Standing in a palm tree-lined parking lot, I am baking in the sun. My first time in Miami, I can feel the onset of sunburn and I’ve only been out of my cab for five minutes. I’ve come to Miami for Watches & Wonders and arrived a bit early to hunt down a specific Miami Beach address at the request of one Ben Clymer. Unfortunately, I’m lost.
Tasked with the enviable afternoon assignment of offering a follow up to this classic HODINKEE post, I’m trying to find Matthew Bain’s studio. For many of you, Matthew Bain won’t need an introduction. He is a prolific vintage watch dealer based in Miami, and you may remember him from his presence on the “How Vintage Watches Are Really Bought And Sold” panel at HODINKEE 10 last year, and no doubt some of you have bought a watch or two from him. Regardless, if you want to see some amazing vintage watches in Miami, Matthew Bain’s studio is the spot. Provided I can find it.
After walking in circles for longer than I’d like to admit while trading a few texts with Ben, I amble into the air-conditioned lobby of a nondescript office building. Sweaty and frustrated with myself for being late, I hope for the best as I get off the elevator and buzz the door for what I believe is Matt’s studio. As the door clicks open, the sheer volume of watch stuff within view would suggest I’m in the right place. It’s everywhere. Surrounded by ephemera most horological, I find Matt, his colleague Morgan, and Ben, pouring over a table stacked with trays upon trays of watches. I’m fresh off a plane from NYC and the beach can wait. I’m home.
Whatever your taste, Matt’s got a bit (or a lot) to offer. From precious Pateks and steel Rolexes (both old and otherwise), to APs, VCs, Cartiers, and Omegas, it felt as though I had entered some sort of a vintage watch fugue state. It’s not every day that, in the span of a few hours, I get to try on everything from an early solid gold Royal Oak to a 114270 on a jubilee, a COMEX Sub, and full set original Nautilus (with the cork box, scroll down!).