Photo Credit: SIHH 2015
We won’t judge you if you’ve never heard of Salon International de Haute Horlogerie (SIHH), aka 2015’s first major event for the watch industry — it’s among the most exclusive shows in the world where only 16 brands present on an invitation-only basis. Held in Geneva, this year marked the 25th anniversary of the annual event.
As Businessweek noted, the ambience and swag for the event is off the charts. “You want fois gras or sushi for lunch? No problem. You’d prefer truffle risotto and a glass of champagne? It’s on the house. The swag on offer is much more likely to be a tablet than a tote bag.”
Luckily for you, Haute Time was on the ground in Switzerland to capture all of the action. Here’s what you need to know from SIHH 2015:
1. The most creative watch brands are those that make the complicated simple:
The Portofino Hand-Wound Pure Classic is sure to make a lot of purists very happy, as minimalism and discreet elegance took center-stage.
2. Innovation takes time:
In Greubel Forsey’s GMT Black timepiece, the globe alone took 18 months to develop in order to achieve the visual effect desired, while the movement took years of research and development.
3. Don’t fix a watch that isn’t broken:
Known for its understated watches, A. Lange & Söhne has made only very subtle changes to the Saxonia line which has thrilled fans since it was introduced 20 years ago.
4. Chiming Technology is just about the coolest thing ever:
The sum of eight years of acoustic study, this prototype, developed in Audemars Piguets’ Le Brassus-based acoustic research lab in conjunction with the EPFL (Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne), places equal emphasis on both time and sound, reinventing the minute repeater category in the process.
5. Hublot is the best kind of party crasher:
Although not – officially – part of SIHH 2015, Hublot is at home in Geneva after an impressive takeover of the Grand Hotel Kempinski, an institution located at the heart of city. And if that wasn’t enough to convince us of its intention to steal the show, the Swiss brand – part of LVMH – has brought along a handful of seriously cool novelties.
6. 260 years can give you a lot of perspective:
SIHH’s oldest member, Vacheron Constantin, showed that vintage was very muchau gout du jour, with a brilliant homage to one of the brand’s 1920s chronographs.
7. Meteorite dials trump all other dials:
Jaeger-LeCoultre added a meteorite dial to its Master Calendar making it the first to be used within the context of a classic dress watch. The meteorite that Jaeger-LeCoultre uses derives from a single stone which has been registered in Sweden. It comes from the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter.
8. If you travel, go for the world time function:
The new Heritage Spirit Orbis Terrarum (from the Latin word for “Globe” and “Earth”) introduces the world time function by giving the wearer a bird’s eye view of Earth, with the North Pole at the center. It tells the hour in all 24 time zones, and keeps the dial legible, making it the perfect companion.