When it comes to watches and jewellery, only the best will do. We seek out the brands to know and the pieces to buy when in Tokyo, from beautiful yellow diamonds at Tiffany & Co to Japanese watch specialist Seiko
Japan is a haven for luxury shopping. Its largest cities are home to flagship boutiques of leading high-end brands from across the world, as well as the nation’s own luxury labels. When it comes to fine jewellery and watches, you could hardly be better placed. Japan’s stunning boutiques offer the latest pieces and signature collections from all the most covetable brands, in boutiques that offer world-class service and an experience that goes far beyond simple retail.
Japan's stunning boutiques offer the latest pieces and signature collections from all the most covetable brands, in boutiques that offer world-class service and an experience that goes far beyond simple retail
Few brands will ever lay claim to as iconic a status as Tiffany & Co. Founded in New York in 1837, the house is internationally renowned as a specialist in jewellery and watches of the highest calibre. Tiffany has 180 years of expertise in the field of diamonds, and one of its unique offerings is its extensive range of yellow diamond jewellery. Tiffany selects only the most beautiful yellow stones, their intense lustre calling to mind the intensity of sunlight. Many of the brand’s most luxurious pieces feature these bright stones. Set in platinum and white gold and surrounded by white diamonds, the yellow gems seem to glow from within.
At the extensive flagship in Tokyo’s luxurious Ginza district, visitors will also find a range of fine Tiffany timepieces. The Tiffany Cocktail collection is one of the brand’s signature ranges, and the latest additions are as elegant and feminine as ever. Perfected by master craftsmen in Switzerland, the watches combine Swiss horological expertise with Tiffany’s timeless glamour. Minimal in design but finished with sparkling diamonds, these are beautiful enough for a special occasion yet timeless enough to wear every day. Whatever catches your eye at Tiffany, your purchase will be beautifully wrapped in the brand’s signature blue box, which has become an icon in itself.
Swiss watchmaker Omega, founded in 1903, is among the most respected in the world. Its timepieces have been worn by famous names from American presidents to British royalty, as well as every on-screen James Bond since 1995. It is also famous as the brand of astronauts: its Speedmaster watch has been a part of all six lunar missions.
At the Ginza flagship, visitors should look out for the Speedmaster Moonphase Chronograph Master Chronometer, a timepiece in inky midnight blue which features tiny photo-realistic moons that accurately track the lunar cycle. The stainless steel Speedmaster Racing Master Chronometer, inspired by the model’s motor racing heritage, has a stylish matt-black dial and distinctive orange details. Ladies should seek out the Seamaster Aqua Terra Master Chronometer, whose combination of stainless steel and Omega’s trademarked rose-coloured Sedna gold is finished with sparkling diamonds.
At Swiss label Chopard, every line is based on the passions of members of its eponymous founding family, including vintage racing cars, outstanding gemstones, expert watchmaking or striking jewellery. The brand is known worldwide as a leader in high jewellery, providing sparkling pieces for the most exclusive red carpet events. But it began as a watchmaker, and luxury timepieces remain just as important to Chopard as beautiful jewellery.
Watch lovers should look out for the Classic collection, which bridges the gap between the pocket watches created by founder Louis-Ulysse Chopard and the ultra-modern world of horology today. When it comes to jewellery, highlights of this season include the Happy Hearts collection, which celebrates love and luck through heart motifs and the signature Chopard spinning diamonds, and the Ice Cube Pure line, a sleek and minimal range crafted from precious metals and white diamonds.
Finally, while in Japan be sure to check out leading Japanese watchmaker Seiko. Founded in 1881, Seiko has always been at the forefront of technology – the brand pioneered the world’s first quartz watch in 1969. Seiko’s quest is for perfection, and to ensure the exemplary quality of all of its watches, every component of each model is designed and made by Seiko, from springs to straps. ‘With this completely in-house approach to manufacturing, we can guarantee the very highest levels of quality,’ explains PR manager Noboru Miyadera.
This season, Miyadera points watch conoisseurs towards the Grand Seiko in 18-carat gold, a reissue of the first model from this highly successful collection. ‘It is a very faithful recreation of the original Grand Seiko from 1960, recreated with the latest watchmaking technology,’ he explains. An iconic model from an iconic Japanese brand makes for a wonderful souvenir of your time in this amazing country.