Shopping for a luxury watch in Switzerland

Shopping for a luxury watch in Switzerland

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mhdluqman
mhdluqman
19 posts
new member
Apr 9, 2018 - 7:51 AM

Hello All,

I will be in Switzerlan for 3 days this April. And my father asked me to get or just review the prices of luxury watches in Switzerland. Where should I go besides Zurich and Geneva?

I recently discovered that there is Bahnhofstrasse in Zermatt. Can I just do it there instead? I will go to Klein Matterhorn, so it will not be a waste of time.

Thank you for your help.

Peterli
Peterli
455 posts
top member
Apr 9, 2018 - 8:32 AM in reply to mhdluqman

Only three days ? Are you going to be in both Geneva and Zurich? Other places (other than Zermatt) as well ? Three days doesn't give you much time to go watch hunting and I assume you have other reasons to be in the country. You might want to do some searching on the internet and see if there are any duty-free stores where you could get a better deal. I'm sorry I can't give you any more help. I had a Victorinox watch years ago and never replaced it when I lost it. Now I just get my time off my mobile device or whatever camera I happen to have at the time.

mhdluqman
mhdluqman
19 posts
new member
Apr 9, 2018 - 8:42 AM in reply to Peterli

haha yes, only 3 days. This is my first time to Europe and I want to visit other countries as well.

It will not be a true watch hunting, because my father already sent me pictures of the watches he likes (only 3-5 kinds) so I think I can do it in 2 hours. From what I read, the prices in Switzerland is the same everywhere in Switzerland. I mean, different stores will have the same price for the same exact watch. So I guess if I can do it in Zermatt, I don't need to go to Zurich before I need to go to the Zurich Flughafen.

pvonk
pvonk
53 posts
active member
Apr 9, 2018 - 3:08 PM in reply to mhdluqman

When in Lucerne last year, I went into a "luxury" watch shop out of curiosity. You couldn't get anything for under $10,000! What's your definition of "luxury"?

AlanPrice
AlanPrice
193 posts
active member
Apr 9, 2018 - 7:10 PM

Hi,

If your dad has already narrowed down his choices to a handful, then Zermatt will probably be just fine, unless it is an obscure, ultra expensive watch, in which case you may have to go to a bigger town that has more to offer.

One good thing about watch shopping in switzerland is they display the prices in the show window, so you know exactly what you are looking at, but don't be discouraged by the cost, only the most expensive models will be on display. Inside will be the full range so it pays to go in and have a chat with the sales people.

Out of interest, which watches is your father interested in? "Common" brands such as Rolex, Omega, A Lange und Sohn, IWC and Jaeger le Coultre you can get just about anywhere, although some low volume models may not be on display and they will have to be ordered from the factory.

Alan

mhdluqman
mhdluqman
19 posts
new member
Apr 9, 2018 - 9:04 PM in reply to pvonk

Pvonk:

Well my definition is mostly based on brands. I mean Omega and Hublot are already considered “luxuxruy” for me. :)

Alam Price:

My dad already sent me pictures of Omega, Hublot and Bell&Ross. Do you know if all of them are available in Zermatt Shopping Street? I planned to go to the airport shops but I was concerned that the selection will not be as complete as the ones in the Zurich Shopping street. Since I am staying in Interlaken,and my flight is 12.30pm from Zurich, I can’t exatcly do it in my last day. Do you get what I mean? :D

Peterli
Peterli
455 posts
top member
Apr 9, 2018 - 11:20 PM in reply to mhdluqman

My must confess i had never heard of the watchmaker Bell & Ross. So I looked them up and found that they are up above Neuchâtel in La Chaux-de-Fonds. Perhaps your dad would like the one shown in this attachment. I might add that I don't think it would be available in Zermatt, but who knows ?

Actually, I am more partial to the Jaeger-LeCoultre line of watches. Check out the attached about the Master Minute Repeater. However I think I'll just continue to check my mobile device when I want to know the time.

By the way, have you and your father ever heard of Jomashop over in the USA ? It might be worthwhile to do a few price comparisons: www.jomashop.com/

Last modified on Apr 9, 2018 - 11:37 PM by Peterli
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mhdluqman
mhdluqman
19 posts
new member
Apr 10, 2018 - 12:05 AM in reply to Peterli

Hahaha yes, I never heard of it either until my dad mentioned it. He’s one of those guys who believe that men should wear good quality watches. I also use my mobile to tell me the time.

And honestly, I am not aware of luxury brand watches other than Omega (because of James Bond) and good old Rolex.

Thank you for the suggestion, I will check the jomashop link you provided.

BarSal
BarSal
89 posts
active member
Apr 10, 2018 - 1:28 AM

For me the luxury watch I associate with Switzerland is Longines. It is the oldest continuous trademark in the world. Their head office is in Saint-Imier (1.5 hours by train outside of Bern).

They are stocked in many Swiss cities. (You can buy them all over the world but something special about buying it in Switzerland).

Places you can buy them are listed on their website. There are five on Bahnhofstrasse in Zurich (almost every city has a Bahnhofstrasse) there is even one at the Zurich airport.

Those shops designated as customer service centres may have a better buy price than the boutique or tourist shops.

Avoid tourist areas. Go to a business district and shop where the locals shop.

Get on the internet and do your homework.

Good luck!

mhdluqman
mhdluqman
19 posts
new member
Apr 10, 2018 - 2:54 AM in reply to BarSal

Thank you for the information BarSal, I will surely mention it to my dad.

I want to ask : Bahnofstrasse is the shopping street/district right? is that what you mean by "where the locals shop"? Because I thought Bahnofstrasse is geared towards tourists and consists of many boutiques.

I will google more information about this.

Thank you.

Peterli
Peterli
455 posts
top member
Apr 10, 2018 - 3:18 AM

Bahnhofstrasse is broken into two words. Bahnhof is train station and strasse is street. So the Bahnhofstrasse in any city is usually the street leading to and from the train station. There is no requirement for shops and boutiques on the Bahnhofstrasse in any city or town, but this may occur. It most certainly does in Zurich, for example.

In Neuchâtel, which is in the French speaking part of Switzerland, the name used is Avenue de la gare and it is definitely not lined with boutiques and the like. It is quite busy and buses are constantly running up and down to connect the train station (la gare) with the downtown area closer to the lake where there are many stores. If you go onto Google Maps and type in "Avenue de la Gare" + the name of any city in the French part of Switzerland (Lausanne, for example) I'm pretty sure you'll see a street running to or beside the train station.

Last modified on Apr 10, 2018 - 3:33 AM by Peterli
BarSal
BarSal
89 posts
active member
Apr 10, 2018 - 4:16 AM in reply to mhdluqman

The ‘train station street’ is always a busy street. Like airports they are usually geared to tourists.

I would think a business district where locals work and shop might be a better area.

Doing your homework, knowing what you are looking for and about how much it will cost will make it more likely to get what you want at a good price.

Peterli
Peterli
455 posts
top member
Apr 10, 2018 - 6:07 AM in reply to BarSal

Hello BarSal,

<< For me the luxury watch I associate with Switzerland is Longines. It is the oldest continuous trademark in the world. >> This is just playing with words. Longines was founded in 1832 and now it only assembles watches using components that it buys from suppliers. By contrast, Vacheron Constantin was founded in 1755 and so has a much longer history. Even Napoléon Bonaparte wore a Vacheron Constantin. Read all about that and more here: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ Vacheron_Constantin Here is a bit of what you will read on Wikipedia: In 2015, during the manufacturer's 260th anniversary, Vacheron Constantin revealed the world's most complicated mechanical watch, named Reference 57260. It took three watchmakers eight years to build the 57-complication watch at the request of a client. Vacheron Constantin would not disclose the exact price of this watch but did confirm that it was between 8 million and 20 million US dollars.

I attach an image of the Reference 57260, and people can read more about its "complications" at: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ Reference_57260

Last modified on Apr 10, 2018 - 6:10 AM by Peterli
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Peterli
Peterli
455 posts
top member
Apr 10, 2018 - 6:56 AM in reply to BarSal

Hello again,

<< The ‘train station street’ is always a busy street. Like airports they are usually geared to tourists. >> A Bahnhofstrasse or an Avenue de la gare in Romandie or a Viale Stazione in the Ticino will be certainly be busy because of people going to and from the trains. But they are certainly not "usually geared to tourists". I even question that airports are "geared to tourists" Rather, they are geared to travelers. There is a huge difference between travelers and tourists. Yes, an airport at a tourist destination (say on a Caribbean island) is likely, to use your word, to be "geared" to tourists, but most of the users in most of the airports, in fact the overwhelming majority of them, are not tourists, and they just want to get from A to B. They are moving for business (occupational) or family reasons.

As for the "train station streets" in Switzerland, with a few notable exceptions, they are not "geared" for tourists. They are usually there to facilitate movements to and from the train stations for commuters and students and also vehicles carrying goods for train transit. When you are driving a car and you see the name Bahnhofstrasse, you know you are on the right track to get to the train station. Zurich's Bahnhofstrasse would be one of the exceptions, as it is a pedestrian zone, and is literally lined with all manner of stores and banks all the way from the Bahnhof right down to the lake. The Bahnhofstrasse in Zermatt is another exception, and of course Zermatt is car-free.

Last modified on Apr 10, 2018 - 6:58 AM by Peterli
BarSal
BarSal
89 posts
active member
Apr 10, 2018 - 7:05 AM

That's good information Peterli - at between 12,900 and 110,500 Euros, you might be able to suggest a good place for mhdlugman to get one for his father?

Peterli
Peterli
455 posts
top member
Apr 10, 2018 - 7:22 AM in reply to BarSal

I don't know what his budget is. I guess his father will tell him what he wants him to get. Here (attached) is another one he might like if he has (very) deep pockets. It too, (like the Vacheron Constantin) is made in Geneva.

Last modified on Apr 10, 2018 - 7:29 AM by Peterli
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mhdluqman
mhdluqman
19 posts
new member
Apr 10, 2018 - 9:08 AM

Thank you so mich for your information. I will try to filter it down. And regarding the “depth of my pocket”, it’s not very deep :)) so I guess we’ll see how much my dad will set his ceiling price haha.

Again, thank you for the clarification about Bahnofstrasse. I learned both German and French in hogh school but my French is always better. When you say it as Avenue de la gare, I understand right away what it means.

cam223
cam223
66 posts
active member
Apr 10, 2018 - 1:10 PM

I've shopped for watches in Switzerland. The most important piece of information for me was that the same brand and particular watch will be the same price no matter where you buy it in Switzerland. The Bucherer watch I bought in Zermatt was the same price in Geneva, etc. Unlike the USA, where stores may have sales on certain brands and consequently the price may be lower in one store versus another, that doesn't happen in Switzerland. I didn't get to shop for watches this past November in Zermatt since quite a few stores were closed but the watches that I saw in some of the store windows were the same price in each store.

Peterli
Peterli
455 posts
top member
Apr 10, 2018 - 1:24 PM in reply to cam223

That is useful information for any visitor to Switzerland. It helps to explain the "best price guarantee" of the tax-free and duty-free shops at Zurich airport. I read about this guarantee at the following: www.myswitzerland.com/ en-ca/zurich-airport-duty-free-paradise.html

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