TAG Heuer Opens First Flagship in North America

Exterior of new TAG Heuer flagship at the Crystals

Exterior of new TAG Heuer flagship at the Crystals

Las Vegas—TAG Heuer recently opened its first North American flagship store here, a location that not only will house the watch brand’s entire timepiece collection but also accessories including leathergoods, sunglasses, belts and mobile phones.

The 800-square-foot store is situated in the Crystals, a high-end shopping destination at CityCenter, will also serve as a launch pad for new collections, such as the new Link series as well as special editions.

Half of Sales Could Be to Women

“We consider our TAG Heuer brand stores to be a complement to our wholesale retail doors,” said Jean-Christophe Babin, worldwide ceo. “We want the flagship to serve as a showcase to the entire scope of what TAG Heuer is all about. We are careful to open only in places where we can basically serve as a larger than life advertisement about TAG. And Las Vegas, a destination for American as well as international consumers is the perfect location.”

Designed by renowned architect Eric Carlson, who has collaborated on the brand’s flagships in Paris and London, the store is designed to be open and inviting with eye-level showcases of dark zebra wood, brushed aluminum, glass and cream leather.

Housed in the store will be about 240 SKUs of timepieces including its women’s collection, including the brand’s top-selling Formula 1 ceramic and steel watches and Carrera styles as well as the new Carrera Mikrograph 1/100thsecond chronograph, a world’s first. Non-timepiece merchandise includes leather racing jackets, belts, sunglasses, cufflinks, leathergoods and an assortment of the brand’s mobile phones, Meridist. Babin estimated that about 60% of unit sales will be in timepieces with 40% in accessories.

Interior view TAG Heuer flagship

Interior view TAG Heuer flagship

Although TAG is known for its motor-racing heritage, sales to women are expected to account for about 40%, said Alyssa Mishcon, vice president of strategic planning and business development at TAG. “The fact that the Crystals attract affluent families who tend to shop together is going to bring more women into the store where they can see all the women’s watches.”

While TAG has some 100 freestanding boutiques mostly in Asia and Europe, Babin said additional stores could be opened in North America “but only in careful consideration. We sometime partner with our retail accounts on some flagships, which is a possibility. From our experience elsewhere, in the cities where we open flagships, we see an overall rise in our sales even at nearby multi-brand retailers.”

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Jeff Prine, Editor at Large, Accessories Magazine
Jeff returns as a regular contributor to Accessories magazine. Initially Jeff worked as senior editor at Accessories more than 20 years ago and his love of the industry has followed him until present. Since his tenure here, Jeff has continued to report jewelry, watch and other luxury goods trends as executive editor at Modern Jeweler magazine, fashion director at Lustre, and as contributor on products and trends for consumer and trade publications and websites. In addition to his editorial experience, Jeff also served as an adjunct instructor for accessories merchandising at Fashion Institute of Technology. jeffp@busjour.com