There was a time when visitors came to Baselworld expecting to be dazzled. But those days are gone. Exhibitors at this year's fair presented collections that were solidly grounded but lacking star quality. It was left to the independents to keep the flame of creativity burning.
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Mechanical watchmaking is a world of unbridled creativity, as SIHH 2019 once again demonstrates. Whether in the field of traditional complications or in the "new horology" playground, after a quieter period these extraordinary creations again have an audience. Here is our selection of the ten most outstanding of all.
The world equates watchmaking with Switzerland, so much so that it's hard to imagine it was ever any other way. And yet during the eighteenth century, horology's most brilliant minds descended on Paris, while Switzerland and Geneva had a reputation for "trinkets" and cheaper wares.
This second piece from Ferdinand Berthoud follows on from the Chronomètre FB1 in its different versions. This new watch immediately stands out for the regulator-style display that shows hours, minutes and seconds on three separate counters.
What's new in the Carré des Horlogers? How about magnificent guillochage, splendid complications, a hefty dose of innovation and some not-what-you-expected designs. "Carré" may be French for square, these contemporary brands have no trouble thinking outside the box.
As watchmakers go head-to-head to see not who makes the best products, but who tells the best stories, those brands with an authentic history have the most interesting tales to tell. So make yourself comfortable, because it's storytime at Dubai Watch Week.
Undeterred by the vintage-fuelled trend for slim watches, certain styles are bent on using up every millimetre of precious wrist space. Can there be too much of a good thing? Not according to these ten timepieces.