Madison Avenue Watch Week, the unofficial New York Fashion Week of the luxury horology world, will celebrate its fifth anniversary April 20–25 with a schedule of events and product reveals.
Thirteen of the world’s top luxury watch retailers and brands will publicly preview their newest wares, many of which were unveiled to the trade at the Baselworld fair this past week.
Brands participating this year include A. Lange & Söhne, Chopard, David Yurman, de Grisogono, Fabergé, F.P. Journe, Georg Jensen, Hublot, Jaeger-LeCoultre, John Varvatos, Montblanc, Panerai, and Vacheron Constantin.
The Madison Avenue Business Improvement District organizes the annual event, which is sponsored by the Wall Street Journal and boasts its own website featuring a calendar of in-store happenings. The organization is charged with handling issues of commerce between 57th and 86th streets on the iconic street.
Madison Avenue Watch Week took shape roughly six years ago when the organization noticed “a watch explosion on Madison Avenue,” says Amy Rosi, president of Aros Communications, which handles public relations for the event. “The street really became an epicenter—all of the sudden we had dozens of watch brands and jewelry retailers [such as Graff Diamonds and Cartier] who also had watches.”
The idea of “creating a fashion week for watches,” quickly arose, she adds, and “it made sense for it to always happen after Baselworld, where so many brands debut their new watches. We invite the stores to bring over the new watches they just showed—to give [consumers] a chance to see them and sometimes even put in an early order before they’re available to the public.”
This year’s Watch Week will feature events ranging from dinners and breakfasts to product previews and watchmaking demos. “Some things are for the public, and some are private events,” notes Rosi, who’s a cofounder of Watch Week. “But they’re not that private—you can request an invite through the website.”
Among the shiny new timepieces set to make their U.S. debuts are de Grisogono’s Instrumento Uno Annual Calendar watch, F.P. Journe’s Nouvelle Octa Lune platinum 40mm watch, and Jaeger-LeCoultre’s Geophysic 1958 Boutique Edition watch.
Also included on the calendar: a showcase of new “novelties” and a gift with purchase at Montblanc; an celebration at Jaeger-LeCoultre in honor of Earth Day’s 45th anniversary, hosted with UNESCO; an educational workshop at the Vacheron Constantin boutique; and a session with a master watchmaker at the Hublot store, which will include a chance for consumers to “try their hands at deconstructing their famous Unico movement,” says Rosi.