Thanks to the game of Monopoly, many players know that landing on somebody's property in Mayfair can be an expensive mistake. Renowned for its swanky boutiques, private clubs, embassies, five-star hotels, antiques shops and art galleries, Mayfair is fast establishing itself as the new Mecca for high-end watch and jewellery brands.
Richard Mille watches is the new kid on the block and has opened its first stand-alone boutique with a very upmarket address on Mount Street. With neighbours including Jessica McCormack, Solange Azagury-Partridge, Parmigiani, Stephen Webster and Bremont, Richard Mille has made a sound investment, confirming the brand's continuing growth.
Richard Mille's technology-packed watches have a very high degree of visibility, touted around the four corners of the globe by his stellar A-Team of brand ambassadors, which include tennis giant Rafa Nadal, martial arts hero Jackie Chan, actress Natalie Portman and Italian chef Carlo Cracco, the latest friend of the brand.
Far from the hustle and bustle, the new Mount Street boutique is an oasis of peace spread over 80sq m on two floors. A wide selection of watches and some very special, limited-edition pieces are available to browse and try on to celebrate the opening of Richard Mille's first London boutique.
Unusual for Richard Mille, whose identity is associated with his beefy, tonneau-shaped cases, the round red gold case of the Boutique Edition RM 033 is ultra thin, measuring just 6.30mm. Given the complexity of Richard Mille watches, this is a very lean machine indeed. Skeletonised on the dial and the caseback and with an Arabic numeral dial, the dress watch features a novel platinum micro rotor that ensures up to 42 hours of power reserve. The extra-flat skeletonised movement - a wafer-thin 2.60mm - is housed in a large 45.70mm case and is limited to 10 pieces only.
The RM 030 Polo de Saint Tropez watch was designed this year to mark the brand's role as official timekeeper of the Saint Tropez Polo Club. Released in May and limited to 50 pieces, it features a high-tech ceramic ATZ bezel and caseback, and the dial and case are decorated with navy blue and white details to reference the Polo Club Saint-Tropez club.
A third Richard Mille watch with the exclusivity factor is the sleek and stylish RM 029 All Grey Yellow Flash watch, with a big date window. A declination of Mille's famous RM 010, it is only available in the brand's boutiques.
It's an exciting time for watchmaking in London, with a flurry of recent boutique openings. But why Mayfair and why now? "Opening the boutique in London gives prominence to the brand's global presence and we are delighted to be part of this distinguished and vibrant area of London," says Peter Harrison, CEO of Richard Mille for Europe, the Middle East and Africa. "Our London boutique will offer an additional opportunity to share experiences with the brand in an environment of ultimate luxury, where product knowledge and customer service are at an optimum."
The new Richard Mille watch boutique is located on 90 Mount Street, Mayfair London.