As we found ourselves walking down Chicago’s magnificent mile on Michigan Avenue —just north of Wacker Drive and a few buildings away from the iconic Gothic Chicago Tribune tower— enjoying a rare sunny day, we stumbled upon one of the most magnificent watch boutiques in the city. The boutique is located on Michigan Avenue close to the corner with Ohio street. Trust us, you just can’t miss the Swiss flag flanked by the U.S. flags blowing in the wind.
Tourbillon is a group of watch boutiques launched by the Swatch Group —the largest watch brand holding in the world— a few years ago and is composed of 22 boutiques in some of the most upscale locations and fascinating cities in the world including New York, Moscow, Las Vegas, Beverly Hills, Geneva, Lugano, St. Petersburg, San Francisco, Seattle, South Coast, Short Hills and St. Barth amongst others.
Chicago’s Tourbillon boutique is a relatively new boutique that opened its doors in December 2012 and in just a few months, has now become a must-visit landmark for watchlifestylers living in Chicago or just visiting. In this boutique, you will find an impressive inventory from Breguet, Blancpain, Glashütte Original, Jaquet Droz, Leon Hatot, Omega, Swatch and Tiffany & Co. Come experience this luxurious and elegant boutique —with one of the most fascinating timepiece
As you head into this fantastic boutique, you will first be greeted by two amazing areas for Breguet and Omega that are almost like mini-boutiques within the boutique. As you walk in, you can’t miss Omega’s Baselworld 2013 novelties that are eye-catching. The Seamaster Planet Ocean 600M GoodPlanet is there with its blue and orange ceramic bezel that would be a perfect fit to match that Chicago Bears jersey that you’ve been wearing since 1985. Now that you’ve finally seen it in person, you like it even more.
As you turn around to continue to walk through the boutique, you can’t miss Breguet’s corner —classy, inspiring and full of 'haute horlogerie' creations. These creations are a living tribute to one of the greatest watchmakers of all time, Abraham-Louis Breguet —the creator of the tourbillon around 1795. As you walk around admiring the displays, you notice the book that is standing in between them and you take a closer look. You are surrounded by masterpieces, some of the most fascinating complications like the Tourbillon, the 'La Musicale' masterpiece, the Classique Grande Complication and even some of the cufflinks in their collection. You then ask one of the friendly, savvy employees to pull out the Classique Grande Complication ref. 5447 in white gold for you to peruse. With it’s grandeur and hand carved 'guilloché' dial, you are just left in awe. The display case back allows for full view of one of the most fascinating and intricately decorated calibres you’ve ever seen in person. Pure perfection right in front of your eyes.
Your next stop is at the Blancpain area —right behind Breguet— where you help yourself to a delicious Lindt chocolate. Savor the chocolate as much as you are savoring this watch shopping experience. You have been in the boutique for fifteen minutes and yet you just don’t want to leave.
Every display and every timepiece you peruse transports you to the 'Vallée de Joux' where these timepieces are carefully handcrafted. As you check out Blancpain’s displays, you notice that almost every reference from the Fifty Fathoms collection is available including the coveted No Radiations Limited Edition watch.
While you are sitting in the ultra comfortable white leather chairs, you are informed that they have one of the rare and very limited Blancpain Chinese Calendar timepieces in stock. You need to see that masterpiece of horology and if it winks at you, you know you’ll have to get if before someone else does.
After drooling over the fascinating Blancpain Chinese Calendar, you hold your breath and decide to think about it as there are still more watches you want to see. As you keep walking towards the back, the Jaquet Droz and Leon Hatot —exclusively available at the Tourbillon boutiques— displays catch your eye. While you admire the beautiful white orchids that flank the Leon Hatot displays, you think about your significant other and what she might like for you to bring back home for her —a piece of jewelry or perhaps a Jaquet Droz Ivory Enamel watch.
As you reach the end of the store, the journey is almost over, but Glasshütte Original, Swatch and Tiffany & Co. are there to get your attention before you make your final buying decisions. As you look around Glashütte Original, you notice the new Senator Panorama Date presented at Baselworld 2013. You’ve been wanting to see this watch in person since the end of April and now looks like it might be time to get it. At the same time, you check the lovely PanoDate PanoReserve.
Finally you’ve made up your mind and today you will be walking out with more than one watch. The friendly staff walks you upstairs to the private lounge area where you sit down and relax in the comfortable and beautiful brown Le Corbusier chairs as you sip down an espresso and savor another Lindt chocolate.
As you are getting ready to leave with your purchases, you take one more look at the fascinating space of the boutique and you give the Blancpain area one last look. Should you also buy that Fifty Fathoms No Radiations Limited Edition before it’s gone? As you leave the boutique fully satisfied with your new purchases, you look back at the tourbillon logo on the door handles and wonder when the new Glashütte Original Pavonina will be in so you can buy it for your significant other.
Tourbillon Boutique Chicago
545 N Michigan Avenue
Chicago, IL 60611
Monday - Saturday 10 am - 6 pm
Sunday 12 pm - 5 pm