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Turning Back Time: BASELWORLD 2018

BEFORE THIS YEAR’S SHOW, WE WANT YOU TO TAKE A QUICK RECAP OF THE SHOWSTOPPERS FROM YEAR’S BIGGEST WATCH EVENT

Baselworld 2019 is here. From 21- 26 March, the world’s most important watch and jewellery brands present their latest innovations and creations in Messe Basel, Switzerland. The biggest and most prestigious watch fair in the world, Baselworld is steep in history, having carrying its official name since 2003, but with origins that predates as far back as 1917.

In the eyes of watch aficionados and brands, there is no show more significant or important than Baselworld and as demonstrated in previous years, it is the show for brands to orchestrate their big reveals. Baselworld 2019 will no doubt see its fair share of limited edition models, novelties being unveiled, which will set the tone for the year ahead. Last year’s show certainly did the same…

BEFORE THIS YEAR’S SHOW, WE WANT YOU TO TAKE A QUICK RECAP OF THE SHOWSTOPPERS FROM YEAR’S BIGGEST WATCH EVENT

Baselworld 2019 is here. From 21- 26 March, the world’s most important watch and jewellery brands present their latest innovations and creations in Messe Basel, Switzerland. The biggest and most prestigious watch fair in the world, Baselworld is steep in history, having carrying its official name since 2003, but with origins that predates as far back as 1917.

In the eyes of watch aficionados and brands, there is no show more significant or important than Baselworld and as demonstrated in previous years, it is the show for brands to orchestrate their big reveals. Baselworld 2019 will no doubt see its fair share of limited edition models, novelties being unveiled, which will set the tone for the year ahead. Last year’s show certainly did the same…

Blast from The Past

Vintage appeal was one of the themes from last year’s show with many brands looking at their archives for inspiration. Omega delivered two reincarnations – albeit with modern movements – of the Seamaster 1948, in conjunction with the model’s 70th anniversary.

The Tudor 1926 certainly stole its fair share of thunder with a design that borrows elements of timepieces from the 30s and 40s. Retro styling was also clearly represented in Bell & Ross’ BR V2-92 Steel Heritage, which took inspiration from aircraft instrument panels of the 1960s. The vintage aeronautical theme was also heavily utilised by Zenith, with its retro Pilot Type 2 Extra Special 40mm.

A Push For GMT

GMT watches were well-represented last March. There was a strong presence from TAG Heuer who unveiled the Carrera Heuer 02 GMT – featuring GMT and Chronograph functionality – and Tudor who delivered the fan-favourite Black Bay GMT in Blue and Red.

Tissot also showcased a highly-affordable GMT timepiece in the form of the Chemin de Tourelle. The classic-styled watch features a date, chronograph, and GMT and comes with a ‘clous de Paris’ motif on the dial and a Powermatic movement with an 80-hour power reserve.

Innovation

Fine watchmaking remains the foundation for trade shows like Baselworld, which is why many brands use this show to showcase their technical abilities and craftsmanship. Zenith literally defied convention with the Defy Zero G, with a complication that utilises an innovative gyroscopic module to cancel out the effects of gravity.

The Carrera Tête de Vipère was also a standout. If featured an in-house chronograph movement, a tourbillon housed in a blue ceramic case along with a chronometer certification from the Besançon Observatory in France. Arnold & Son revealed its first world timer in the form of the Globetrotter, which features a three-dimensional world time display housed within a 45mm case.

Blancpain lifted the covers off its Villeret Tourbillon Volant Heure Sautante Minute Rétrograde – a reinterpretation of its ground-breaking flying tourbillion watch whilst Jacquet Droz captured the hearts and imagination of everyone with its Parrot Repeater Pocket Watch, showcasing its expertise in chronometric and automata.

Limited Edition Masterpieces

As with every year, there will be a handful of ‘limited-edition’ editions showcased at Baselworld. In 2018 there were several that drew a fair share of attention. More accustomed to its square watches, Bell & Rolls rolled out its BR V2-94 Racing Bird sporting a round case and a design inspired by the Reno Air-Race aircraft. TAG Heuer collaborated with Bamford to enhance its iconic Monaco chronograph whilst Omega looked to the stars once more with the unveiling of the Speedmaster ‘Dark Side of the Moon’ Apollo 8 Limited Edition. Blancpain also delivered a throwback to one of its earlier models in the guise of its new Bathyscaphe Day Date 70s.

Blast from The Past

Vintage appeal was one of the themes from last year’s show with many brands looking at their archives for inspiration. Omega delivered two reincarnations – albeit with modern movements – of the Seamaster 1948, in conjunction with the model’s 70th anniversary.

The Tudor 1926 certainly stole its fair share of thunder with a design that borrows elements of timepieces from the 30s and 40s. Retro styling was also clearly represented in Bell & Ross’ BR V2-92 Steel Heritage, which took inspiration from aircraft instrument panels of the 1960s. The vintage aeronautical theme was also heavily utilised by Zenith, with its retro Pilot Type 2 Extra Special 40mm.

A Push For GMT

GMT watches were well-represented last March. There was a strong presence from TAG Heuer who unveiled the Carrera Heuer 02 GMT – featuring GMT and Chronograph functionality – and Tudor who delivered the fan-favourite Black Bay GMT in Blue and Red.

Tissot also showcased a highly-affordable GMT timepiece in the form of the Chemin de Tourelle. The classic-styled watch features a date, chronograph, and GMT and comes with a ‘clous de Paris’ motif on the dial and a Powermatic movement with an 80-hour power reserve.

Innovation

Fine watchmaking remains the foundation for trade shows like Baselworld, which is why many brands use this show to showcase their technical abilities and craftsmanship. Zenith literally defied convention with the Defy Zero G, with a complication that utilises an innovative gyroscopic module to cancel out the effects of gravity.

The Carrera Tête de Vipère was also a standout. If featured an in-house chronograph movement, a tourbillon housed in a blue ceramic case along with a chronometer certification from the Besançon Observatory in France. Arnold & Son revealed its first world timer in the form of the Globetrotter, which features a three-dimensional world time display housed within a 45mm case.

Blancpain lifted the covers off its Villeret Tourbillon Volant Heure Sautante Minute Rétrograde – a reinterpretation of its ground-breaking flying tourbillion watch whilst Jacquet Droz captured the hearts and imagination of everyone with its Parrot Repeater Pocket Watch, showcasing its expertise in chronometric and automata.

Limited Edition Masterpieces

As with every year, there will be a handful of ‘limited-edition’ editions showcased at Baselworld. In 2018 there were several that drew a fair share of attention. More accustomed to its square watches, Bell & Rolls rolled out its BR V2-94 Racing Bird sporting a round case and a design inspired by the Reno Air-Race aircraft. TAG Heuer collaborated with Bamford to enhance its iconic Monaco chronograph whilst Omega looked to the stars once more with the unveiling of the Speedmaster ‘Dark Side of the Moon’ Apollo 8 Limited Edition. Blancpain also delivered a throwback to one of its earlier models in the guise of its new Bathyscaphe Day Date 70s.