WITH AN IMMERSIVE INSTALLATION CELEBRATING THE ROYAL OAK’S JUBILEE
Swiss Haute Horlogerie manufacturer Audemars Piguet celebrated the relocation of its Doha boutique to the Place Vendôme Mall on 14 September. For the occasion, the brand organised an event in partnership with local retailer Ali Bin Ali, inviting guests on an immersive journey through the Royal Oak’s multifaceted world, giving an experiential overview of its 50 years of design and technical innovation. This pop-up installation was held in line with a series of events, which have taken the shape of public immersive sensory experiences, pop-up exhibitions and exclusive dinners, organised by the brand since April 2022 in key cities around the world to celebrate the iconic timepiece’s 50th anniversary.
AN IMMERSIVE JOURNEY THROUGH TIME
Echoing the youthful spirit of the Manufacture, the pop-up installation at Place Vendôme Mall invited guests to dive deep into the Royal Oak’s cultural universe and follow the journey of this iconic timepiece from its first inspirations to its evolving conversation with the larger cultural world. For the occasion, heritage pieces from the iconic collection were presented alongside a selection of 2022 Royal Oak novelties. To complete the experience, a watchmaking expert from Le Brassus introduced visitors to the Manufacture’s uncompromising craftsmanship blending age-old skills with avant-garde designs. Celebrations continued in the newly open boutique, where guests discovered the brand’s new book Royal Oak: From Iconoclast to Icon, published by luxury publishing house Assouline and written by award-winning cultural journalist Bill Prince.
“We are delighted to celebrate the Royal Oak’s 50th anniversary with our community and watch lovers worldwide. This icon is 50 years young today! It is this incredible youthful spirit that has driven its evolution since the beginning, keeping it ahead of its time.”
Chief Executive Officer, Audemars Piguet
A TRIBUTE TO THE ROYAL OAK’S OFFICIAL LAUNCH
The Royal Oak designed by Gérald Genta for Audemars Piguet was revealed on April 15, 1972, at the Basel Fair. This avant-garde timepiece created a stir with its large body of hand-finished stainless steel, its octagonal bezel secured with visible hexagonal screws, its highly stylised integrated steel bracelet and its extra-thin selfwinding mechanism. Despite its controversial beginnings, this watch combining sportiness with ancestral expertise ushered in the beginning of a new fine watchmaking era in tune with changing lifestyles. A true blend of ancestral craftsmanship and technological advances, the Royal Oak has been a canvas for design innovation ever since.
50 years on, over 500 Royal Oak models have been created, showcasing different sizes, materials, styles and movements, all contributing to turning this iconoclast into a cultural icon within and beyond watchmaking. Today, the 50th anniversary festivities bring watch enthusiasts together to pay tribute to this timepiece’s remarkable history and youthful spirit, which continues to inspire people across fields of creative practice.
“Born in Le Brassus, raised around the world.”