WIth 2019 being the year of great changes for watch fairs and the industry as a whole, the trend is trickling down from Baselworld announcing that many of its major brands (mainly Swatch Group) have left to create their own fair in Zurich during the same period in March.
This news however did not taint the opulent and lively atmosphere of this years SIHH , as it has seen a 15% increase in visitors with lots of novelties and events. Of all the beautiful and intricate timepieces unveiled, a few stand out of the crowd and deserve another glance, or more…
1) Richard Mille’s Eye Candy
Richard Mille, known as the watchmaker of the world’s “Crème de la Crème” has chosen this year to appetize all horological enthusiasts with a rather unusual and sweet concept, presenting the “Bonbon Collection”.
A selection of 10 variations based on the iconic models (RM07-03, RM16-01 and RM37-01) divided into two families, “Sweets” and “Fruits” is like a fantasy straight out of Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory. The creative genius behind these mechanical candies, artistic director Cécile Guenat recalls the main idea was to revive the sweetest childhood memories in all of us. Even the word “Bonbon” is enough to make a grown-up smile.
Produced in 30 examples each, it is no wonder these treats will fly off the shelves.
2) Cartier Santos-Dumont: the rebirth of an Icon
Perhaps the most interesting and affordable surprise of this show is the new reedition of the Santos-Dumont collection by the illustrous french house of elegance, which is none other than Cartier.
Created in 1904 and introduced to the public in 1911, the Santos-Dumont, together with the Tank collection remain a historical pillar of the brand that has made its success for over a century. Initially conceived as a very refined pilots watch, the Santos collection evolved in many different variations, going from dressy to sport. But the grand novelty this year is that the Santos-Dumont, which previously only existed in precious metals will now be for the first time available in Steel.
Powered by a quartz movement, Cartier has opted to recreate an Icon at a very competitive price: Available in two sizes, the small version (27,5 x 27,5 mm) priced at 3’550 EUR and the large model (31,4 x 31,4 mm) priced at 3’800 EUR, making it one of the best dress watches on the market at that price point.
3) IWC’s new Pilot Collection: Flying High
This year IWC adds a new armada of Pilot Watches to its existing collection, with a limited edition Timezoner, a bronze Spitfire collection, a gold tourbillon and a stealth update in the TOP GUN range, there’s more than enough choice for every aviation and watch enthusiast to find their pick. Here’s ours:
IWC Timezoner Spitfire Edition “The Longest Flight”
With only 250 pieces made and priced at 12’400 USD, this timepiece is dedicated to the upcoming expedition of a restored Spitfire fighter plane flying around the world.
IWC Spitfire Chronograph in Bronze
Inspired by the legendary Royal Air Force Mark 11 navigation watch from 1948, this novelty features a new size (now in 41 mm), a new in-house movement (Caliber 69380) and a new bronze case. The perfect classy adventurers watch, priced at 6’250 USD.
IWC Pilot Double Chronograph TOP GUN in Ceratanium
Ceratanium, as the word indicates, is IWC’s proprietary new alloy of Ceramic and Titanium. In Jet-Black and with an imposing 44mm diameter, this stealth watch is a real lightweight, tough, anti-corrosive and scratch-resistant recon machine. Priced at 15’000 USD, coming soon at our official IWC and authorized boutiques.
4) MB&F’s HM6 Final Edition: a Horological UFO
After a 4 year run, the last version of the impressive lineage of the Horological Machine 6 has been unveiled and we are completely in awe.
Out of only 92 HM6 watches ever produced, only 8 pieces of the final edition have been made. Featuring this time a larger central dome to display the flying tourbillon and cased in a “biomorphic” stainless steel body, the HM6 is a bridge between High Horology and Art which will appeal to the most acquired of tastes. Priced at 210’000 CHF, it is highly likely that all 8 pieces have been already sold out as you read this.
Author: Ali Bedretdinov, founder of https://nosville.com/ NOSVILLE