ATLANTIC CITY — Kelly NcNulty had an iPhone emergency Saturday, so she zoomed over to the Apple store inside the Playground Pier on the Boardwalk.

McNulty, 41, of Absecon, will not find it so easy in the near future to get her iPhone problems fixed by an Apple technician in person, because the store at 1 Atlantic Ocean in the resort will close June 30.

“I just learned the Apple store is closing this morning, and I am super disappointed, both for the employees and the people in our area,” said McNulty, who added she was grateful to be able to go to the resort location. “In the future, it seems we will have to travel to Marlton or Cherry Hill, which is extremely inconvenient for anybody that lives in the Atlantic County area.”

Apple Inc. announced Friday it is closing its retail store here. Fifty-two people will lose their jobs.

The message at The Pier section, which was the name before the Playground, of the Apple website says, “Thank you for over 11 great years. The last day we will be open is June 30.”

Hedilfredo Gomez, 28, will have to start keeping better track of headphones.

Gomez said he comes to the Apple store in the resort three times monthly, usually to buy accessories. He has three sets of headphones, one in his car, one in his room and one on him, but he frequently loses the ones that he carries on him.

Gomez was at the Apple store Saturday afternoon to buy a headphone jack. He was wearing an Apple watch and listens to music on his iPhone 7 plus.

“I have been coming here since it opened,” said Gomez, of Pleasantville. “It will be such a hassle not having it here in Atlantic City. Where are the other Apple stores? ... It will be a real big hit, not just for me, but for a lot of my fellow brothers and sisters.”

Besides the stores in Marlton and Cherry Hill, the next closest Apple store is in Freehold to the north, inside the Freehold Raceway Mall in Monmouth County.

“Due to a sharp decline in tourism and visitors to the area, we have made the difficult decision not to extend our lease,” an Apple spokesman said in a statement. “We are offering all of the store’s employees other jobs within Apple.”

The closing of the Boardwalk store will be inconvenient for more than just South Jersey residents.

Michael Fanjoy, 41, of Reading, Pennsylvania, has visited other South Jersey shore communities, but Saturday was his first time in the resort. He stopped in the Apple store to check out the iPod touch in person.

“For us, the only other one that we know of is down toward us, like King of Prussia or the Philadelphia area, so that’s kind of far,” Fanjoy said.

Staff Writer

Twenty years as a staff writer in the features department, specializing in entertainment and the arts at The Press of Atlantic City.

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