Swiss watchmaker TAG Heuer has re-opened its flagship boutique in The Dubai Mall, after a comprehensive overhaul which lasted for several weeks. The brand celebrated the re-opening with a two day event, which took place on October 30 and 31.
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TAG says its renovated boutique provides an atmosphere that is now more closely aligned with its longstanding traits of passion, creativity and reliability.The boutique has been lavished with marble, leather and ebony stained oak, in addition to blasted metal and black glass. Red tire prints are also visible across the store’s windows, while racing wheels also feature prominently in the store’s facade.
Within the boutique there are plenty of watches on display, including a wall focused purely on haute horology pieces. The revamped boutique also features a VIP area designed to resemble a library, which features prominent items from TAG’s DNA and history, as well as very special pieces from TAG’s very own museum in Switzerland.
TAG Heuer says the new design calls to focus the company’s new strategy and mindset of #DontCrackUnderPressure – the latter is a global campaign with a heavy focus on social media and TAG’s roots, namely pushing boundaries with activities such as motorsports.
Let the games begin…
To mark the official re-opening of its boutique, TAG Heuer put together a gaming arena in the Gold Souk Atrium adjacent to the boutique; clients, visitors and fans were encouraged to participate in games and contests.
The ‘Don’t Crack under Pressure’ arena included a ‘Batak’ exercise, which is used by professional race car drivers to improve their hi-speed reaction. The fastest Batak challenger gets to meet Formula 1 champion Jenson Button and will also be presented a TAG Heuer timepiece during the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. The second and third place winners will also receive timepieces. (Ed: Very generous!)
Additional games and challenges in the TAG Heuer Gaming Arena included a sky electric challenge and a ‘selfiebackwall’, which allowed fans to interact with the brand on social media using the hashtags #tagheuer #tagheuerme #dontcrackunderpressure.
The company says its re-opened UAE flagship boutique in The Dubai Mall is one of three prestigious flagship boutiques in the world along with NYC 5th Avenue and Les Champs Elysees in Paris.
We were invited to the official opening and found the boutique’s new design and layout refreshing. Within the boutique there’s plenty to see and it’s all very inviting thanks to the light and airy interior. For the most part there’s plenty of space with the exception of one potential pinch-point to the left of the haute horology wall (assuming you’re standing in the main entrance looking directly at the haute horology wall).
There’s one seating area in the main area of the boutique and, as mentioned earlier, a VIP area tucked away into the back of the boutique. This is a nice place to be to soak in the boutique’s ambience, a timepiece or get to see some very cool brand paraphernalia.
We were particularly pleased to note that while the company still employs brand ambassadors on a global level, pictures of them were absent. The only exception to this is a vintage photograph of Steve McQueen that’s visible in one of the window sills – we highly approve! This is perhaps in line with the brand’s new global direction to focus on its roots.
Inside the boutique there are hundreds of watches on offer; everything from Carreras to Links to Aquaracers, to Monacos and rare haute horology pieces. During the visit, we were fortunate to find three particularly special haute horology pieces; the Carrera Mikropendulum, Carrera Mikrotourbillons (yes, plural), and the Monaco V4 (see image gallery below).
More intriguing still was a Monaco sitting in the VIP area that’s from TAG’s own museum (pictured below). Yes, it’s none other than an original Steve McQueen Monaco from 1969. If you want to have a look, head over immediately as we’ve been told the watch will stay in Dubai for only a limited amount of time.
On the whole we reckon TAG’s new boutique is a great destination for existing customers or for those that simply want to get to know the brand.