Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie kicked off in Geneva last week, and watch aficionados from around the globe gathered together to get a glimpse of the best of the best.
Each year this premier event (the SIHH) gets the pulses of watch enthusiasts racing. The world’s finest watchmakers reveal their new designs, and watch blogs around the web are buzzing.
This year I am particularly interested in the new additions to the event – the independent brands. They’re fresh, full of ingenuity, and set to make a big splash.
Here are some highlights from this year’s event.
Roger Dubuis - Excalibur Automatic Skeleton Carbon Fiber
One of the most interesting Maisons at the exhibition is Roger Dubuis. Their creations have a unique, almost medieval feel – the original “Excalibur” actually featured twelve miniature knights around the dial (the round table).
The brand is no stranger to skeletonized designs. In fact, they are among the world-leaders where it comes to open-working. This style of design leaves no margin for error, since each component is permanently on display.
Their latest offering is made from a carbon fiber and resin compound, which makes it incredibly light, and provides an eye-catching texture.
Gruebel Forsey - Signature 1
Didier J.G. Cretin, a master watchmaker, broke away from Greubel Forsey and went his own way, but the Signature 1 is a collaboration between these two design powerhouses. The result is breathtaking.
What stands out for me with this design is the unique balance wheel and the fact that it’s a manually wound watch with three hands – a first for this brand.
The “signature” series is set to continue, and I can’t wait to see what Greubel Forsey, together with the next independent designer will unveil in future.
Montblanc 4810 ExoTourbillon Slim
Mont Blanc is Europe’s tallest peak, standing at a dizzying 4810 meters. It inspired the brand name and also the special edition 4810 series.
It has a really slim case – only 4.5mm thick, and the special edition has three versions, each with a hand-painted dial, showing a map of Europe, North America or Asia, depending on the version. Each detail is perfect, and many hours of work went into the manufacture and design of their latest masterpiece.
In fact the watch was three years in the making, and only 36 pieces were made in all.
IWC Pilot’s Watch Mark XVIII
It’s a re-invention of the classic Pilot’s watch – and IWC do it best. The design stays true to the original B-Uhr watches from WWII, inspired by the 1930s Junkers Ju 52 cockpit instruments (an image of this iconic war plane is engraved on the back. The cases are over-sized at 40mm wide, and they’re really easy on the eye.
There’s nothing avante-garde about this regular Maison at SIHH this year. Instead their timepieces are made to feel authentic, and look a little vintage. IWC remains one of my favorites. It’s sure to be popular this year.
Roger Dubuis: https://www.google.co.za/url?sa=i&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=images&cd=&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0ahUKEwj-9OG6grjKAhUCSxoKHTTXBVgQjRwIBw&url=http%3A%2F%2Fblog.perpetuelle.com%2Fwatches%2Fthe-new-roger-dubuis-excalibur-automatic-skeleton-in-carbon%2F&psig=AFQjCNGx0LXo8OX5DU80zjVwrj8NHHuujg&ust=1453366523981844
Mont Blanc http://wristreview.com/?p=21002
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