When Seiko Watch Corporation announced earlier this year that it was spinning off its Grand Seiko collection into its own independent brand, the Japanese watchmaker was making a major commitment to its flagship luxury line, which had launched globally only seven years prior. That commitment became even more clear last week, as the very first dedicated Grand Seiko boutique in the world opened its doors right here in the U.S.A. — specifically, in the world-famous high-end shopping hub of Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills.
The boutique features a blue-and-silver color scheme reflecting the hallmark colors of Grand Seiko watches — which, beginning with the new models introduced at Baselworld 2017, all now feature a Grand Seiko (rather than Seiko) logo at 12 o’clock on their dials to proclaim the brand’s individuality. For the first time in the Americas, the entire international collection from Grand Seiko will be available, with watches equipped with the proprietary 9 Series of mechanical, quartz, and Spring Drive movements, all handmade in two studios in Japan and used exclusively by Grand Seiko.
The grand opening ceremony on November 15 featured a ribbon-cutting performed by President and COO of Seiko Watch Corporation Shuji Takahashi, the host of the evening’s festivities, along with special VIP guests Akira Chiba, Consul General of Japan in Los Angeles, and Lili Bosse, Mayor of Beverly Hills. This was followed by a cocktail reception that featured canapés and cocktails designed by Nobu Matsuhisha, renowned sushi chef, founder of Nobu restaurants, and Grand Seiko brand ambassador. Takahashi, Chiba, and Bosse got the evening off to its official start with the ceremonial opening of the celebratory cask of sake and subsequent toast.