While gambling – or gaming in the industry’s parlance – is the mother’s milk of Las Vegas, the city’s retail offerings rival most of the world’s A-list cities. Think of a brand and it more than likely has a storefront in Vegas. And not only that, the city’s retail footprints are often large and glitzy. Like everything else in Las Vegas, the whole point of having a presence there is to be noticed and hopefully bought.
I’m not a shopper in the sense that I shop to find emotional satisfaction, rather I am endlessly fascinated by the variety of goods out there in the world. I’m like a sociological shopper; learning about craftsmen and companies, brands and trends, quality and design by exploring the final products that hit the market. A place like Las Vegas is remarkable because it draws the finest brands from around the world to one place.
In this city you will see cheek by jowl companies that you did not even know had a store and familiar mass market luxury names. Some firms use their Vegas presence to create a new version of themselves, capitalizing on the town’s penchant for bigger and glitzier. I found the ultimate expression of this philosophy in the Forum Shops at Caesars.
The Tourneau Time Dome is the venerable New York company’s Las Vegas Outlet. It’s Tourneau’s largest store; 35 custom-built brand shops-within-a-shop are spread across two-stories. From Swiss Army to Rolex to Breguet, more than 8,000 timepieces from 100 watchmakers are on display. Unsurprisingly, according to the Guinness Book of World Records, the 17,500-square-foot space is the world’s largest watch store.
For watch lovers, it’s a breathtaking experience. In the end though, it’s a store in Vegas which has its pluses and minuses. I initially found the sales staff to be rather dismissive – particularly the Rolex guys. However, as I worked my way into the store and investigated less pedestrian brands – Panerai, Duby & Schaldenbrand, Blancpain, IWC – I met Kate Um, one of the senior sales consultants. She was a pleasure to chat with and was nonplussed that I might not buy something that very minute, instead walking me through the boutiques and discussing the merits of some less obvious brands.
If you happen to be in Vegas for a day or so, take a little time to visit the Time Dome. If you are in the market for a new watch you’ll certainly see more options than you thought existed. If you just want to look around and see what’s out there, you will not be disappointed.