Leon Adams, Cellini's Founder and President, has always been passionate about haute horlogerie. In 1977, it led him to open his first showroom in the Waldorf- Astoria, where his collection of hard-to-find timepieces struck a chord with a growing group of American collectors, who were rediscovering the art of mechanical watchmaking.
As Cellini’s reputation grew through the years, so did its watch collection, which was one of the first in America to include brands like A. Lange & Söhne, Audemars Piguet, De Bethune, Franck Muller, Laurent Ferrier and Richard Mille. As proof of the company’s influential standing in the watchmaking world, Cartier selected Cellini to be one of only four U.S. dealers authorized to carry Cartier’s Fine Watchmaking Collection.
A veteran of countless watch fairs in Basel and Geneva, Adams has seen trends come and go, deepening his perspective and sharpening his ability to quickly separate the timely from the timeless. That keen eye, fueled by his genuine excitement for the art of horology, is why watch collectors trust Cellini.
“We’re constantly looking for new and innovative watchmakers, but we’re extremely selective about who we represent,” Adams explains. “Finding a brand that produces unique watches isn’t enough. The watches—and the watch company—must be built to last. Quality is foremost in everything we do at Cellini.”
Today, Cellini covers the spectrum of haute horlogerie with a phenomenal collection that appeals to all types of horological enthusiasts, from budding aficionados in search of their first fine timepiece, to savvy collectors who prize the extensive selection of rare watches, the likes of which you will not find anywhere else. “The depth of our collection means you can find what you want, when you want it,” Adams says. “That selection is what sets us apart and the reason people keep coming back.”
Cellini’s Madison Avenue boutique, opened in 1987, is home to an expertly curated collection that brings luxury to a human scale and pace. Though behind glass, the jewelry and timepieces seem to erase any barriers between them and their admirers by sheer force of personality. The gems (both horological and otherwise) project an air of approachability from their eye-level perches on the wall behind the counters, coaxing even the casual shopper to consider taking a natural or mechanical marvel in his or her hands.
THE PERFECT FIT Merchandise is far from the only reason the most discerning connoisseurs opt for Cellini. A knowledgeable staff provides impeccable service before, during and after a purchase.
Cellini’s horological specialists live and breathe watches, and they draw upon this wealth of knowledge to help each watch lover find the perfect fit. For those enchanted instead by shimmering works of art, Cellini’s jewelry experts put a world of exquisite beauty at your fingertips. The experience they provide puts the emphasis on the client’s needs.
While many customers know exactly what they want, some are uncertain or hesitant. It is for them that the Cellini staff shines brightest. “Selecting a fine piece of jewelry or your first luxury watch is definitely a process; you don’t just come in and buy it. Getting to know our customers and understanding their expectations is key to assisting them in making educated decisions,” says Adams. “We take a great deal of satisfaction in helping our clients make a decision that is best for them.”
Irresistible jewels, sophisticated horology, inviting venues and dedicated staff —it’s no wonder that after 40 years Cellini continues to be one of the most respected and successful boutiques of its kind. In this wildly competitive city, where storefronts, skylines and styles change as often as the weather, Cellini’s longevity is a testament to the power of an irreplaceable experience.