Go Inside Chanel’s First Watches and Jewelry Boutique in the U.S.
Designed by Peter Marino, the Fifth Avenue boutique captures the essence of the brand’s sophisticated allure
Just as jewels sparkle due to their many facets, so does the newly opened Chanel watches and fine jewelry boutique. Located on a sumptuous stretch of New York’s Fifth Avenue, the destination’s address is no accident—appropriately aligning itself with Gabrielle “Coco” Chanel’s lucky number five.
For the design its first standalone watch and fine jewelry boutique in the U.S., the maison collaborated with architect Peter Marino, who transforms a palette primarily of black and gold into layer upon layer of visual poetry by exercising a highly tactile approach. The result is a draw-dropping two-story jewel box that’s as dazzling as it is inviting.
Weaving together some of her signature symbols and design cues from her own apartment at 31 Rue Cambon as well as nods to Chanel’s Place Vendôme watch and fine jewelry boutique, also crafted by Marino, the design is a stunning tribute to the timeless elegance and style of Chanel herself.
The façade tucked into the Crown Building, a Beaux Arts landmark dating to 1921, sets the tone as it creates a glowing beacon across the prime thorough with its honed-and-grooved black granite and bronze screens. The same palette of black and gold continues once inside—from the sublime decor to the masterful collection of art.
An entryway of black-and-gold paneling and Japanese lotus blossom flowers form the Edo Period first greets visitors they continue into the double-height main gallery. There, a pair of “Dream Catcher” chandeliers by Goossens, one of the maison d’arts owned by Chanel, speaks to the level of artistry found in every element of both the boutique as well as the watches and fine jewelry of the brand. Below, an array of vitrines dance around a captivating sculpture by André Dubrueil, which mixes metals and crystal in a totem-like shape.
Also adding a glittering allure to the room is a balustrade of 24-karat gold framed plates of panels of rock crystal, also by Goossens. They bring the eye up to the the mezzanine level, which houses a pair of fine jewelry salons, with one reserved for private client appointments. Here, a commissioned portrait of Gabrielle Chanel by Vik Muniz made with diamond dust entitled Chanel, Pictures of Diamonds.
A treasure trove of artworks awaits curious shoppers, who will discover a gold leaf on linen canvas wall collage by American Iranian painter Y.Z. Kami and a quietly riveting black wall work by Louise Nevelson.
Of course, the true stars are the jewelry pieces themselves, with everything from the refined elegance of the fine jewelry Coco Crush’s quilted gold pieces and the organic beauty of the Camélia collection on offer. Plus, the boutique showcases offerings from Chanel’s high jewelry collection to celebrate the opening of the Fifth Avenue boutique. Nodding to the importance of the number five, the piece dubbed “Eternal No5” and imagined by Patrice Leguéreau, director of the fine jewelry creation studio. The masterpiece is a transformable white gold and diamond necklace and pair of earrings featuring the number. The pieces’ emerald-cut diamonds can be detached and worn as rings. Certainly, just one of the many elements of this transcendent destination that will have visitors remembering the importance of the number five.