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Starbucks opens its biggest cafe yet, 30000 square feet in Shanghai, China

07 December 2017

It's also the largest Starbucks in the world, spanning an area almost twice as large as the next biggest, a Roastery in Seattle that opened three years ago.

The incredible store even features Starbucks' first-ever augmented reality experience where digitally-savvy customers can point their phone at different features around the venue to receive instant information and feedback on anything from the bean to coffee process, to varying brewing methods. The coffee giant even partnered with another retail powerhouse, Alibaba Group, to create Starbucks' first augmented reality experience.

The outlet, which is approximately half the size of a soccer field, was described by Starbucks as a "state-of-the-art premium reserve roastery" and has been specifically created to attract affluent, white-collar Chinese consumers, according to the Financial Times. Starbucks has said it could open as many as 20 to 30 Roastery stores around the world.

The new roastery in Shanghai is expected to enhance Starbuck's reputation as a go-to place for dates and business meetings at a time when some locals argue that the company is losing its premium branding.

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China has become Starbucks' second-largest and fastest growing market.There are more than 3,000 Starbucks stores in China, with 600 in Shanghai alone, and Starbucks plans to increase that number to 5,000 by 2021. Starbucks said that the shape was inspired by an espresso machine.

Despite a long, proud history of tea drinking and the fact that a tall latte costs as much as $4.69 in China, people have taken to coffee and culture of Starbucks with its specialty drinks and free Wi-Fi and bathrooms. At more than twice the size of the original Reserve facility, the Shanghai roastery will be followed by additional Starbucks Reserve roasteries in New York, Chicago, Tokyo and Milan. Customers can watch the green beans as they are roasted, then sent through copper "symphony" pipes (named because of the musical sound the beans make as they travel through them) directly to silos at the coffee bars. The bar is made entirely out of 3-D printed recycled materials, the company said.

There's a team of more than 30 skilled Chinese bakers and chefs who bring artisan baking to life using premium ingredients sourced specifically for each fresh food offering.

Starbucks opens its biggest cafe yet, 30000 square feet in Shanghai, China