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If you’ve not yet checked out Lugaro’s Global Watch Company (GWC), it’s time you did – time – couldn’t resist when describing this new concept store sitting pretty, right next to the Fairmont Hotel Vancouver. GWC specializes in haute horlogerie and fine diamond jewellery, featuring exceptional Glashütte Original and Longines timepieces, and the rarest of diamond jewellery, including a 7.75 carat intense yellow diamond ring.

Luxury watchmaker Longines has been based at Saint-Imier in Switzerland since 1832, and has outlets in over 130 countries. I recently chatted with Walter Von Kanel, President of Longines worldwide, about the prestigious timepieces.

Q: Why are luxury watches so expensive and what sets them apart from less pricey brands?

A: With its 183 years, Longines is among the original and traditional watchmaking brands. We offer a wide range of high-end products... which are characterized by a unique combination of tradition, performance, elegance and one of the best ratio “price-quality." Investing in a Longines timepiece is the guarantee to acquire a high-quality product with an outstanding value for money and a contemporary but timeless elegant design.

Q: In a world where most people look at their cellphones for the time, why are watches still relevant?

A: The relevance of a traditional watch does not only lay in its function of telling the time, but also and especially in the status symbol it represents. Nowadays, a timepiece highlights your personal tastes and your way of life. I like to describe the watch as an emotional branded product.

Q: How long has Longines been at Baselworld, the biggest watch and jewellery trade show in the world, and what was exciting about Baselworld this year for you?

A: Longines has been present at Baselworld for many years now.This edition paid tribute to women with the launch of three new collections exclusively dedicated to them. I would like to underline that Longines is one of the few brands that has a share of more than 50 per cent of ladies watches.

Longines has decided to offer a new interpretation of an iconic collection, The Longines DolceVita. Initially launched in 1997, this line has been refitted to give new youth to its emblematic models. The Longines Equestrian collection is devoted to female equestrian sports lovers and consists of elegant models with shapes and materials inspired by iconic elements of the equine world. We also presented the Longines Symphonette, a new collection designed as a contemporary interpretation of the elegance.

As far as men’s watches are concerned, we are adding to our Conquest Classic collection a new chronograph with a moonphase display: the Conquest Classic Moonphase. We are also expanding our Heritage collection with new re-editions, as the Longines Heritage Diver 1967 and the Longines Pulsometer Chronograph.

We also presented an 18-carat rose gold re-edition of a beautiful pocket watch – the back is decorated with an engraving of a trio of horses – on display at the Longines Museum in Saint-Imier.

Q: What Longines watches are you most excited about this year?

A: As I am very much involved in the creation process, it is really difficult for me to choose one model among all the beautiful pieces we are launching this year. But if I had to select one model for men, I would say the new Conquest Classic Moonphase. This timepiece subtly combines the brand’s watchmaking tradition, sports heritage and innate sense of sophistication.

Longines has been committed to equestrian sports since 1878. It was therefore time for the brand to launch a collection dedicated to this long-lasting passion. So, as for the ladies watch, I would go for The Longines Equestrian Collection which boasts graceful models with various inspirations from the equine world.

Check out the beautiful collection of Longines watches yourself at Global Watch Company, 105-925 West Georgia Street in Vancouver.