Interview with William Ko

Visiting IWC Schaffhausen on the Kruiskade

In the IWC Boutique, visitors are introduced to the various luxury watch collections of IWC: from their iconic Big Pilot watches and the recent collection of coloured ceramic models, to the classic Portugieser watches.

21 August 2023
By Lisanne Van Beurden

We visited the boutique on the Kruiskade to talk to William Ko, who has been working at Schaap en Citroen for more than six years and is currently Store Director in training. In the interview below he shares insights about the IWC brand, the renewed concept and more.

With the opening of the IWC Boutique on the Kruiskade at the end of 2022, Rotterdam had a first in Europe. As soon as you enter the store, you enter a fully immersive interior in which the most iconic product lines are central and important aspects, such as the technical expertise and material knowledge of the brand, are highlighted.

The IWC Boutique is managed in collaboration with Schaap en Citroen Juweliers, a household name within the Dutch jewelery and watch industry for more than 130 years.

Can you tell us a bit about IWC as a brand? What sets IWC apart from other brands?

William: "IWC, International Watch Company in full, was founded in 1868 by the American Florentine Ariosto Jones. His goal was to make watches with Swiss craftsmanship, combined with American technology, for the American market. The choice for Switzerland, and specifically Schaffhausen, was because he could use the water of Rheinfall to generate energy. He was a very intelligent man."

"IWC has developed into a leading watch brand, not only in Switzerland, but also worldwide. IWC's high-quality timepieces combine beautiful design with precision and detail. With a rich history, the brand now offers an extensive range of top pieces for both men and women."

What can one expect from the renewed concept of the IWC Boutique?

William: "When visitors enter our store, they actually enter an experience centre of IWC, partly due to the large LED screens and open displays on the ground floor. Customers can immediately touch and hold everything; everything is open and digital. This way they can experiment with the interactive touch screens. I believe we are one of the first stores to have integrated such advanced screens."

"Furthermore, the design of the store is very sleek and modern, yet it retains a warm atmosphere through the use of colour, materials and carpet."

"At the moment, the Pilot collection is the absolute favourite among our customers. It is available in various sizes and materials, so there's something for almost everyone."

William Ko

Which specific aspects of the IWC Boutique are you personally most excited about?

William: "The innovative architectural concept, combined with advanced digital touchscreens. In addition, we have a large screen in our lounge with beautiful images and sound, which brings IWC content to life. This gives that little bit extra to the boutique experience."

What is the most popular product in the store?

William: "At the moment, the Pilot collection is the absolute favourite among our customers. It is available in various sizes and materials, so there's something for almost everyone."

Do you have a favourite watch in the store? Which one is that?

William: "My favourite watch in the boutique is the Portugieser Perpetual Calendar. As a watch enthusiast, I look at the functions of a watch, and this watch has almost everything. A special feature, for example, is the presence of a perpetual calendar. With this unique function, the date automatically adjusted, even for the varying lengths of months and for centuries to come. It's a beautiful watch that you can pass on to the next generations."

Why was the Kruiskade chosen as the new location?

William: "The Kruiskade is the most luxurious shopping street in Rotterdam. Schaap en Citroen Juweliers already has two branches on the Kruiskade, the multi-brand boutique where various watch and jewelery brands are sold, and the Rolex/Patek Philippe boutique across the street. With the presence of our boutiques and other prestigious stores, such as Oger and Skins, this street was the best option for IWC in Rotterdam."

Thank you for your time, William!

Watch the video

Earlier we wrote about the IWC Boutique on the Kruiskade, the first boutique in Europe where the new architectural concept of the Swiss manufacturer of luxury watches is applied.

Haven't you had the opportunity to visit yet? Then watch the video below, made by Dax Andreas, to see what the store looks like and plan your visit soon!

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