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This month, one of New York’s most beloved watch boutiques celebrates its 40th anniversary. Wempe first opened its doors on Fifth Avenue on November 6, 1980, and while it has a single boutique in the U.S., it has a long history and many locations in Germany, where it was founded in 1878. Over the course of many decades, the Wempe family has established strong relationships with watch brands, allowing it to create unique timepieces to celebrate important anniversaries with the world’s most prestigious houses. Today, it releases the Alpine Eagle Wempe 5th Avenue Edition in collaboration with Chopard, which has a special relationship with Wempe.
“For our 40th anniversary, we went with a partner who's been with us all along, who created a watch, the Fifth Avenue, for the grand opening in 1980,” said Ruediger Albers, U.S. president of Wempe. “Being that we're both family-owned companies, it was just natural to build on that tradition and create a timepiece that commemorates our joint success of 40 years on Fifth Avenue.”
The Alpine Eagle Wempe 5th Avenue Edition features several unique elements exclusive to this collaboration, including a beautiful grey dial with the Wempe logo and blued Roman numerals, indexes, and hands. The contrast of the blue and grey is quite striking, and Super-LumiNova coatings improve legibility at night. Wempe selected the Alpine Eagle for the anniversary timepiece because it is both sporty and stylish, and has a robust movement of the highest quality. The watch is powered by the Calibre Chopard 01.01-C, which has a lengthy 60-hour power reserve and is a certified chronometer. The 41mm case and integrated bracelet are crafted from Lucent Steel A223, a new material that took Chopard and its partner, manufacturer Voestalpine Böhler, four years to develop. Lucent Steel is both strong and beautiful; it’s 50% harder than steel and has a luminous quality. Fittingly, it is limited to just 40 pieces.
The watch retails for $12,900 and is available at Wempe in New York.