Completed in 2012, Rolex’s production building in Bienne, Switzerland, is a four-storey structure using hallways and windows to give the building natural light, improving energy efficiency, and providing a welcoming environment to employees. At the top of the spiral stairwells, there are light wells providing vast amounts of natural daylight to flow into the facility.
The building reflects the products; designed to imitate the shape of the gear trains inside the movement of a watch. On the rooftop there is a restaurant that can accommodate up to 450 people, facing the surrounding nature – including the Alps to the south.
With 46,000 storage compartments, the automated stocking and retrieval system transports trays of components to workshops at a speed of three meters per second. This allowed the architects to create more ergonomic work areas for employees as local storage of components is no longer necessary, saving time, improving efficiency, and minimising damage and loss of components.