Vacheron Constantin’s Quai de Lile Annual Calendar to be officially released at the SIHH 2011.
It’s that time of the year again. Show time! In just under a week’s time the watch fair season will officially kick off in Switzerland with the Geneva Time Exhibition set to open its doors for only the second time ever on the 16th of January. Following closely will be the exclusive, invite-only Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie which officially gets underway on the 17th of January.
Whilst quite different both shows have attracted a number of exceptional brands who will be presenting their timepieces for the new year, many for the first time. The SIHH, as is traditional will be largely dominated by Maisons from the Richemont stable (the Group does not exhibit at Baselworld) such as personal favorites Jaeger-LeCoultre and A. Lange & Sohne as well as a handful of other very special brands including Greubel Forsey and Richard Mille.
The Geneva Time Exhibition on the other hand will be hosting a staggering 55 different brands (almost double the number of exhibitors from last year), including Cornelius & Cie showcasing the exceptional talents of Kees Engelbarts, Ladoire Geneve, Laurent Ferrier, Rebellion, and Speake-Marin among others. At the same time several brands will be hosting their own private events in Geneva, such as Urwerk who will unveil their all new UR-110 at the Hotel des Berges from the 17th – 20th of January and Christophe Claret who will present his new timepiece under his own brand name, Adagio, at the Beau Rivage Hotel from January 17th – 21st. However, these events, as with the SIHH, are strictly by invitation only.
So, what can you expect? Well, we’ve put together a small sample of the pre-releases that we think might take your fancy. This is by no means an exhaustive list, just something to whet your appetite and perhaps tide you over until Sunday. Of course, if it’s not enough be sure to check back tomorrow, because we’ll have plenty more for you!
Girard-Perregaux 1966 Small Seconds
An instant classic for us the Girard-Perreguax 1966 Small Seconds timepiece is the perfect companion when sailing your yacht leisurely around the Mediterranean or taking spirited drives through the Italian countryside in your vintage sports car. According to the brand the design is largely inspired by Girard-Perregaux’s 19th century pocket watches, giving it sense of enduring style complete with enamel dial.
Presented in a pink or white gold 40mm case, the timepiece is powered by a new automatic movement developed from the Girard-Perregaux calibre 3300 with a minimum power reserve of 46 hours. Presented on an alligator strap this is a watch that is likely to feature strongly in your regular rotation.
For more information check out www.girard-perregaux.com
Newcomer Zeitwinkel will be one of the brands exhibiting for the first time at the GTE this year and from the looks of things they have certainly come prepared. Of the four different models on offer our pick is the 273°, a timepiece that appears as elegant as it is functional. Highlights of the extremely functional dial (typical of German design) include the large dual window date display at 11 o’clock and the power reserve indicator placed just between 2 and 3 o’clock.
The movement itself is equally as interesting. A newly developed manufacture movement designed and manufactured in the Jura region of Switzerland, it features a robust three-quarter plate and bridges made of high-quality German silver and boasts a respectable power reserve of 72 hours. Precise German design at its best, this a timepiece destined to be a daily wearer suited to almost any occasion.
To learn more visit www.zeitwinkel.ch
Van Cleef & Arpels Five Weeks In a Balloon
Mixing things up a little is this gorgeous piece from Van Cleef & Arpels, aptly named ‘Five Weeks In A Balloon.’ Inspired by the classic adventure novel of the same name written by Jules Verne, the dial, decorated with champlevé enamel and inlaid with mother-of-pearl, depicts a hot air balloon rising into the air of Zanzibar.
Part of VC&F’s successful Poetic Complications collection the piece features retrograde hours and minutes with the balloon’s anchor and the bird flight providing the indications of time. Much like last year’s collection the Poetic Complications series are guaranteed to be a big hit with female connoisseurs again this year.
The Final Word
This is undeniably the most exciting time of the year for watch enthusiasts and industry observes the world-over and like you we are very much looking forward to what the coming weeks hold. As always our man on the ground, Ian Ellery, will be providing us with live daily updates from both the SIHH and the GTE, and perhaps we’ll even be able to smuggle him into some of the private, individual brand exhibitions!
Make sure you stay tuned; it’s going to be a sensational couple of weeks!