Set in one of the oldest buildings of Port Louis, the Poncini family bears a name that echoes as a reference in luxury products. A beautiful tale of talents and exclusive creations…
A generation story
Born in Ticino, Switzerland, Alfred Poncini touches ground in Mauritius in 1925 with the firm intention to succeed. He gets a job as watchmaker for Guillemin, a French company specialised in luxury trade (watches, jewels, gifts, and tableware). A prestigious enterprise established during the 1850s in a magnificent house in Port-Louis, facing the emblematic theatre of the capital: the oldest Italian-style theatre in the Southern Hemisphere. Following the euphoria of the 1920s, the first global economic crisis hits the Guillemin business, which runs into financial difficulties. Alfred Poncini partners with Mr Roger Mathieu, an optician, and the two of them buy back the business. The enterprise becomes Mathieu-Poncini. During the 1950s, José and Aldo Poncini, the sons of Alfred, acquire the shares of Mr Mathieu. The firm then becomes PONCINI & Fils (PONCINI & Sons), before taking its definitive name, PONCINI, in 1975.
This beautiful family story is that of passionate men whose vision and efforts have been passed down from generation to generation. Alfred, José, Aldo and today, Christian have succeeded each other at the head of the company without ever compromising between traditions and innovation. Boasting thirty years of experience within the company, the gemologist Christian Poncini can already see his sons Fabio and Jérôme at the helm of the family business, both of them having completed their lengthy studies abroad.
A luxury empire
Through the years, the PONCINI group has grown, and today, it has one of the most modern workshops in the island. In addition to the renowned shop in Port-Louis, others in Curepipe, Grand Baie and Caudan have been opened. Since the late 1980s, a partnership with major hotel groups has witnessed the setting up of duty-free shops in the best hotels of the island. Even though the universe of PONCINI extends from watch-making to tableware, its history is mainly and intrinsically linked to jewellery making.
For decades, the company has been fostering an unrivalled expertise, applying rigorous principals, while remaining driven by creative spirit. Christian Poncini creates his collections from what he calls “a spontaneous burst of inspiration.” His ring, bracelet, earring, pendant and necklace sketches come to life with the ow of his emotions. Like an artist, he draws his inspiration from everything that surrounds him. He designs in his jewellery workshop unique pieces, some of which are at times tailored for customised orders. His designs are daring and colourful, true to his island’s image.
For him, “Luxury is the privilege of being able to choose”; choose one’s gems and one’s model to achieve one’s dream. PONCINI continuously renews its collection and offers a very broad range of products, unrivalled in the region. Many prestigious brands such as Breitling, Cartier, Chaumet, Longines, Omega, Rado, Rolex, TAG Heuer, Tissot, or even Zénith, have entrusted it to represent them in the island.
“The objective is not to be the largest, but the best in terms of service, products, and quality” says a Christian who’s confident of his strengths.
The brand reputation is solidly anchored, and the trade name PONCINI is ever glowing internationally, be it for the successful export of some creations to Europe, or to enter new markets such as, at present, the Seychelles, and in the future Madagascar and other African countries.