Chopard: 150 Years of Excellence
The name Chopard began with watches. In the century and a half since the first small shop in Switzerland, Chopard has grown into more than 100 boutiques around the world, each dedicated to offering the highest quality watches, jewelry, perfume, and other accessories.
A Family Business
At first, the company known as Chopard was just one man, Louis-Ulysse Chopard. He was a talented watchmaker who set up his shop in the small Swiss village of Sonvilier in 1860. It wasn’t long before his skill at crafting exquisite watches attracted buyers from Eastern Europe, Russian and Scandinavia.
Eventually, the business was passed on to Paul Louis Chopard, Louis-Ulysse’s son. Paul Louis opened a new branch of Chopard in the town of La Chaux de-Fonds – but he wasn’t done. Soon, the business was big enough to move to Geneva, the city known as the capital of Haute Hologerie (Fine Watchmaking). Now a good deal closer to its diverse customer base, the Chopard venture could only grow. In 1943, the business passed to the next Chopard, Paul Andre, the grandson of Louis-Ulysee Chopard.
A New Era
Twenty years later, in 1963, Paul Andre Chopard was looking for a buyer that would continue to uphold the reputation for quality that the Chopard company had held for 100 years at that point. There were no family members interested in carrying on the business, so the time came to find someone new. Paul Andre Chopard finds Karl Scheufeld, who himself came from a long line of jewelers and watchmakers based in Pforzheim, Germany.
Karl Scheufele was a perfect match for Chopard, and he became the new owner of the company. Chopard began to grow like never before. Already known for the high quality and beauty of its craft, the Chopard name soon rose to the pinnacle of the watch and jewelry industry. In 1974, Chopard began to make jewelry and watches for women. Starting in 1989, the first boutique opened, with many more to follow.
One of the most interesting new products were the new perfume lines created by Chopard, not long after the opening of the first boutiques.
The scents created for Chopard through the work of the Scheufeles offer something for everyone, whether men or women.
One fine example of these scents is Casmir, which debuted in 1991. It has been characterized as sharp and oriental, with a woody fragrance. It is a distinctly feminine scent made with sandalwood and patchouli at its base. Hints of citrus, peaches, and melons round out the experience. This scent for casual wear come in eau de parfum spray, purse spray, and body silk.
Following the theme of the Happy Sport and Happy Diamonds jewelry lines is Chopard’s Happy Spirit fragrance, composed of a perfect balance of flowery and citrus scents. It is a mix of aromas from musk, cashmere wood, honeysuckle, raspberry sorbet, blood orange, magnolia, among others.
For men, there is Casran, which debuted in 1999. This aromatic fragrance has an intriguing oriental lavender spicy floral appeal and comes in aftershave or eau de toilette spray. Men can also partake of the always popular scent of cedar with Chopard Noble Cedar for Men. This cologne is infused with a musk, pepper, and bourbon at its heart, accompanied by notes of star anise, yuzu, and cardamom.
The Chopard Tradition
The care Chopard takes to offer the very best perfumes and accessories, as well as the continuing quality of its signature watches show it is still very much its own company, independently run by the Scheufele family. Karl and Karin Scheufele are still very much involved in the course of the business, with their children serving as co-presidents. Caroline Scheufele is in charge of the line of ladies’ accessories and lines of high jewelry, while Karl-Friedrich Scheufele, her brother, oversees the gentlemen’s collection well as the main manufacture facility in Fleurier. The Chopard Manufacture is where the L.U.C. watch movements (named for Louis-Ulysee Chopard) are produced.
Due to the leadership and vision of the Scheufele family, Chopard was called upon in 1998 to redesign the Palme d’Or (or Golden Palm) award given every year at the prestigious Cannes Film Festival. Caroline Scheufeld worked with a team of craftsmen to give the award a new look. Their work was so successful that Chopard remains a partner of the Festival to this day, creating new jewelry sets and trophies every year, as needed. Chopard has even come to award its own yearly trophy, beginning in 2001. A jury of film professionals awards the Chopard Trophy to two young actors, one male and one female, naming them the Revelation of the Year.
Today, there are more than 100 Chopard boutiques around the world, and they sell far more than watches. Their jewelry and other accessories are world-famous, with everything they make holding the same exquisite craftsmanship as their watches.