October 19, 2022
A quick look around the watch industry will reveal that many of the hottest models are those that are no longer in production or otherwise unavailable at a retail level — and this is true or for nearly all of the world’s most famous manufacturers. Regardless of whether we are talking about the current-production stainless steel Rolex models that all seem to have multi-year waiting lists at retailers, or the ultra-rare Richard Mille timepieces that were produced years ago and in a limited run of just a couple dozen examples, it seems that a lack of retail availability is almost one of the prerequisites for many of the industry’s most fiercely-pursued hype watches. That said, retail purchases make up the backbone of the watch industry, and if there are no new watches entering the market from a retail level, the watch industry as we know it ceases to exist. Additionally, when the secondary market becomes the only place where you can purchase these timepieces, having a trusted and secure source for them becomes an increasingly important part of the process.
Westime is already one of Los Angeles’s most prominent retail destinations for luxury watches. Located in the heart of Beverly Hills among all of the various brands’ boutiques, Westime is an authorized retailer for dozens of different manufacturers, spanning the affordable to the aspirational and everything in between. With that in mind, we live in a world where many of the industry’s top brands’ own boutiques perpetually sit with empty display cases (or with “exhibition only” models), and Westime recognizes that sometimes the specific watch a person wants to buy simply isn’t one that is available brand-new at a retail level. To cater to the ever-growing market of luxury watch collectors who are interested in limited editions, discontinued pieces, or models that are otherwise not attainable directly from dealers or even from brands’ own retail channels, Westime has opened a new certified pre-owned watch boutique on the second floor above its Beverly Hills location.
Despite being located directly above the company’s flagship Westime Beverly Hills retail location, the Westime Certified Pre-Owned Boutique has its own dedicated team of sales associates and currently even has its own separate entrances located on Via Rodeo and Wilshire Blvd. Westime has eventual plans to internally connect the two spaces so that all customers can simply use the main flagship retail entrance and then simply go upstairs should they wish to shop their pre-owned selection. However, for the time being, visiting the Westime Certified Pre-Owned Boutique is almost like finding the entrance to a luxury watch speakeasy, where you take a nondescript doorway off to the right-hand side, just before you get to the front entrance of Westime Beverly Hills. From there, you take an elevator up to the second floor, and as soon as the elevator doors open, you are greeted by the front entrance to Westime’s pre-owned boutique space.
To call the Westime Certified Pre-Owned Boutique just a retail environment is a bit misleading since it is created to be a multi-purpose space centered around some of the industry’s most famous and hard-to-find luxury watches. Large arched windows let in plenty of natural light, and while there certainly are plenty of grail-worthy timepieces on display in modular glass cases, the Westime Certified Pre-Owned Boutique also contains an integrated bar and a private dining room, complete with full A/V capabilities, and can be used for private events and manufacturer exhibitions. Although the primary function of the space is to function as a retail environment for the company’s pre-owned business, Westime fully plans to take advantage of its flexibility, and featured brands will be able to host events and exhibitions for their VIP customers.
Although Richard Mille has one of its own boutiques just around the corner from Westime in Beverly Hills, you will only find current-production models on display there, and arguably, more importantly, they likely won’t actually have any that are available for purchase. That said, the Westime Certified Pre-Owned Boutique is the only authorized point of sale for certified pre-owned Richard Mille watches in the Americas, and inside Westime’s new space is a dedicated Richard Mille lounge that features the signature black and white furnishings of the brand and has several of its most famous models of all time on display. Additionally, since Westime is an authorized seller of certified pre-owned Richard Mille timepieces, each one that they sell is accompanied by a 2-year international warranty, a certificate of authenticity, a service booklet, a brand-new strap, and a presentation box.
The space itself looks fantastic, and the large windows and ample amount of natural light offer a noticeable contrast compared to many other luxury watch retail locations that have to rely solely on showroom lighting due to security considerations. Additionally, beyond just having wristwatches on display, you will also find other types of interesting items, such as clocks and other pieces by MB&F and L’Epée. That said, the focus of Westime’s Certified Pre-Owned Boutique is most certainly watches, and while Ariel and I were there to visit the new space, we got to see some truly exceptional pieces.
Alongside Rolex Daytona watches in both solid-gold and platinum was a stainless steel Patek Philippe Nautilus ref. 5711 with a green dial, a Richard Mille RM 11-03 in red quartz TPT, and my personal favorite among the bunch we saw that day, the Richard Mille RM 038 “Bubba Watson” Tourbillon. Part of why I enjoyed seeing the RM 038 so much is because that watch originally came out back in 2011. I remember being in college when it first came out and being absolutely floored when I learned its retail price. Richard Mille has released countless different pieces since then that are arguably all more technologically advanced (and expensive), but the original RM 038 will always hold that special place in my heart. That said, only 38 examples were originally produced, and since it has been more than a decade since the model was first launched, most are locked away in personal collections, and getting a chance to try one on my wrist after all these years, undeniably felt a bit special.
Another interesting thing about the Westime Certified Pre-Owned Boutique is that new watches will be added every two weeks in a bi-weekly drop that has been curated based on industry trends and the interest expressed by Westime’s customers. The newly added watches will be presented in detail on Westime’s website, and they will be displayed at the Certified Pre-Owned Boutique, where buyers will have the opportunity to see them in person and make their purchase. With that in mind, unsold watches that move out of the current collection that is on display will still be available for purchase, and interested parties will simply need to request them from Westime’s Certified Pre-Owned Boutique staff. The Westime Certified Pre-Owned Watch Boutique is located on the second floor of 206 North Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills, California, and store hours are 10am to 6pm Monday through Saturday, and 12pm to 5pm on Sundays. For more information, please visit Westime’s website.