Today I will continue my BaselWorld2017 experience with the remaining personal stories from the 24th March. For those who didn’t read the first parts: Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3 are available with pictures from a few independent watchmakers and watch brands. I am not a professional photographer, but some of the pictures are good enough to be proud of them.
Time was flying much faster than I wished and I was already tired and even if I didn’t plan any meetings, there were a lot of people I’ve met and things I’ve talk about.
After I “finished” the AHCI corner I started to look around for my next “victims“. I stopped very excited at Lang&Heyne since I wanted to see with my own eyes the new Caliber VIII and the watch that was used for – Georg. But before that, I studied in the window the Augustus and the Moritz watches.
The Augustus is a spectacular watch in an 18k gold case with solid silver guilloche dial with Roman numerals, a complete calendar and an interesting event calendar with 12 entries personalised for each customer.
The Moritz watch is a moon phase calendar with solid silver dial fine blasted and coloured in champagne white featuring an enamelled moon phase and an earth disk in 18ct gold.
But my interest was quickly seized by the Georg timepiece: a magnificent curved case in white/rose gold or platinum that fits perfectly the wrist. The case itself is a beauty, irrespective of the movement and dial, the entire construction is full of architectural details.
To make a difference between the “white metal” cases, the platinum version uses blued steel lancet hands and the white gold variant uses rose gold hands.
This timepiece has a rectangular simple sunk enamel dial, art deco printed numerals with blue accents and a big and gorgeous “small” seconds sub-dial of almost 15mm diameter.
But the most spectacular part of this watch is the new Caliber VIII wich has not only a spectacular construction but also spectacular finishes.
This “simple” movement has very interesting bridge shapes with great finishes. The entire Haute Horlogerie finishes deserve a big magnifier and a lot of time. I spent a while studying these timepieces and the great Caliber VIII.
I would like to thank Dominique Warmer from Lang&Heyne Uhrenmanufaktur for her time and for showing me the watches. Please visit their Website for more information.
After this lovely encounter, I realised that I will not have enough time to see all the brands/watches I wished so I passed fugitively the Christiaan van der Klaauw booth and took a picture of the CVDK Real Moon Joure.
I ran to see the new Flyback Chronograph Manufacture from Frederique Constant – I wanted to see with my eyes the new FC-760 movement. And I can say – the watches are classical and beautiful.
I also stopped at the sister company Alpina to have a look at the new Alpina Seastrong Horological Smartwatch. I wanted to see if my impressions made while I was writing the article for Watchisthis?! would be the same after I get to play with it. These watches are great! And cost only 595 Euro.
After this, I relaxed for some minutes in front of Breitling, I was tired and the big blue screen was nice to watch.
Of course, I also visited other brands, including big brands part of big groups to gather information for my future posts on WatchIlove or for Watchisthis?! but they didn’t receive the amount of attention as the previously reported independent brands. Not because they didn’t deserve it, but just because I didn’t have enough time.
The time was running fast and I was trying to run faster so I can catch all the brands that I wanted to visit. Of course, that was not possible since my wish list was long and time so short, so I proceeded to the next important thing of that day – the Wine&Time event organised by a group of lovely and passionate people for other lovely and passionate people.
The first watches admired there were the 1961 Noche de Muertos by AOS Watches.
These watches have a beautiful case signature of AOS Watches, that for the 47mm looks very good on the wrist even for some of us that have it small. These two unique pieces are gorgeous. I would like to thank Roland for showing me the timepieces: – the purple one was an instant love. Please visit the AOS Watches Website for information.
Another extraordinary guest brand at Wine&Time was the Schwarz Etienne Manufacture. These watches are my kind of heaven and the first watch – La Chaux-de-Fond Flying Tourbillon is an example of modernism and innovation: not only that everything is visible through the open dial, including the micro-rotor and the tourbillon, the level of finishes are extraordinary.
La Chaux-de-Fond Flying Tourbillon watch is available with a dial with Roman numerals with SuperLuminova coating – I never saw a flying tourbillion and Superluminova combination before – suddenly, a traditional watch becomes ultra modern. The surprise was to find out “accidentally” about it.
Another secret prepared by the Schwarz Etienne Manufacture is that the Roswell Voyage watch holds a fragment of the most emblematic Swiss mountains.
I would Like to thank Luc from the Schwarz Etienne team for showing me these timepieces and for all the explanations and to Mauro and Raffaello for the nice talk and for the opportunity to see and play with this extraordinary watches. Please visit the Schwarz Etienne Website for more information.
Meanwhile, I had the chance to meet the person who inspired me to start the WatchIlove blog: Peter Chong from Deployant. His blog was the first one that I followed and, in case you don’t know it yet, I recommend it.
It was a pleasure to meet Sebastian Muller from Brellum Watches and to talk about his incredible timepieces: a modified ETA7750 movement with a lovely dial and incredible finishes.
Bellow is a picture with Sebastian, me and the watch I wrote about for Watchisthis?!. The article about Brellum watches is available HERE.
With this occasion, I saw his newest timepiece Duobox Power Gauge LE.1 Silver Snow – a watch with Reserve de Marche: a very limited edition of 8 pieces celebrating 8000 fans on Facebook. I will wait to see what he will do after reaching the first 100k fans.
I would like to thank Sebastian for his time – it was a true pleasure to talk about watches. Please visit the Brellum Watches Website.
I have to admit that I really liked to meet in person the men behind the watches I write about. Not always I have the chance to play with the watches I like and to discover the persons behind them is a pleasure and an honour.
The same was with Kyle Schut from Straton watches. I wrote about them recently for Watchisthis?! and I have to tell you that for the price paid you will receive a good quality and a good looking timepiece. Please visit their Website for more information
Other timepieces that I admired for the perfection of the details were the Lonville Watches and especially the Virage, which has a special relationship with Aston Martin DB4 GT (I am not only a watch enthusiast but also a car enthusiast with an obsession for Aston Martin).
I spent an incredible amount of time with Matt Faoro discussing and debating the finishes and the amount of work and processes involved in manufacturing these watches.
I would like to thank Matt for the nice and detailed technical conversation – it’s nice to find a detail oriented person with a pleasure to talk. Please visit the Lonville Watches Website and attend their event on 29 of April in Newport Pagnell.
My last presented watch from Basel is the Holthinrichs Ornament 1 – an incredibly refined watch created by an architect and manufactured in the newest way possible by 3D printing.
Even if it’s not 100% perfect, this prototype is very light and looks stunning.
The buckle is also 3d printed and is one of the most beautiful buckles out there.
The manufacturing technology permits some interesting designs making the watch light but robust and full of details.
Even the box prototype is good looking.
This is one of the watches that will receive a detailed review soon.
I would like to thank Michiel for the nice time spent together at Wine&Time. Buying one of his watches will bring you not only an incredible watch but also a good friend, Please visit the Holthinrichs Website for more details.
These were only a part of the watches I saw and a few of the people I talked to. After so many hours my pictures had the same clarity as my mind and most of them are unusable. I will take my revanche by writing about these watches and people asap.
After this wonderful event with people reunited by a horological passion, I had to hurry to the train station to catch the last train to Lörrach. I left Basel with a hand full of business cards and with a heart full of new friends.
After driving another three hours I arrived home. My Basel experience was a full 24 hours madness and I would like to thank everyone for this. My special thanks go to my better half, my wife that convinced me to go and is very supportive and the number one fan of the WatchIlove.
This is how my dinner table looked after BaselWorld2017: