aced with chains, supermarkets and mono- brand boutiques, a good number of traditional family boutiques have closed. And this concentration of the market is putting the brands themselves in danger, because they’re dependent on a smaller number of retailers.
Our boutique dates back 142 years. We recently
renovated it and we could have designed
something very modern, modelled
on an Apple Store or an airport shop! But
you find that kind of thing everywhere. We
preferred taking our inspiration from the original boutique
from a century and a half ago.
All our inspiration comes from the passage of time. As retailers, we ourselves have to play on time. The way you design your space is crucial: we’re in the centre of Berlin, but when you walk through the door, you can slow your pace down. We have space here, a garden… It conveys an impression of tranquillity and isolation while everything around you is in movement. It’s a kind of stability and permanence, like the mechanical watch, an instrument that hasn’t really changed for centuries, apart from its quality and accuracy. Personally, I wear a model with a piece of meteorite in it, as a reminder of how we’re rooted in time. Time that goes back billions of years! We’ve also set up a museum dedicated to objects that have told the time since Antiquity.
- © Schmuck Magazin
I know I won’t be attracting Berlin’s hipsters. But you have to be clear about what you want. My main target is aged between 40 and 60. Today, you no longer need to wear a watch. But remember when quartz arrived, mechanical watches seemed obsolete. We’re in the luxury segment, so we address an exclusive customer base that appreciates art and history and has ready cash. I see our role like that of bespoke consultants. Because we address maybe 3% of the population.
Crisis? Give me a break. 2016 was better than the previous year, which itself was better than the preceding year. Of course, the figures aren’t in the stratospheric region, because the competition feeds on promotional price campaigns. What we really need to do today is to tweak every parameter: everything should be geared to promoting a common watchmaking culture. If all you’re seeking is a return on investment, you have no idea of what watchmaking is all about. What’s more, the price issue is much more crucial on the internet than when you go to a boutique.
What percentage of our target customer base will prefer to have a watch delivered to their door; how many will opt rather to go to the boutique? What will their choice be, between our physical garden and the digital jungle? I’m not going to go running after them. It’s like the vintage segment: if it attracts people towards watches in the first place, so much the better.”
Name: Juwelier Lorenz
Launch date: 1875
Category: Haut et moyen de gamme
Cartier, Jaeger-LeCoultre, Omega, Rolex, Baume & Mercier, Breitling, Ebel, Frédérique Constant, Longines, Maurice Lacroix, Oris, Parmigiani Fleurier, Rado, TAG Heuer, Tudor, Askania, Junghans, MeisterSinger, Mühle-Glashütte, Nomos, Tutima, Union Glashütte, Casio, Grand Seiko, Seiko, Bomberg, Certina, Michel Herbelin, Raymond Weil, Tissot, Erwin Sattler