "currently closed while we undergo a minor update to the Apple Store. We will reopen on Wednesday, October 5."
NBCBayArea.com's story on the matter said that the closure began September 26 and that a representative of the store explained that it was due to the installation of "new security doors."
Apple conspiracy theorists, of course, are not going to buy that explanation for a second. After all, the company's big iPhone event is scheduled for just a day earlier, so if there was going to be a big redesign inside the store around an expected iPhone 5, this would be the time to do it.
On the other hand, the Chestnut Street store's voice message recommended that those wanting to visit should go to the main San Francisco store instead. So clearly, not all Apple Stores are closed for business.
However, others stores definitely are closed. Apple's Walnut Creek, Calif. store is shut, according to its Web page. There, a note greets potential visitors: "We're closed September 26 - October 3." A call to that outlet produced the same wording about why it's closed--that it's undergoing "minor update"-- as that of the Chestnut Street location in San Francisco, with the only difference being that it says that its doors will open again on October 4.
That reopening date, of course, is the same day as the iPhone event. So perhaps the company has simply decided that the time around the iPhone event is a good time to shutter a few stores for renovations or other work. Its store on University Village Street in Seattle is closed until October 6--two days after the iPhone event--its Web site says.
A call to Apple's corporate public relations department was not immediately returned Friday morning.
Stay tuned to CNET. As we learn more about this, we will update this story.