Watches of Switzerland – A new time and place for Brighton’s leading luxury watch retailer
Not only is history being made through the creation of the prestigious new Hanningtons Lane development, recreating a historic part of Brighton’s famous Lanes, but global brand Watches of Switzerland have relocated to a new luxurious showroom there, marking their ongoing commitment to the city’s retail scene.
Previously located in Ship Street, the move increases floor space to over 1985ft² and is now home to an expanded range of luxury timepieces. Whether you buy one of these prestigious watches as an investment, a collector’s piece, or simply because you love it, each one has its own story or historical relevance, as the Watches of Switzerland team will explain when you visit.
Once nicknamed the “Harrods of Brighton”, the long-established and popular department store Hanningtons occupied the site until its closure in 2001, with an unbroken history of trading for nearly 200 years, starting from a single shop unit. In the intervening years, the site was split into a variety of multi-faceted stores from chocolatiers to restaurants, independents to international and national retailers, all contributing to Brighton’s joyful eccentricity.
At over 1985ft², the showroom sits within the redeveloped site on North Street, close to the entrance to the new high-end retail area of Hannington Lane. It brings a unique shopping experience that includes an unparalleled collection of leading timepieces from longstanding Watches of Switzerland brand partners – Rolex, OMEGA, Breitling, TAG Heuer, Hublot, Longines and Pre-owned watches. They are proud to have also now added Bremont, Baume & Mercier and Tissot to their offering.
The design of the showroom allows great flexibility to introduce new concepts from luxury watch makers catering for their clients’ diverse needs, including a large dedicated branded area for Rolex.
Showroom Manager John O’Connor, who has been with the company since March 2012, commented at the relaunch party: “It’s a privilege to offer the highest level of client care alongside the very best in luxury watches here in Brighton. The new showroom enables us to bring more exclusive, limited edition pieces along with holding many client events. Everyone has been so positive, with some lovely comments about the team, the showroom and, of course, the watches!”
The team at Watches of Switzerland are particularly excited to present a brand new brand to the store; Bremont, an award-winning British company producing beautifully engineered chronometers from their HQ in Henley-on-Thames.
From 2002 they have embarked on a journey to make beautifully crafted pilot’s watches of exceptional quality. Inspired by a love of flying historic aircraft, of watches and all things mechanical, their timepieces had to be tested beyond the normal call of duty. The watches in their core range are all chronometer rated and they are one of the few companies offering a three-year warranty on every product. Immensely precise, reliable and durable, Bremont watches are hand-built in limited numbers.
Each is designed to appeal to those who share their passion for – and appreciation of – the innovation and mastery behind a beautiful mechanical wristwatch. The company’s co-founders are brothers Nick and Giles English, who will be meeting Watches of Switzerland clients later in the year at an exclusive in-store event.
Watches of Switzerland is a globally recognised modern, leading retailer of the very best luxury watch brands in the world including Rolex, Patek Philippe, Audemars Piguet, Blancpain, A. Lange & Sohne, Vacheron Constantin, Panerai, Piaget, Hublot, Zenith, Cartier, Omega, Tag Heuer and Breitling.
In 2014 they launched their “Golden Triangle” with the opening of their flagship showroom at 155 Regent Street, London – Europe’s largest showroom devoted to luxury watches – a feat of both staggering design and horological excellence – followed by the launch of their showroom in Oxford Street in October 2015 and Knightsbridge in June 2016.
In 2017 Watches of Switzerland went international opening its first showroom and taking over the management of the Rolex Boutique at the Wynn Resort in Las Vegas.
In November 2018, Watches of Switzerland opened its first flagship showroom in Greene Street, Soho, NYC, followed by a second flagship showroom in Hudson Yards, New York, in March 2019.
In the Wynn Las Vegas, they relocated their Watches of Switzerland showroom to the Wynn Esplanade and in addition to the Rolex Boutique, also manage the Omega and Breitling Boutiques in the Wynn Plaza.
Founded in 1924, Watches of Switzerland has been retailing the world’s finest watches for over 90 years. The company began trading as a mail-order business under the name G & M Lane on Ludgate Hill, London, and now has 15 showrooms in leading retail destinations across the UK, including London, Manchester, Glasgow, Birmingham, Brighton and Cardiff. They also have a strong presence in Terminals 2, 3, 4 and 5 at Heathrow Airport including three independent Rolex Boutiques andan online presence in both the UK (watches-of-switzerland.co.uk) and the US (watchesofswitzerland.com).
This year, in celebration of 100 years of retail, Watches of Switzerland have partnered with Rolex UK to provide 100 watches each with a commemorative engraving to mark the anniversary of 100 years of doing business together.
The Watches of Switzerland Group and Rolex will each donate £1,000 for every watch sold, which will be donated to support The Prince’s Trust, a charity working with young people aged 11 to 30 across the UK. Sales of the limited-edition watches will therefore achieve £200,000 for the Trust.
The Watches of Switzerland Group is the UK’s largest luxury watch retailer, operating inboth the UK and US, comprising four prestigious brands; Goldsmiths (UK), Mappin & Webb(UK), Watches of Switzerland (UK and US), and Mayors (US), with complementary jewellery offering.
The Watches of Switzerland Group has 128 core showrooms across the UK and US(which includes 20 dedicated mono-brand stores in partnership with Rolex, TAG Heuer, OmegaandBreitling) and a leading presence in Heathrow Airport’s Terminals 2,3, 4 and 5 as well as five online transactional websites.
Mappin & Webb holds Royal warrants as goldsmiths, silversmiths and jeweller toHer Majesty The Queen and silversmiths to His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales, plus the Mappin & Webb master jeweller has been Crown Jeweller, Custodian of the Crown Jewels ofHer Majesty The Queen since2012.