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Bremont boss: AC35 has transformed Bermuda

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Yacht style: Giles English, co-founder of the UK’s Bremont watch company wears the limited edition rose gold Bremont AC35, inspired by the clean lines of classic racing yachts (Photograph by Akil Simmons)

Luxury British watchmaker Bremont has unveiled a new exclusive gold watch to mark its association with the America’s Cup.

Giles English, co-founder of the brand with brother Nick, said only 35 of the $22,495 rose gold Bremont AC35 have been made and will be sold only in Bermuda.

And Mr English added: “The America’s Cup collection is what people really want, rather than a particular team.

“It’s such a prestigious event and it will never date as well.”

Mr English said: “Getting involved with something like this, you get a short-term sales hit which is great, but it’s a long-term branding thing.

“It’s been very exciting to be part of it and we hope our involvement will resonate for years — I don’t think you get immediate payback on anything you do like this.”

The new watch features a black metal dial with classic printed numerals, America’s Cup trophy embossing and America’s Cup, Bermuda, 2017 details and was inspired by the lines of famous J Class yachts of the 1930s, like Sir Thomas Lipton’s Shamrock V.

And Mr English added he believed Bermuda would benefit from its host country status, not only during the event but afterwards.

Mr English, who first visited the island during the World Series races in 2015, is on the island to showcase the AC35 watch range at its retail partner, jewellery store Astwood Dickinson on Hamilton’s Front Street and as a sponsor of the superyacht regatta.

Mr English said: “That’s brought a whole new element because we are connecting with sailors and yacht owners. To have all these J Class boats out racing, it’s an amazing experience.”

He added: “We have come up with an America’s Cup collection of watches and we want that to be successful. It’s been a powerful seller for us, but it’s more than that — it’s being associated with one of the greatest ever sporting events.

“That history can never be taken away from you.

“And, whether Bermuda ever does it again, America’s Cup 35 happened in Bermuda. Considering there’s only been 35 races it has that historical significance and for us as a brand it’s amazing to be part of it for that reason.”

Mr English said that he had noticed major improvements on the island since his first visit two years ago.

He explained: “I’ve been really conscious in the last two years that the island looks different — it’s subtle things. Buildings falling down as you go into Dockyard have been restored and the vibe of the whole place seems to have changed.

“Bermuda has had a tough few years and changing that, if you hadn’t got the America’s Cup, it would be hard because the economy of the world hasn’t transformed in that time.

“It’s a very good shot in the arm and you have shown you can host a world-class event.”

He added that he knew wealthy Bremont customers who had travelled the world but had never visited Bermuda until now.

Mr English said: “They have flown in by private jets and they said how much they loved the place.”

He added that he had attended an event designed to pitch Bermuda as a yacht registry to visiting boats — which had attracted interest from owners.

Mr English said: “If that’s not a direct hit, I don’t know what is and that’s the beauty of doing an event like this.”

He added: “We’ve worked with lots of different organisations around the world and the Bermuda Tourism Authority and the business development team have been really very good — they’ve been very slick, on the game and on the ball.

“It really has been noticeable and that’s quite a hard thing to do in two years — transform a country and they’ve done it in a pretty effortless, slick way.”

Classic gold: The $22,495 rose gold Bremont AC35, produced in a limited edition of just 35 pieces to mark the luxury British brand’s association with the event (Photograph by Akil Simmons)