The act of buying a watch is not one to take lightly, it’s a serious commitment of money and confidence that a brand can deliver on their promise of a high quality timepiece. That’s why many brands seek to make the process of buying a watch as special as the watch itself, whether that be through the boutique experience or something a little more extravagant such as a lounge with a bar. It’s the latter experience that Audemars Piguet provide with their AP House salesrooms and now a new AP House Manchester is opening in in partnership with Watches of Switzerland.
Audemars Piguet are very involved when it comes to the sales of their watches, believing that APs should only be sold from single-brand Audemars Piguet showrooms. That’s why they developed the AP House concept, creating an environment that they can curate entirely as they wish. They take the form of luxury lounges hidden away from the bustle of the street, often only recognisable by a small plaque in the door or a flag hung outside.
There are currently AP Houses in London (which for those in the know is a great, under-the-radar spot for a drink), Bangkok, Barcelona, Hong Kong, Madrid, Milan, Munich, Shanghai, St. Barths, Tel Aviv, Tokyo, New York and Zurich.
Normally AP take control of their houses personally, but for the first time ever they’re placing one in another’s capable hands. Specifically, Watches of Switzerland and AP have announced their intent to create the new AP House Manchester together. It will serve as a new flagship shopping location for the north of England, with a higher allocation of watches compared to other authorised retailers. The fact that it’s being operated by Watches of Switzerland means that there’s the potential for far more AP Houses to be created in future, rapidly expanding the concept across the world.
The project is only in the very early stages of development but considering that the new showroom is due to be created in the St Anne’s area where Watches of Switzerland already have a large presence, it might come sooner than expected. Early forecasts predict AP House Manchester could open as soon as spring next year.
More details at Audemars Piguet.