Not only does Switzerland have some of Europe’s finest Alpine passes , it now has a rather swish watch museum, courtesy of celebrated maker Audemars Piguet
Over in the country that brought you the original private bank account, there’s a building that ticks all the right design boxes, combining elegant simplicity with dramatic individualism.
Opened in May to the public, the Audemars Piguet museum in Vallée de Joux, Switzerland takes design cues from the surrounding landscape and the watch brand’s rich heritage and product range.
Designed by Danish architects BIG (Bjarke Ingels Group) and located is the country’s watchmaking heartland, next to the company’s original campus, the museum’s circular layout encourages visitors to take a preordained route through the building.
Indeed, user movement, context and the site’s harsh climate were key drivers in the design development.
BIG founder Bjarke Ingels says: “Our first idea was to wedge the new building in between [the existing ones], but then we thought ‘maybe we should be completely different and stay low, be part of the landscape’.
“On one hand we needed a guided route and on the other we wanted a flexible journey where you can jump from one point to the other.”
Well, we think they’ve got the balance just right, creating something wholly unique that blends into the wider landscape.
So if you have some spare time between tackling Switzerland’s famed Alpine passes (*see helpful box below), we recommend stopping by to experience this rather appealing design execution.