It was November 2010 when a huge party was given in Hong Kong, that lasted two days;
Cartier re-opened her Flagship Boutique!
Way back in 1970, Cartier decided to open her first store in Asia, in the Prince’s building, on Chater Road, Hong Kong’s most exclusive shopping boulevards.
This really was the first Cartier Boutique in Asia!
At that time the total floor space was much smaller, but last November after the radical renovation and expansion, 900 square meter, divided over three floors and a facade of sparkling glass of 17 meters high, was presented to the public.
Two floors for the Store itself and the lower floor for the Service department, where maintenance on watches and clocks is being done.
Cartier occupies quite a large part of the famous Prince’s building, that also gives home to famed brands like Chopard, Piaget, Vertu, Berluti, J.P. Journe, Chanel,
van Cleef & Arpels, Panerai, Alfred Dunhill, IWC and others.
The atmosphere inside, when you have passed the spacious marble hall way,
reminded me ride away of the Flagship Store in Paris; architect Bruno Moinard, responsible for the complete concept, did an incredible job, by creating so much privacy in his design.
Little corners where one can sit, VIP rooms for clients that prefer to be alone with their sales person, in short, some of the things that made the Paris Boutique so special, were implemented in his design concept.
Then there is the bridal room, with an incredible collection.
Bridal rooms are actually quite common for Cartier in Asia and here we see how markets differ over the world, since in Europe they are much harder to find.
And very important, the watch room (pictured underneath) with all collections, including the new ‘Fine Watch Making’ pieces. This is a very nice and quiet place in the Boutique, where one can sit down and chat endlessly with the sales people about the latest developments in horology, since they are very well informed about the Fine Watch Making collection.
Exclusive to the ‘Prince Building Flagship Boutique’ are the various jade and coral pieces, and in fact, the most complete collection of Cartier goods in Asia, can be found here. The boutique is quite a bit more than just a place for sophisticated shoppers to purchase their new timepiece or necklace, it has become the place where history and legacy of Cartier will continue to grow.
Since the opening of the ‘Prince’s building Boutique’ in 1970, Cartier has opened nine boutiques in Hong Kong. About two years ago, the ‘1881 Heritage Boutique’ on Canton Road opened it’s doors. A complete different and more open concept, that I favour a lot.
‘Cartier Prince’s Building’ is definitely the mother of all Asian Boutiques,
if I may call it like that, but the 1881 Heritage has it’s own atmosphere and specialties. When visiting Hong Kong, these two stores are a must see and in fact, they are only three MTR stops away from each other.
Or take the ferry, that can be found at 5 min walk from the ‘1881 Heritage Boutique’ and on the other side of Victoria Harbour, walk along, Chater Road to the ‘Prince’s Building’ and see for yourself which one you favour most.