Geneva Watch Days 2020 – Back to the Future of watch fairs
It was time for the world to return to the live watch events and Geneva Watch Days 2020 came as the first actual meeting during the post Covid era. For sure things will never be the same but this doesn’t have to transform an emotional industry into a virtual one. 17 iconic brands managed to bring Geneva Watch Days to reality!
Nobody imagined it like this even if the plans for Geneva Watch Days were announced before the pandemic. The concept behind the decentralized event came from Jean Christophe Babin, CEO Bulgari, and it was meant to reduce costs as every brand involved is free to choose its participating format and the venue to welcome clients and journalists. In other words, brands manage themselves and share costs only regarding communication matters and a few common decisions as having a central place where people meet, have dinner and see the new watches.
The lockdown delayed Geneva Watch Days initial plans for March but eventually everything was put in place for the end of August. As intended since inception, the watch fair took place for four days in a late summer sunny Geneva and it felt more relaxed than any watch event before. We made all the planning from before and moved from one hotel to another and from one shop to another depending on where the brands chose to establish their headquarter. The central “office” of the event was a big white tent where all the participants were invited to meet during the evenings and exactly this happened. All the meetings and presentations were accompanied by Covid regulations. So besides wonderful watches and industry VIPs, you could see masks, gels and distanced people.
Nevertheless, Geneva Watch Days 2020 proved the concept works. It can’t be the only type of watch presentation needed in the industry but it is for sure a more flexible one if not the most flexible fair to put in place, especially during times like these. Therefore, it offers all the positive arguments for a continuation and a strong reason to make the world rediscover the pleasure of visiting Geneva. MISTERWATCH was one of the few magazines to participate at Geneva Watch Days 2020 and the visit was highly rewarded by all the meetings and presentations.
Among the numerous novelties we discovered in Geneva, we need to highlight a few watches that drew our attention and proved, once more, that you have to touch a watch in order to actually feel the emotion behind its creation.
New Bulgari Aluminium Collection
Bulgari was the heart of the organization of Geneva Watch Days 2020 and had also one of the most fascinating list of novelties. The new Bulgari Bulgari Aluminium collection is the reissue of an iconic model presented 20 years ago when the Italian house launched the first aluminium and rubber luxury watch. Aluminium feels premium and its design looks even better in reality. The 38 mm diameter case makes it a perfect choice for men but also for women. Inside there is an automatic movement so you get all the elements of what can be described as a contemporary and “precious” Swiss watch bearing the name of an emblematic Italian jewelry brand. Design oriented may be considered also the watch case resembling a necklace case, long, simple and with an aluminium exterior.
Bulgari Octo Finissimo Tourbillon Chronograph Skeleton Automatic
The saga of the Bulgari Octo Finissimo modern icon watch continues with a sixth world record in six years. The premiere from Geneva Watch Days is the thinnest of its kind in the world, with an ultra-thin mechanical manufacture of only 7,40 mm.
Gerald Genta Arena Bi-retro
Bulgari owns the brand Gerald Genta since 2000 and now decides to relaunch the legendary name with a timepiece that reimagines the distinctive design codes of the brilliant watch maker. The limited edition is dedicated to collectors and it feels as precious as it looks.
Born out of the legendary collection, the new models bring mechanical excellence in the world of watches for women and moreover Bulgari takes pride in offering the smallest and thinnest tourbillon movement available in this particular segment.
Ulysse Nardin Blast
Ulysse Nardin comes out with a courageous collection inspired by the strong elements of nature: fire and ice, magma and glaciers. The skeletonized structure allows for admiring the new powerful automatic silicium tourbillon with a frequency of 2.5 Hz. As with all the other new and revolutionary collections, Blast bears the “X” motif declined in all kind of lines and textures. The automatic in-house tourbillon movement offers a 3 days power reserve and it is a first for the Skeleton collection. Blast comes in a 45 mm diameter case and it is available in 4 versions of materials and with various types of straps.
Girard-Perregaux Infinity Editions
The Haute Horlogerie house has the mission to underline its reputation as one of the perfectionists of the industry for centuries. And this is how we arrive at the Infinity versions of its most emblematic models. The definitive characteristic is the black dominant colour that highlights the perfect finishings and the impressive in-house movements.
Geneva Watch Days was the perfect moment to feel the Free Bridge and the Free Bridge Infinity edition with their new architecture.
An Infinity edition was created for the iconic Laureato collection where the dial comes as a onyx disc shaped and polished by hand. Another exceptional piece is the Cosmos Infinity Edition that features three exceptional complications: a lyre-shaped Tourbillon cage, a terrestrial globe positioned at 3 o’clock and a celestial globe that displays the constellations of the Zodiac.
Onyx continues to make up for the perfect black dial also in the 1966 40 mm Infinity Edition as well as for the Vintage 1945 Infinity Edition.
Breitling Endurance Pro
The colorful collection was officially unveiled during Geneva Watch Days as the the ultimate athleisure watch positioned in the brand’s Professional range. The new colorful collection comes with a 44 mm diameter ultra-lightweight Breitlight case, a Swiss made material 3,3 times lighter than titanium and 5,8 lighter than stainless steel. Inside the case there is a thermo-compensated SuperQuartz movement ten times more accurate than conventional quartz. Endurance Pro is available with a Diver Pro rubber strap in the same color as the inner bezel ring or a nato strap.
Ferdinand Berthaud Chronomètre FB 2RE
The House is celebrating its 250th anniversary by unveiling a new collection inspired by the historical piece Marine Clock No.6: the Chronomètre FB 2RE.
This new timepiece reinterprets the architecture and design of this Marine Clock. Fitted along its middle with a large panoramic window, the round 44 mm diameter 18-carat gold case (available also in white gold) frames a grand feu enamel dial with a complex two-tiered construction.
Beneath this traditional, uncluttered display lies an exceptional mechanism: the new Chronomètre FB 2RE combines the emblematic fusee-and-chain transmission with a one- second remontoir d’égalité mechanism. A model charting a course towards a new world of mechanical precision entirely in keeping with the lifework of Ferdinand Berthoud.
Each of the new models (red gold and white gold) are available in a limited numbered edition of 10 pieces.
Geneva Watch Days was the perfect moment to touch and feel the excellence of maybe the most ergonomic watch in the history of Urwerk. UR-100 is a perfectly shaped unconventional time showing piece and it gets even more fascinating in the gold version.
More details HERE
Bovet Virtuoso VIII Chapter Two 10-Day Flying Tourbillon Big Date
Offered as a limited edition of 50 timepieces, the Virtuoso VIII Chapter Two is a true tribute to Maison BOVET 1822’s two centuries of heritage and artisanal fine watchmaking. It is housed in the iconic Fleurier case with its crown and bow at 12 ‘o clock. But the case is also tilted along the 12-6 o’ clock axis, recalling the features of the iconic writing slope case of the Dimier collection.
The movement is the object of three patents. The caliber, fully produced in the Maison’s workshops, boasts an elegant circular “Côtes de Genève” pattern. A single barrel provides 10 days of power reserve. The big date and power reserve indicator share a figure-eight dial that represents luck, perfection, and infinity. The dials are made of intoxicatingly deep blue aventurine glass.
De Bethune Steel Wheels Sapphire Tourbillon
Celebrating 10 years of existence, De Bethune arrived at Geneva Watch Days with a special model in a limited edition of 10 pieces.