The Age of Enlightenment in Europe was the era of great philosophers and unprecedented technological innovations, for which Pierre Jaquet-Droz represents one of the leading figures. It is also the era in which the Western world discovered China. The founder of the brand known by its twin stars, as famous for its watches as for its objets d'art and its spectacular humanoid automata, established its position as a nexus between these two worlds. It was the first Western watchmaker to penetrate beyond the walls of the Forbidden City, and went so far as to win the favor of the Emperor Qianlong (1711-1799) himself with its timepieces, snuffboxes and extraordinary singing birds. Some of these pieces are still preciously conserved today within the walls of the former Imperial Palace, as a testimony to the long-standing ties between the Middle Kingdom and Jaquet Droz over the centuries since 1779.
In 2013, Jaquet Droz unveiled its first boutique in continental China. Marc A. Hayek, President of Jaquet Droz and a director of the Swatch Group, inaugurated the new boutique in the XinTianDi quarter in the heart of Shanghai. The premises iterated all the codes of the brand: sleek architectural design, authentic luxury, unparalleled experience of a common history going back well over two centuries.
Today, Jaquet Droz is taking another step forward with the reinvention of this exceptional site. Perfectly true to its history, the brand has maintained all its codes of exclusivity, while doubling the floor space of this horological showcase located in the most creative and most authentic quarters of the Chinese metropolis.
Now, the Jaquet Droz boutique is able to present the brand's most beautiful pieces under the best conditions: the Bird Repeater Day and Night, a veritable contemporary masterpiece, is displayed alongside the timepieces designed by the artisans of the Jaquet Droz Ateliers d’Art to celebrate the Year of the Goat. The new private showrooms offer not only the opportunity to discover these pieces in an intimate setting, but also to appreciate the new Jaquet Droz creations… And to continue to strengthen the centuries-old ties that have always cherished a fascination with the past, delight in the present and a common enthusiasm for the future.
Over centuries it became a legend, serving imperial whims before returning to its place of birth – almost by accident. The “Singing Bird Clock” by Jaquet Droz is a one-of-a-kind story in the history of watchmaking.
In a new architectural interpretation of its icon, the Grande Seconde Skelet-One lets light into the heart of its mechanics.
Jaquet Droz is writing a new chapter in its special relationship with China. The grand opening of the Xi’an boutique on July 6th thus solidifies a history that the Jaquet-Droz family first began to write 280 years ago.
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