The first Watches of Switzerland in America may be delayed until next year, according to US reports.
The luxury watch store, owned and managed by Aurum Holdings, was due to open ahead of Christmas this year in Hudson Yards, an 28 acres of land at the western edge of Manhattan, New York, that will include 1 million square feet of retail space, including 100 shops and 16 restaurants.
This week Related Companies, the master developer of Hudson Yards, has said it is pushing back the opening date for shops and restaurants from late 2018 to early 2019.
In response to questions from Dallas News, Related Companies spokesperson Joanna Rose said that delaying the opening of shops and restaurants would ensure that more residential and office developments would be complete and occupied, which would benefit the outlets.
“As we moved towards the opening dates for our largest commercial office tower, 30 Hudson Yards, the first residential building, 15 Hudson Yards, and 35 Hudson Yards which contains the first Equinox Hotel, we have refined the timing of the opening of The Shops & Restaurants to early 2019 to further align with those occupancies,” she said.
The new date will ensure a broad customer base and that the full collection of restaurants and retailers will all open at the same time, she added.
Aurum Group which is owned by the US-based Apollo Global Management private equity firm, has revealed plans for a 6000 square foot store in Hudson Yards. When CEO Brian Duffy first revealed plans to WatchPro last year, he said that the Manhattan store will have the accreditation to sell Rolex watches alongside an as-yet undisclosed list of other Swiss watch brands.
The delay in New York may be a blessing in disguise for Aurum Holdings, which has its hands full integrating Mayors Jewelers, a chain of 17 prestige jewellers in Florida and Georgia, that it acquired this summer for $104.6 million (£81 million).
Mayors gives Aurum Holdings a significant foothold in the US market, including the real estate and resources of a headquarters office in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
Mayors is a major player in Florida and Georgia where its portfolio of 17 stores is underpinned by 15 Rolex agencies.