Leading luxury e-retailer MR PORTER, the men’s fashion-focused partner of NET-A-PORTER, has partnered with global watchmaking platform Watches & Wonders to become its first multi-brand online retailer. The collaboration, which began in September 2020, will involve both digital and offline events, while bringing some of the watch industry’s most coveted luxury brands to MR PORTER’s extensive customer base — offering world-class shopping as well as top-notch editorial content. In all, 14 prestigious watchmaking maisons are taking part in this initiative — together for the first time.
Over the course of the campaign, MR PORTER customers will enjoy a calendar of activities, ranging from exclusive virtual events with EIP (Extremely Important Person) participation, to small-scale appointment-based sessions, to virtual one-to-one appointments and interactive Instagram Live conversations hosted by MR PORTER’s Editor in Chief, Sarah Bailey, and Senior Watch Editor, Chris Hall. In response to extensive customer research, MR PORTER has introduced a number of new website enhancements to the luxury watch shopping experience: an improved size guide and trend-driven, occasion-based and material filters are the first of several to follow.
Following on from the Watches & Wonders digital platform that occurred on NET-A-PORTER’s Tmall flagship store in April, this new initiative marks the beginning of a year-long program and establishes the luxury retailers as major global shopping destinations for some of the world’s leading watch and jewelry purveyors. This “tri-fold” approach to connecting consumers to brands in the fast-evolving luxury watch landscape is new and unique.
Meanwhile, MR PORTER will host a curated lineup of the newest and most coveted releases from all 13 of the participating maisons of Watches & Wonders, including Cartier, Hermès, IWC Schaffhausen, Jaeger-LeCoultre, Piaget and Vacheron Constantin, and will include two brands taking part for the first time, Ulysse Nardin and Bovet. Select brands will also offer their ladies’ timepieces on NET-A-PORTER. Among the most notable of the timepiece offerings on MR PORTER are the following:
• For those seeking a vintage-oriented yet suitably luxurious gents’ timepiece, Vacheron Constantin offers its FiftySix Automatic in Pink Gold with a sepia-toned dial. Its 40-mm Maltese-cross-inspired case comes on a brown leather strap and is outfitted with the manufacture Caliber 1326 with a 48-hour power reserve.
• Looking for a watch with a more avant-garde, high-octane design inspired by automobiles and engines? Check out the Roger Dubuis Excalibur Spider Huracàn, in a 45.5-mm GreyTech titanium case and powered by a high-tech, skeletonized caliber developed in collaboration with Lamborghini racing team engineers
• For the sophisticated global traveler, there’s the Bovet Récital 27 Limited Edition, whose array of complications includes indications for three times zones, 24 cities, and a sophisticated moon-phase. Its signature “writing slope” Dimier case is offered in titanium or red gold.
• Interested in a timepiece that gives a modern architectural twist to haute horlogerie? Consider the Ulysse Nardin Blast in Rose Gold, the headliner of a new collection of skeletonized tourbillon watches whose sculptural case is inspired by the lines of stealth aircraft.
• Those inclined toward a more traditional dress watch that they can make distinctly their own should check out the new Cartier Pasha, the 1980s style icon revamped for 2020 with new blue spinel crowns and hinged crown covers that the owner can personalize with a special engraving.
• For a more iconoclastic take on the mechanical watch, there’s Girard-Perregaux’s Free Bridge, the resolutely contemporary 21st-century evolution of the classical Three Gold Bridges, with a new in-house caliber on display at 12 o’clock on the open dial
“By teaming up with the world’s premier watch showcase, we want to provide an international platform for the most exceptional timepieces,” says Alison Loehnis, President, NET-A-PORTER & MR PORTER, “supporting an environment where their stories – and those of their iconic makers – can come alive and be accessed by watch lovers across the globe.” Matthieu Humair, CEO of the Fondation de la Haute Horlogerie, adds, “We are pleased to announce this unique partnership between Watches & Wonders and NET-A-PORTER and MR PORTER. It brings together selected partner brands of the Fondation de la Haute Horlogerie alongside exclusive content to create a new channel for Fine Watchmaking.”