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FROM THE ARCHIVE: How Jaeger-LeCoultre helped restore the luxury status of mechanical timekeeping.

In an effort to create the ultimate retail experience, luxury brands are offering everything from in-store spa services to gourmet eateries on the premises.

FROM THE ARCHIVE: Less than a decade under her hand, Cécile Bonnefond transformed Veuve Clicquot into an international brand, putting it on the tables of kings and aristocrats, and almost single-handedly inventing the notion of champagne as the only proper beverage for important celebrations.

FROM THE ARCHIVE: Theatre is a world of flops and triumphs, in which critical and financial success don’t always collide. It’s a world that David Mirvish, head of Mirvish Productions, knows all too well.

FROM THE ARCHIVE: When Louis Vuitton decided to create a watch collection, it built a state-of-the-art workshop from the ground up near La Chaux-de-Fonds in Switzerland’s Jura Mountains, the epicentre of the country’s watchmaking district.

MB&F horology puts a new spin on the traditional wheels of watchmaking.

Italian brand Pomellato is known for pioneering the concept of everyday fine jewellery with its prêt-à-porter approach.

The etching is so small—one five-thousandth of a hair—that it can only be seen by using a special microscopic viewing device. The miniscule emblem of Forevermark diamonds—the elite diamond brand from the world’s leading diamond company, De Beers—is inscribed on the table facet of each of its gems with the brand logo and a unique identification number.

If you look at any piece of Verdura jewellery, you might become aware of a vague sense of familiarity. You could swear you’ve seen it somewhere before, and you probably have—as they say in the jewellery world, there is no such thing as an original design. Except that if you’re looking at a Verdura piece, you generally are looking at the original design.

Within the archives of the Paris-based jewellery house Van Cleef & Arpels, there is 100 years’ worth of gouache drawings, photos of finished pieces, and snapshots of elite patrons—from the Duchess of Windsor to Princess Grace of Monaco—draped in elaborate gowns and wearing some of the heaviest pieces of haute joaillerie ever created.

If anyone creates a reality TV show about teams competing to open the coolest hotel—and it’s only a matter of time before someone does—Jason Pomeranc and Tony Cohen would be the stars.

How did we get the 60-second minute? What do the phases of the moon have to do with timekeeping? And why is watchmaking so popular?