Hublot’s Tokyo watch boutique plays on glass and crystal
The flagship boutique in Ginza is Hublot’s largest retail space to date
Unexpected amalgamations of materials have long been key design codes of a Hublot watch, which utilise innovative components for functional results. Their so-called Magic Gold, for example – an 18k scratch-proof gold alloy – has surprised in the past when combined with rubber for a sportier timepiece. Ultra-tough ceramic and fully transparent synthetic sapphire look sleek and are more than strong enough to protect a watch’s exposed movement within.
Their boutiques around the world incorporate this same balance of design and functionality, with the opening of the sixth in Tokyo – it follows Paris, Geneva, New York, London and Hong Kong – also marking Hublot’s largest retail space.
The 56m high store on the city’s Chuo-dori Street encapsulates these juxtapositions in both the interior and exterior. The three floors within are dominated by a staircase of laser-cut mirrored stainless steel; interior accents of ebony, leather and crystal make for a warmly textured welcome. Despite the large space, Hublot cultivates a feeling of intimacy: floors in black lava stone and marble are a contemporary foil for graphite-coloured leather and alcantara furnishings. ‘We worked with various high-tech materials and colours, as well as playing with mirrors inside the boutique,’ says Hublot CEO Ricardo Guadalupe. ‘This mix of materials, shapes and colours allowed us to break up the different perspectives, on the ground and in the height.’
It is a design tick also embraced in the exterior of the building. Guadalupe adds: ‘We used glass panels, inside of which we inserted crystals so that we can play with the day and the night light. During the day the facade is sparkling, and during the night light is reflected.’ §