Presentation is one of the most powerful, and least discussed, tools in the luxury watch industry’s arsenal. From watch boxes to fully designed retail spaces, surrounding a timepiece with an evocative environment can be an effective sales tool, and creating the right environment for the right watch is often not a straightforward process. This is especially true for a brand like boutique watchmaker MB&F, which has built much of its enthusiast-favorite reputation on the strength of its fanciful and offbeat design sensibilities. To bring its retail spaces in line with its wildly creative timepieces, MB&F has announced an extensive revamp of its M.A.D. Gallery flagship retail spaces, and unveiled its concept for new smaller MB&F Labs hybrid retail spaces in multiple global luxury retail destinations.
MB&F currently operates M.A.D. Gallery locations in Geneva, Taipei, Hong Kong, and Dubai. These large, dedicated retail spaces are all scheduled to be remodeled in the brand’s new style by the end of 2023, but the new concept has debuted already at the Dubai M.A.D. Gallery space. The new look draws together MB&F’s love of midcentury science-fiction aesthetics with the look and feel of a high-end modern art gallery. The centerpiece of the Dubai location, as well as each subsequent refurbished MB&F retail space, is a broad blue reflective art piece the brand refers to as “the lens.” Designed by renowned Swiss interior designer Voltige Design & Architecture, “the lens” sets the tone for these spaces with its deep teal color and playfully warped reflection of the surrounding area. MB&F’s display solution for the watches themselves is equally distinctive in images, with each watch contained in a 5mm-thick glass dome atop a UFO-like tripod pedestal with a matching mirrored teal base. By contrast, MB&F’s choice of furniture is handsomely restrained, using authentic midcentury modern chairs and sofas with a strong Danish design bent alongside custom-made midcentury-inspired display tables with custom carved recesses for showcasing watches to customers. Taken as a whole, this new M.A.D. Gallery concept suits the MB&F spirit handsomely in images, with a light retro-futuristic look that resolutely refuses to take itself too seriously.
For smaller retail spaces that cannot host a full M.A.D. Gallery location, MB&F has also announced its new MB&F Labs retail concept. While much of the look of these spaces will echo their larger cousins, MB&F Labs are intended as hybrid retail spaces that will function both as sales locations for MB&F timepieces and full-fledged art galleries, where customers can purchase artworks from prestigious artists from around the world. The first MB&F Labs locations will launch in 2022 in Singapore and Beverly Hills, California.
By working thoughtfully to create retail spaces that echo the look and feel of its timepieces, MB&F’s new M.A.D. Gallery and MB&F Labs concepts should create effective and enticing luxury retail spaces. The M.A.D. Gallery Dubai is currently decorated in this new style, with other gallery locations expected to follow suit by the end of 2023. Both MB&F Labs locations are scheduled to be open by the end of 2022. For more details, please visit the brand’s website.