Elite Traveler: Tell us about about Adler’s history.
Allen Adler: The house of Adler was founded by my great grandfather, Jacques, in Istanbul in 1886. Jacques learned his skills in Vienna, the capital of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, a beautiful city that was the capital of the art nouveau and art deco design movements, which heavily influenced him.
Since he lived in Istanbul, the capital of the Ottoman Empire, he was also inspired by Eastern motifs and curves. Our brand was thus shaped by this dual influence, at the crossroads of many civilizations.
Currently, my mother is our key designer, and she is still inspired by both Western designs (architectural masterpieces like the Chrysler Building in New York inspired a brooch, for instance) and Eastern motifs such as tulips or arches.
Our brand has always been exposed to people from different cultures, and has remained open to global trends. We ensure our products are elegant and classically beautiful, but also original in design and materials.
ET: How does your family business operate?
AA: As a family, we have a long-term vision, which includes new creative designs and the audacity to take risks. Nobody likes to fail, but we accept and learn from our mistakes. Failure means we tried and we will get it right next time. This attitude has been a key to our success.
Adler is a brand that is warm, approachable, and close to its clients: we have created friendships across time and place. We give our clients advice on the kind of jewellery that suits them best. We avoid hard-selling and selling jewels that do not fit an individual’s style or character. Our clients come first.
ET: Please tell us about your market penetration and future plans.
AA: We are expanding slowly because we want to retain control of the whole process, from design to sales, including the quality of our products and services. We plan to open a shop in shop in Qatar in 2014 and to increase our presence in Asia in coming years, but I cannot say more at the moment.
We are also reinvigorating our brand with a more contemporary feel while remaining true to our DNA, launching a new advertising campaign that is targeting a younger market, and starting a cycle of renovations for our shops that will last another 18 to 24 months.
ET: Can you talk about the new Eclipse collection?
AA: The Eclipse collection illustrates our new design that weaves carbon and diamonds. We wanted to use diamonds in a very systematic and ground-breaking way, using innovative techniques. This collection targets younger prospects in a much lower price range.
Eclipse jewels are less than US$10,000, which we believe to be accessible. We called it eclipse because it’s a play on black and white. We wanted to show the mystery and magic of diamonds set against the black matte background of carbon.
ET: Our audience is interested about your high-end pieces and what makes them unique.
AA: We have a distinctive positioning in the haute joaillerie landscape. We are risk-takers and trend-setters; we are not afraid to create bold designs, to set gems on unusual materials like titanium, carbon, or wood.
As jewellery creators, we look for innovation, individuality, and audacity. Our clients share these qualities. They know that we are different from larger brands: we maintain a customized relationship to our clients, we are constantly experimenting, and we reach for perfection and uniqueness when creating a jewel.
ET: As a jeweller, you have exquisite taste. How do you define luxury?
AA: For me, real luxury aims for an exceptional experience and perfect service. It is an added value, something a bit intangible and fitting to my particular needs at the moment.
Right now, I am staying at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel of Hong Kong, an amazingly comfortable and luxurious experience because I have been treated as a unique person. I am asked about my preferences and warmly engaged by the staff. This makes me feel very respected and taken care of.
For me, this is a brand that is extremely successful because the staff understands that it’s about the experience and quality of the relationship, which I really appreciate.
ET: Any special message to our readers?
AA: I would like to invite your readers to visit our boutiques in Hong Kong, London, Geneva and Gstaad. If you prefer exclusivity, we can come to you.
We sometimes have royalty and other VIPs asking us to organize a private visit with them and present our one-of-a-kind collections. We do it because we genuinely believe that there are very special jewels for specific individuals.
We invite Elite Traveler readers to get in touch with us and enjoy Adler’s innovative and bold creativity, as well as its warm and dedicated service.