IWC, Panerai and A. Lange & Söhne announced today the opening of their new boutiques in Chicago. Situated in Chicago’s coveted Gold Coast Historic District, all three storefronts will be centrally located in the heart of the city at the famed Waldorf Astoria, just a few steps away from Oak Street Beach. This key city is a first for all three brands who have chosen to set down roots in America’s third most populous city because of the passionate collector community and rich culture. At nearly 10 million inhabitants, ‘The Windy City’ attracts an average of 35 million visitors every year. The three boutiques are located at 11 East Walton Street, at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel, and will be operated by Burdeen’s Jewelry. Burdeen’s has served the Chicago area since 1980.
With boutiques firmly established in New York, Las Vegas, East Hampton, Bal Harbour and Beverly Hills, Audemars Piguet will open an exciting new boutique in Atlanta, Georgia. In a natural and auspicious pairing, the brand will partner with The Watches of Switzerland Group for the brand’s latest location in the popular Lenox Square shopping center that will open at the end of July. Since 1959, Lenox Square has been the premier shopping destination for high-end shoppers in the Southeast. Located in the heart of the Buckhead neighborhood of Atlanta, Lenox Square offers an unparalleled shopping experience.
Watch Shopping: Watches of Switzerland Opens Boutique at Encore Boston Harbor. A Memorable Night at Sinatra.
Continuing with their footprint expansion in the U.S., Watches of Switzerland just opened another boutique, this time at the just opened Encore Boston Harbor Hotel. The Encore just opened this past Monday June 24th, 2019 as the first casino in the Boston Metropolitan area. Watches of Switzerland Group has more than 146 showrooms in the UK and the U.S. —including 15 dedicated mono-brand boutiques in partnership with Rolex, TAG Heuer, Omega and Breitling— and has leading presence at Heathrow Airport and 5 online transactional websites. Additionally, Watches of Switzerland Group is proud to be the UK’s largest retailer for Rolex, Patek Philippe, Cartier, Omega, TAG Heuer and Breitling. In the U.S., this is the third boutique that opened up in less than a year and their fifth watch retail operation in this country.
On Saturday, June 15, 2019, After-School All-Stars founder Arnold Schwarzenegger welcomed over 150 philanthropic guests to his private home in L.A. for the seventh annual Arnold Schwarzenegger Westime Charity Night benefiting After-School All-Stars. Westime, the luxury watch and jewelry retailer led by John and Greg Simonian, sponsored the Western- themed event. Through the unwavering commitment of Schwarzenegger and Westime, the annual event has raised $12.8 million over the last seven years, to support free, comprehensive after-school programs for low- income, underserved students across the nation during the hours of 3-6pm.
Watches of Switzerland Group, the leading multi-channel luxury watch retailer in the UK and a leading retailer of luxury watches in selected regions of the U.S., has gone public and commenced its trading on the Main Market of the London Stock Exchange, trading under the ticker WOSG. The market capitalization of the Company will be approximately £647 million at the commencement of conditional dealings.
Watch Shopping: UK's Largest Luxury Timepieces Retailer Watches of Switzerland Opens New Flagship Boutiques in Vegas and SoHo
The UK’s largest retailer of luxury timepieces just opened two brand new flagships in New York City and Las Vegas as they’ve set foot in the U.S. On November 29th, Watches of Switzerland opened their first Watches of Switzerland showroom in New York City at 60 Greene Street, SoHo, followed by the Las Vegas store two days later. Additionally, they will also manage the new Omega and Breitling standalone boutiques at the Wynn Plaza Shops in Las Vegas. On display within the space is a collection of the world’s leading timepiece brands, including Blancpain, Breitling, Breguet, Franck Muller, Girard- Perregaux, Hublot, IWC, Jaeger LeCoultre, Omega, Panerai, Roger Dubuis, Tudor, Ulysse Nardin, Urwerk and Vacheron Constantin.
News: WatchBox Launches as a Platform for Buying, Selling and Trading Pre-Owned Luxury Watches. Danny Govberg and Liam Wee Tay Join Forces.
Industry veterans Danny Govberg —CEO of Govberg Jewelers in Philadelphia— and Liam Wee Tay —former owner of Sincere Fine Watches the oldest watch retailer in Singapore— have united with investor-entrepreneur Justin Reis to transform the pre-owned luxury watch category by uniting the two largest watch markets with a global platform for buying, selling and trading luxury watches under the name of WatchBox.
Watch Shopping Guide: Hong Kong "The Watch Shopping Capital of the World". Easily More Watch Shops than New York, London and Las Vegas Combined.
If you thought Las Vegas, New York or London were really impressive from a watch shopping standpoint, wait till you read this article about Hong Kong, a city that here at WCL we can assertively name: "The watch shopping capital of the world." While Hong Kong is very impressive from many angles, the number of watch shops, watch authorized dealers and watch brand boutiques is simply massive and unlike any other city in the world. After our visit to Hong Kong, we can even venture to say that this city has more watch authorized dealers and watch shops than London, New York and Las Vegas combined.
Experience: 12 Exceptional Timepieces Between $40K and $100K USD to Wrap Up 2016. Wishing You Could Own Them All in 2017.
As the year 2016 comes to an end, we can only hope for more exceptional timepieces that will take our breath away next year. To wrap up the year, we have put together 12 exceptional timepieces we've reviewed here at WCL, for you to wish owning every one of them as you welcome 2017. All these watches are priced above $40K USD and under $100K USD pack a lot of watch for the money.
Since this is the time of giving, we have chosen five of our favorite in-house chronographs for you to gift to that special someone in your life. Not only these five watches come from some of the best manufactures out there, but they are all reasonably priced under $15,000 USD. Furthermore, all of them are powered by in-house calibres with consistent reliable craftsmanship.
Experience: de Boulle. The Largest Patek Philippe Authorized Dealer in the South and Now Also with a Boutique in Houston.
If you live in Texas, the de Boulle name is no stranger to you. Located in the heart of the Park Cities in Dallas and with a newly opened boutique in the River Oaks District in Houston with a fascinating Patek Philippe salon —as we featured it here—, de Boulle is one of those authorized dealers worth paying a visit and talking about.
Zurich is the largest city in Switzerland approximately 25 miles from the German border. Zurich is a very cosmopolitan, affluent city considered one of the top financial centers of the world —home to several global financial companies and banks including UBS and Credit Suisse— and a perfect destination for watch shopping.
Experience: The New Patek Philippe Salon at De Boulle River Oaks District in Houston. A Perfect Evening.
Last Tuesday November 17, 2015, we had the pleasure to attend the celebration of the opening of the new Patek Philippe salon at the new De Boulle location in the ultra upscale River Oaks District in Houston. The River Oaks District, is a luxury retail paradise comparable to the Miami Design District or to Oak Street in Chicago. The new modern development is located on the famous Westheimer Rd. next to the Afton Oaks neighborhood and a block away from Hotel Derek. The River Oaks District is set to become the top shopping destination in Houston with boutiques that include Brunello Cucinelli, Canali, Chopard, Dior, De Boulle, Etro, Giuseppe Zanotti, Intermix, Moncler, Roberto Cavalli, Stella McCartney, Tom Ford, our favorite Vilebrequin swimwear and also our favorite Vietnamese restaurant from New York and Chicago, Le Colonial. After more than a decade without the opening of a new Patek Philippe Salon in the United States, De Boulle presents a unique shopping experience at its new location.
Experience: Grand Opening of the Jaeger-LeCoultre New York City Flagship. A Celestial Night Full of Stars and The Good Life.
This past Tuesday March 3, 2015, we were part of the exclusive celebration that took place in New York City for the official grand opening of the new Jaeger-LeCoultre New York City Flagship Boutique on 701 Madison Avenue. The new boutique is nested right next to Panerai and just a few steps from the Hermès flagship between 62nd and 63rd street. This new Jaeger-LeCoultre boutique clearly conveys what the brand stands for with a very intimate and welcoming layout that is accentuated by its circular showcase underneath a majestic chandelier right next to its main entrance. The grand opening was attended by VIP collectors, friends of the brand, a few select press representatives and also executives of Jaeger-LeCoultre from throughout the world. Friends of the brand Canadian actress Sarah Gadon and British actor Clive Owen also joined the event to celebrate this new home for Jaeger-LeCoultre, officially inaugurated with a ribbon-cutting ceremony alongside Jaeger-LeCoultre's CEO Daniel Riedo and North America President Philippe Bonay.
Experience: Audemars Piguet Boutique Milano. An Intimate Small Boutique but with Very Impressive Inventory.
A quick stop at this amazing boutique is all it takes to be in the presence of some of the most amazing timepieces recently unveiled at the SIHH 2015 by Audemars Piguet. The Audemars Piguet Boutique Milano is nested in one of the most upscale retail areas of the city right on Via Montenapoleone 6, next to Santoni and Camper —two of our favorite shoe brands.
Walking down from Via Manzoni where the Montenapoleone metro station is located —right next to the Armani Hotel—, makes for a nice walk surrounded by the splendor of high end clothing and watch boutiques. As soon as you arrive at the boutique, there are two AP brass plaques flanking the entrance. Even though the boutique is very small, there's no way you can miss the black awning with gold 'Audemars Piguet' on it. If you are coming from Giacomo Mattiotti you are just a block away. With a very inviting decor and a window display full of novelties from the SIHH 2015, including a white gold limited edition Royal Oak Offshore nicknamed 'Goliath', the boutique is awaiting you.
News: Audemars Piguet Opens Boutique at the Shops at Crystals in Las Vegas. A Partnership with Westime.
Audemars Piguet announces the arrival of its third boutique in the United States with the opening of an elegant new location at The Shops at Crystals in Las Vegas, Nevada. The 1,270-square-foot boutique, situated on the first floor between Tom Ford and Louis Vuitton stores showcases an original concept design that captures the 140-year old brand’s core values: origins, artistry and extraordinary relationships.
The new boutique in Las Vegas is the newest project developed between Westime and Audemars Piguet, a partnership that dates back to 1994. “We are proud to further reinforce our relationship with Westime through the opening of the Audemars Piguet boutique at The Shops at Crystals. Las Vegas has always been an exciting market for Audemars Piguet and with the new boutique we are better able to present the brand’s complete collection offering while reaching one of the most diverse international audiences," explained Xavier Nolot, CEO of Audemars Piguet North America.
Without a doubt, London is one of the watch shopping capitals of the world. Our watch shopping journey started right next door to our hotel at the Andaz on Liverpool street. Carr Watches is located next to the exclusive boutique hotel Andaz on 53 Liverpool Street and is open from Monday thru Friday from 9am to 6pm. Carr Watches carries a nice assortment of new and pre-owned timepieces ranging from Audemars Piguet to Rolex, Panerai and everything in between. Interestingly enough, as we walked in, we ran into one of our Instagram followers and someone you probably follow on Instagram under the username Lucky Luciano. At Carr, we were welcomed by several interesting timepieces including a full set Audemars Piguet Royal Oak End of Days in mint condition, a Rolex GMT Master 16750 No Date Spider Dial with purple fading Pepsi bezel and a Panerai Radiomir 1936 California Dial PAM 249 amongst other fascinating watches.
After our brief stop by Carr, we took the tube towards Piccadilly Circus in order to check all the amazing boutiques and authorized dealers located on Old Bond Street and New Bond Street. Getting off the tube on Piccadilly Circus is the easiest way to make it to Old and New Bond Street where the real watch shopping experience takes place. Just a few blocks west of Piccadilly Circus, you'll stumble upon your first stop at the Burlington Arcade where Mappin & Webb and the Jaeger-LeCoultre boutique are located, right on the corner of Old Bond Street and Piccadilly. Mappin & Webb carries a nice selection of brands including Bell & Ross, Breitling, Omega, Rolex and even Patek Philippe amongst others.
As you start heading north on Old Bond Street towards New Bond Street, you will run into an wide array of watch boutiques including two Cartier boutiques, Vacheron Constantin, Omega and Rolex. Not far from the Rolex boutique and the second Cartier boutique, right on the opposite side of the street, located at 170 New Bond Street you will find MARCUS, perhaps the the most exclusive watch store in London and what we like to describe as a sanctuary for Audemars Piguet and haute horlogerie lovers as featured here last month. Next door to MARCUS, you will find the Piaget boutique.
Across the street from MARCUS, you will find the Breguet boutique that is currently being remodeled and temporarily located inside the exclusive Asprey store at the iconic corner of Grafton and New Bond Street. Right around that same block, you will stumble upon Chopard, De Grisogono, Georg Jensen and the Patek Philippe boutique. You can't miss the Patek Philippe boutique because it is flanked by the most beautiful brass sculpture of what we like to think as two watchlifestylers having a good watch talk right outside the boutique sitting on a park bench. The Patek Philippe boutique in London, is one of the only three exclusive boutiques —the other two salons are in Geneva and Paris— operated by Patek and is located right in between Georg Jensen and the prestigious Watches of Switzerland store. Watches of Switzerland is a very large authorized dealer that carries Baume & Mercier, Blancpain, Glycine, Jaeger-LeCoultre, NOMOS Glashütte, Omega, Rolex, SLYDE, Zenith, Rado, Oris, Panerai and Patek Philippe amongst other brands.
Still walking northbound on New Bond Street and not far from Watches of Switzerland, you will find the Hublot and Breitling boutiques, as well as two of our favorite authorized dealers in the world, Wempe and Kronometry 1999. At Kronometry 1999 —located on New Bond Street between Brook and Oxford— you will find a very large selection of haute horlogerie brands including Audemars Piguet, Hautlence, Richard Mille, Romain Jerome, Bovet, Ulysse Nardin, De Bethune, Vacheron Constantin, HYT and Zenith amongst others. Right next door to Kronometry 1999 you will come across Frost of London, the authorized dealer for Franc Vila, Arnold & Son, Maîtres du Temps, Giuliano Mazzuoli, SLYDE, Badollet, Devon, Cvstos and Corum amongst others.
Your last stop on New Bond Street and a must see, should be at the Watch Centre —located at 74 New Bond Street next to Leonidas chocolates. This fascinating store is a pre-owned and vintage watch paradise for those seeking Double Red Sea-Dwellers, Red Submariners, Steve McQueen Explorers, Paul Newman Daytonas, rare dial GMT Masters and even discontinued Audemars Piguet or Panerai watches. During our visit at their small but intimate store, we saw one of the most beautiful Red Subs we have seen in a very long time —complete with box and papers and with the thickest case one can find— along with a gorgeous 1655 Albino and even a rare GMT Master 1675 with United Arab Emirates royal crest insignia dial.
Lastly, if you still have time and energy for more watch shopping —which you probably will— head over to the south Kensington/Knightsbridge area to check the amazing watch department at Harrods of London. At Harrods of London you will not only have one of the best shopping experiences of your life, but you will also be amazed by the inventory and number of watch brands they carry. Some of the brands in their watch department include A. Lange & Söhne, Audemars Piguet, IWC, Panerai, De Witt, Frederique Constant, Richard Mille, Romain Jerome, MB&F, Breitling, Vacheron Constantin, Rolex and Girard-Perregaux just to name a few. While you are at Harrods, make sure you stop by the art gallery inside the store and get a mandatory wrist shot —like the ones at the bottom of this post— next to one of Salvador Dali's sculptures, especially next to the ones of melting pocket watches like those in his famous painting 'The Persistence of Memory'.
Experience: MARCUS Watches in London. A Watch Shopping Paradise for Audemars Piguet and Haute Horlogerie Lovers.
As we prepare to report directly from Geneva during our week at the SIHH 2014, we decided to spend a few days in London. As many of you know, London is considered a must when it comes to watch shopping. When it comes to Audemars Piguet and highly complicated watches, there is no better place to stop by other than MARCUS watches located on 170 New Bond Street. MARCUS is advertised as containing “The most important collection of watches in the World” and we can say that they deliver on that promises. The range of brands they carry is truly formidable, ranging from long-established, high end brands such as Audemars Piguet, Piaget, Girard-Perregaux and Zenith to more recent haute horlogerie brands like Richard Mille, Urwerk, MCT, Hautlence and Greubel Forsey amongst others.
The store was established in its current form by Marcus Margulies whose family company, Time Products, dates back to the early 1960’s when his Father Alexander moved to England from Poland and established a business distributing inexpensive watches imported from the Soviet Union. This company was named Sekonda and is now the UK’s best-selling watch brand. Time Products has worked closely with the Swiss Luxury Watch Industry and is currently the UK distributor for Hublot and Franck Muller. Other brands that have been distributed by Time Products in the UK include Blancpain, Breguet, Girard-Perregaux, Vacheron Constantin and Audemars Piguet which was distributed in the UK, Switzerland and the U.S. for over 15 years.
The store has one of the rarest collections of vintage and antique timepieces in the world. The collection was started in 1989. During the past twenty years it has bought some extremely rare, sometimes unique, pocket and wristwatches, the majority having been produced by the watch companies Time Products represents. The purpose of the collection has always been to support retail customers by promoting the brands when they hold exhibitions. Below you will see a picture of Marcus, the man behind this watch shopping paradise.
As you head into this fascinating boutique you'll experience a very interesting combination of modern and antique decor. The boutique is nestled inside an old building that according to UK laws, its interior can only be modified to certain extent and features like its crown molding or its staircase had to be kept intact. Therefore, you will find a nice combination of the old meeting the new, the same fascinating combo that we find in the rare and exclusive timepieces than can be found here. MARCUS sells some of the most interesting unique piece limited editions including sets and watches like the Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore MARCUS limited edition, the Richard Mille RM028 Divers Set of 3 unique pieces, the Greubel Forsey set of 3 pieces as well as some amazing Urwerks, MCTs, Hublots and Franck Mullers amongst others.
The boutique spreads over four levels of elegant decor, free standing showcases and perfectly designed salons with excellent natural light. The boutique is quite large but very intimate and inviting despite the fact that as soon as you walk in the first timepieces that greet you include a very rare 18K rose gold Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Grande Complication with skeletonized dial of which only 3 pieces were ever made and priced well above $700,000 USD. As you head upstairs you know you are in for a big treat as the Audemars Piguet room awaits you. A salon that includes some of the most fascinating Audemars Piguet timepieces we've ever seen and the largest inventory on display. Now, let's move on to the images and let these do the talking. Below you will see several very hard to find pieces including one of the MARCUS limited editions as well as a exclusive Royal Oak with diamond baguettes and emeralds.
Now meet one of the three limited edition Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshores exclusively created for MARCUS. This one is the Royal Oak Offshore Black DLC Steel Marcus Limited Edition of 50 pieces in blackened DLC steel case with black "Mega Tapisserie" dial, white Arabic numerals, crown and pushers in white, case back engraved with the Marcus M logo and a white rubber strap. You need to see one in person to really fully appreciate it. Just amazing.
As you continue to move upstairs, you are greeted by a beautiful display full of antique watchmaking tools and some fascinating timepieces that left us in awe. Elegance and refinement are the name of the game at this boutique where even a beautiful Asprey leather backgammon set is awaiting there for one to play a quick round with Marcus while watch shopping. On this level you will find a 3-piece set of Greubel Forsey Tourbillons all numbered with the number 7, a Richard Mille RM022 Tourbillon Diamonds Marcus unique piece, a unique Piaget watch with 'cloissoné' enamel case and dial and a unique piece of the fascinating ultra complicated Urwerk UR-1001 Zeit Device pocket watch in blackened platinum instead of the traditional AlTiN treated steel. This Urwerk weighs almost a kilo —2 pounds— of platinum and measures an era in its entirety, from a second to a millennium with a revolving satellite complication with wandering hours, retrograde minutes, revolving satellite calendar with months and dates, day/night indicator, power-reserve indicator, running seconds, “Oil change” indicator for every 5 years, running-time indicator for a century and linear running-time indicator for a millennium.
After you're done some serious shopping upstairs and just in case you have time for some wine and more APs, you might be escorted downstairs to the lower level where an amazing built-in watch display with winders, wine cellar and humidor awaits you. Just in case you didn't find anything you liked upstairs at the Audemars Piguet salon, down here you will find another huge selection of APs including the Royal Oak Offshore Sachin Tendulkar Limited Edition.
As you head back upstairs to the ground level, pay close attention to the antique table where the stairs end, here you will see the amazing Reuge by MB&F Music Machine in its full glory and behind no glass. After an unforgettable experience perusing some of the most exclusive and exceptional timepieces you can find in London and the world, we thank Alex at MARCUS for such a wonderful afternoon and great hospitality. Thanks for making us feel at home.
For more info on MARCUS watches click here.
Watch Shopping: 10 Watches You Can Gift This Season Priced Under $11K USD. A Little Bit of Everything for Almost Everyone.
Whether you want to pamper yourself with a new timepiece or you are just looking to find the perfect watch for that special someone —a true watchlifestyler or not—, these are ten formidable watches you can gift this season. We have included in this list a little bit of everything for almost everyone including a couple of chronographs, a GMT complication, a complete calendar, a watch fitted with a power reserve indicator, a very unconventional looking watch that takes its inspiration from a manometer, a robust diver's watch, the winner of the Revival Prize at the Grand Prix d'Horlogerie de Genève, an upgraded Italian classic and even one of the best examples of watchmaking from Saxony.
The best part is that we have already reviewed them here and all are priced under $11K USD. If you want to check the full reviews by watch, just click on the name of the respective watch and you will be redirected to our review with live pictures.
Tudor Heritage Black Bay ref. 79220R, 41mm stainless steel case, automatic movement, depth rating to 200m, unidirectional rotating bezel, stainless steel bracelet and additional black nylon strap, gilt matte finished dial, Winner of the Revival Prize at the Grand Prix d'Horlogerie de Genève. Sticker Price $3,425 USD. For more info on Tudor click here.
Baume & Mercier Clifton ref. 10055 Complete Calendar, 43 mm stainless steel case, display case back, automatic movement, includes day, date, month and moon phase indicators, black alligator strap with deployant buckle. Sticker Price $4,950 USD. For more info on Baume & Mercier click here.
Glashütte Original Sixties Panorama Date ref. 23947030204, 42 mm stainless steel case, display case back, automatic movement, big panorama date indicator at 6 o'clock, black dial and dark brown alligator strap with pin buckle. Sticker Price $9,200 USD. For more info on Glashütte Original click here.
Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Ultra Thin Réserve de Marche ref. 1378420, 39 mm stainless steel case, display case back, automatic movement, power reserve and date indicators, matte black alligator strap with deployant buckle and only 9.9 mm thick. Sticker Price $9,300 USD. For more info on Jaeger-LeCoultre click here.
JEANRICHARD Aquascope ref. 60400-11B401-11A, 44 mm stainless steel case, automatic movement, unidirectional rotating bezel, vertical satin-brushed finished blue dial with date indicator, depth rating to 300m and stainless steel bracelet. Sticker Price $3,500 USD. For more info on JEANRICHARD click here.
Zenith El Primero Limited Edition Chronograph ref. 03.2092.410/91.C496, limited edition of 500 pieces, 42 mm stainless steel case, display case back, automatic movement, 12-hour chronograph, day, date, month and moon phase indicators, black alligator strap with triple folding clasp. Sticker Price $10,600 USD. For more info on Zenith click here.
Panerai Radiomir Black Seal 3-Day Automatic ref. PAM 00388, 45 mm stainless steel case, display case back, 3-day power reserve automatic movement, black matte sandwich dial with super luminova, date indicator and black alligator strap with pin buckle. Sticker Price $7,700 USD. For more info on Panerai click here.
Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean 600M GMT GoodPlanet ref. 184.108.40.206.03.001 43.5 mm stainless steel case, display case back, automatic movement, GMT function with orange independent hand, rotating ceramic bezel, date indicator and stainless steel bracelet. Sticker Price $8,100 USD. For more info on Omega click here.
U-BOAT opens another Italian landmark in the Ponte Vecchio historical bridge in Florence.
Being present in Florence, capital of the Renaissance, means a lot for all the prestigious brands but even more for Italo Fontana, creative soul behind U-BOAT, and since the beginning standard bearer of the “Made in Tuscany” values.
Italo, born in the near medieval city of Lucca, announces the opening of the U-BOAT third italian flagship store. The boutique, opens its doors in the short and popular pedestrian Ponte Vecchio, the oldest bridge in Florence spanning the River Arno. It is one of the few remaining bridges with houses built upon.
The opening follows the opening of the Italian boutiques in Milan, Corso Como and also overseas with the recent launch of its 18th boutique in the fashionista Nathan Rd. in Hong Kong.
For more info on U-BOAT click here.