A brand-new year has just begun and for watch enthusiasts that means one thing – trade fair season is upon us! Traditionally, watch fairs taken place early in the New Year, while autumn is the time for exciting auctions. Kicking off the season in style, the SIHH opens to visitors from 14 – 17 January. Read on to find out more about our favourite watches from this year.
SIHH and Baselworld: The changing face of watch trade fairs
In the last year it seemed that hardly a month went by without new headlines about watch trade fairs. The largest and most traditional of them all, Baselworld, is currently experiencing a crisis and was often the subject of reports as some renowned watch manufacturers had said they would not be associating with the fair any more.
This year SIHH welcomes a few new exhibitors bringing the total number to 35. Notable examples include the Swatch Group (Breguet, Blancpain, Glashütte Original, Longines, Omega, Tissot and more) and the historical manufacturer Bovet. On the contrary however, Audemars Piguet and Richard Mille will be calling time on the fair after 2019.
Ultimately though, the changes that can be observed at the watch trade fairs will not play a crucial role in the surprises that await us once again this January. The fair casts a spell over us as it’s always done. The following ten new trends promise to be some of the most exciting and important at this year’s SIHH:
1. IWC Pilot’s Watch
IWC is bringing more variety into its Pilot’s Watch collection with four new models. Firstly, there’s the Double Chronograph Top Gun Ceratanium, which – as the name suggests – is a double chronograph made from the exclusive material ceratanium, a ceramic-titanium composite.
In addition to this, there’s a Bronze Edition of the Spitfire Chronograph featuring a comfortable diameter of 41 mm as well as the 250-piece limited edition of the Timezoner Spitfire with a world time indicator.
However, the absolute highlight is the latest addition to the Le Petit Prince series – a 10-piece limited edition tourbillon featuring the collection’s characteristic blue dial with a 46.2 mm rosé gold case.
2. Cartier Santos Large Gradient Blue
Last year, Cartier relaunched the Santos collection in celebration of its 40th anniversary. The models were a great success, and not least because Cartier put a lot of thought into the new design.
Now, a year on, Cartier is continuing to make improvements: The large steel version of the Santos will soon be available with a blue dial. On this model, the indices are applied and not printed, and the date window, which is exclusive to the large model, features a black background.
3. Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Chronograph Camouflage
Going out in style. In its last year at SIHH, the manufacturer Audemars Piguet will be presenting three camouflage versions of the Royal Oak Offshore Chronograph. There will be a green and a blue model in steel as well as a rosé gold version with a brown dial and a brown strap. All the timepieces are 44 mm in diameter. The basic movement is by Audemars Piguet itself and the chronograph module is by Dubois-Depraz.
4. Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Ultra Thin Moon Enamel
Anyone who’s looked at a Jaeger-LeCoultre watch in any great detail, will be eagerly awaiting the Master Ultra Thin Moon Enamel. The blue dial of the 39 mm white gold watch is made from enamel and printed with a delicate guilloché pattern. This watch will be produced in a series limited to 100 pieces.
5. Piaget Altiplano Meteorite
It’s no secret that Piaget knows what they’re doing when it comes to making ultra-thin watches and the Altiplano Collection – launched at SIHH two years ago – is nothing new. However, what is new is this year’s version of the Altiplano with a meteorite dial. The crystalline structure is extremely eye-catching and the dial is made from a super thin layer of meteorite rock meaning that every model looks slightly different. As well as the simple Altiplano Meteorite there will also be a tourbillon version.
6. Laurent Ferrier Galet Annual Calendar School Piece
Laurent Ferrier has long been one of the top brands on the independent watchmaker scene. With the Galet Annual Calendar School Piece, the company once again presents a watch for 2019 that perfectly reflects the characteristic style of the young brand. This timepiece features an annual calendar with days indicated via a pointer-type date display on the dial. The manually wound calibre has a power reserve of around 80 hours.
7. Panerai Submersible Chrono Guillaume Néry Edition (PAM00982)
There’s also news from the House of Panerai. The manufacturer is dedicating its latest watch to the French freediving champion, Guillaume Néry. The 47 mm diving watch features a titanium case and an in-house-made flyback chronograph. In addition to the blue second hand, which has become a common feature of Panerai timepieces, the bezel and the rubber strap are also a pleasant shade of blue. The structured, grey dial is of particular note.
8. HYT H2O “Time is Fluid”
HYT is well known for its futuristic designs and impressive mechanical complications. This year, it’s all about liquid time display. The watches in the H2O series display hours with a liquid instead of hands. A bellows mechanism and a thermal compensator ensure that the liquid is pumped into the tubes to show the correct time. Minutes and seconds are displayed via conventional clock faces. The H2O will be available in eight different models and prices start from €103,000.
9. Montblanc Timewalker Chronograph “Panda”
Montblanc is one of the watch manufacturers that has made impressive developments over the past few years – and this year is no exception with new models due to be presented at SIHH 2019. Among them, two new versions of the Timewalker Chronograph have already been announced. Both are characterised by a black dial with white totalisers, also known as a “panda dial”. The 43 mm version has three totalisers at 3, 6 and 9, and the two-millimetre smaller version has just two totalisers at 12 and 6.
10. Parmigiani Fleurier Toric Chronometer
The Toric was the first watch that Parmigiani Fleurier made back in 1996. This is the simplest and most elegant range from the Swiss luxury brand. A new Toric Chronometer watch has already been announced for 2019; it features a classic three-hand dial and is 40.8 mm in diameter. The bezel features a fine guilloché pattern and the date window is placed at 6 on the dial. Furthermore, the accuracy of the automatic calibre has been tested and confirmed by the COSC.
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