I had the pleasure to recently visit the new Audemars Piguet Boutique located at The Bal Harbour Shops in Bal Harbour, Florida. AP originally opened their boutique in the very same Bal Harbour Shops in 2006, and operated out of the same location until finding a new space at the other end of the mall. This new boutique location opened in May. AP announced the opening on their website here:
The exterior facade is clean and classy with a touch of bling. The polished brass really catches the eye.
Our favorite logo prominently displayed:
The interior is very contemporary and beautifully appointed.
Angled surfaces are an underlying theme throughout the new architecture. The wood panels are very clean. The design vernacular has been carried through to the watch displays and even the watch trays. It is an all new design incorporated by AP.
The lighting is quite good throughout the layout. Not necessarily the best for shooting photos of watches, but perfect for a customer to interact with the staff and view timepieces.
Behind the main counter area is a very large paneled screen with constantly changing images. A few shots of the Vallée de Joux made me feel like I was there again.
The entire main counter / bar area appears to be floating and is lit from below. One of my favorite design details of the new boutique is the cutout in the floor for a landscape arrangement of rocks and moss.
And repeated again under a cantilevered display case:
One great aspect of the new layout is the numerous areas provided for boutique staff and client interaction. There are lots of areas where a client can have a private conversation or viewing of a timepiece.
The flat screen in this area had some great videos showing the manufacturing of an AP timepiece.
Another more private area towards the rear of the boutique:
So many of the accessories and imagery conjure up the feeling of being at the AP Manufacture in Le Brassus, Switzerland. Here we see an original watchmaker’s rounding-up lathe. It is used for cutting or reshaping the teeth on a watch wheel.
Some very interesting pieces on display:
In normal AP fashion, all guest are treated very well, and are frequently offered coffees and other drinks. These little cookies are very good. I had to hurry my photo to capture all of the varieties as the coffee flavored one kept disappearing off of the trays (this might have been the work of a fellow Purist, I really cannot say!).
And you just might catch other professionals in action at the new boutique (aside from all the staff, who are as professional as it gets). I was very pleased to spend some time with Timezone moderator Howard Parr. Howard is a great friend of mine and was also visiting the new boutique for the first time. You should recognize the subject of his photo here from recent topics
Overall, I was thoroughly impressed with the new AP Boutique in Bal Harbour. As a residential designer, I appreciated the attention to detail and seeing the design themes extended throughout the boutique. It is a very inviting atmosphere, much more than the older location. I think it is reasonable to expect this sort of environment when shopping for high end luxury goods, and AP’s execution here in Bal Harbour is as good as I have encountered.
The staff are lead by Boutique Manager Francina Pimentel Butler and AP Retail Director Jasmine Bapic. You will also be very pleased to meet David, Indira, and Ligia. The boutique’s technical advisor, Jonathan, was not there during my visit, so I will look forward to meeting him during my next trip to Miami. If you are in the area, make it a point to stop in and say hello. They have an incredible collection of highly coveted AP timepieces to look over, and the new venue makes for a very satisfying experience.
Here is the contact information:
Audemars Piguet Boutique9700 Collins Avenue, #159Bal Harbour, FL 33154ph# 305-864-6776
And a link to the boutique on AP’s website: www.audemarspiguet.com
This message has been edited by MichaelC on 2013-10-09 19:14:46
I didn’t know you were friend with Howard. A cool guy I had the pleasure to meet several times.
NicolasAnd you and Howard snuck me in to see the JLC novelties! An unexpected surprise for me.
Like many – including you and I – we frequently know each other online for years before we get to meet in person. And that is always a great moment.
If I were there, all the macaroons would have been missing 😛
This Bal Harbour Boutique has a different style and feel when compared to the NYC Boutique. Guess it’s design is more suited for Florida I guess?
You can expect to see a similar design employed for all future boutiques as well as those that are selected for updating or remodels. As an original client of the Bal Harbour Boutique, I am very excited that this location was chosen to debut the new look. It is really spectacular and “so AP’.
Thanks for taking us along the tour, Michael.
One thing that I enjoy a lot from this new design is how they display their vintage pieces. I really appreciate the brands that are proud of their heritage, thus broadening the scope of potential clients, as they clearly send out the message that they also welcome the vintage collectors. Kudos to them!
AlexI did not want to leave. Of course, my favorite goods were on display all over the place 😉
Without question, part of the design criteria is “bringing the manufacture to the boutique”, as Xavier Nolot stated. The history of the brand is a big part of that, and seeing vintage pieces, tools, and photographs confirms that importance to the client.
Hope to visit next month. It is just missing OA but I guess he is just a few doors down at another Boutique.
JerryWI think OA has been in your neck of the woods quite frequently lately opening a new store there…New boutique is indeed lovely. Even better than the space is the staff. Wonderful crew they have assembled in Bal Harbour.Francina and Jasmine have been there a very long time, and have always provided great leadership and stability. It is a great group of people there.
Don’t be shy Michael, I saw you going for those.
Great report. Thanks.
Are you sure that is the way you remember it?? We can ask the gentleman at the boutique who had to keep replacing the coffee macs!!No message bodyNo message bodyOne of the most beautiful watch shops I have visited.
Wish I saw you there.No message body