Industry / Retail / Watches

Watch Guru Danny Goldsmith Blends Art and Time in New Store


Historically, salons were gathering spaces where people exchanged ideas, talked to intellectuals, and debated the latest criticism. Take that concept, add Danny Goldsmith’s eclectic yet discerning eye for art and watches, and you have his newly opened Florida watch salon.

Goldsmith & Complications in Delray Beach is what happens if a New York kid moves to a Florida resort: It is a bubbly blend of Big Apple cool with a lounge vibe where anyone who loves watches, collects horological art, and wants to talk jewelry feels comfortable staying all day.

“I want to put [Goldsmith & Complications] on the map as a watch destination,” Goldsmith says. “In designing this place, it has all of my touch and taste, which is a little out there. It’s eccentric. It’s what makes me different. I’m a watch collector who just so happens to own a boutique now.”

Think of Goldsmith & Complications as that moment when an art gallery sweeps a traditional jewelry store off its feet. The furniture is curvy and organic, matched only by the bold rug and fantastical wallpaper and decor. The showroom, complete with a custom wet bar, is made for heated discussions as well as watchmaker get-togethers with everyone from the newbie to the established collector.

Samir Shah Danny Goldsmith Ian Happ
From left: Samir Shah, president, Berd Vay’e; Danny Goldsmith, owner, Goldsmith & Complications; and Ian Happ, professional baseball outfielder for the Chicago Cubs (photo courtesy of Goldsmith & Complications) 

Goldsmith says he is still reeling from his big jump from New York to Florida, but he wanted a warmer climate for his wife and son as well as a chance to start his own watch store. He also wanted a location where he can invest in independent brands from around the globe, introducing his clients to not only the products but the makers themselves.

“We are just as passionate about the technical innovation behind Oris and Bell & Ross as we are about the vanguard designs of Urwerk and Purnell,” says Goldsmith, noting that Goldsmith & Complications is planning to become the sole North American retailer for many brands previously unavailable in the United States.

“I like different,” Goldsmith says. “I like a relationship with the watch makers. You can’t always have that with bigger brands. If you’re a smaller maker, maybe you create 150 watches a year, you can connect with them, see their passion, learn about their outside-the-box thinking. You can talk to them or post a photo of their work on Instagram and they respond; they’re that obtainable. That’s a wonderful cycle, and I want to see them grow and show off their talents.”

For example, Goldsmith says he will start carrying Canadian independent watchmaker Bradley Taylor in the fall. He is currently carrying Urwerk, Purnell, Angelus, and Arnold & Son among others. Watch prices range from $1,900 to $530,000, and that’s part of the reason for the shop’s unusual name, Goldsmith says. There’s nothing simple about a watch, and he wants people to have fun with jewelry, much like he does.

Berd Vaye Americas PasTIME
America’s PasTime, Berd Vay’e; $4,000 (Photo courtesy of Goldsmith & Complications)

To illustrate this, Goldsmith bypassed the traditional limited-edition watch release to partner with one of his favorite horological artists. In honor of his store’s grand opening, Goldsmith commissioned a limited-edition artwork of 30 pieces from Berd Vay’e, Manhattan-based artists renowned for incorporating rare components of vintage watches in one-of-a-kind Lucite sculptures.

These sculptures are collaboration with with Ian Happ, Chicago Cubs’ switch-hitter. The result is a Goldsmith & Complications/Berd Vay’e 17-inch mini baseball bat, mounted for a desk, bookshelf, or coffee table. The artwork features a mix of mechanical watch parts, some as old as a century, in exploded view and wooden slivers from Happ’s bats. It’s a tribute to sports, watches, and design, Goldsmith said.

Moving to a new place, opening a store, and exploring retail, which is a nod to his father’s influence and the jewelry industry, is “the best thing I’ve ever done.” Goldsmith says. “It’s my dream and it’s become reality.”

He believes accessories—for men, especially—should be special. “We want everyone to enjoy this great hobby of ours. You work hard for your money, you should get a little hop in your step if you have a watch on that you love,” Goldsmith says.

Top: The interior of Goldsmith & Complications in Delray Beach, Fla., is organic yet bold. (Photo courtesy of Goldsmith & Complications) 

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Karen Dybis

By: Karen Dybis

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