Baselworld 2016, which starts March 17 and runs to March 24 at the Messe Basel, will gather most major international luxury watch and jewelry brands together under one roof. The week-long event is expected to create enough interest to jumpstart a troubled industry.
According to Bloomberg, which explores some of the more exciting watches to be launched in the show, exports of luxury watches from Switzerland have been steadily declining since March 2015. In January 2016, exports were down almost 8% compared with the same month in 2015. The spike in the relative value of the franc starting January 2015 made Swiss watches suddenly more expensive. Coupled with global market uncertainty and China’s slowdown, the effect on the country’s watch industry has been a tough one.
Some major brands, Omega, Bulgari and Chopard among them, are expected to launch some buzz-generating watches in Baselworld. Here are some of them:
• Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean 600m: a small watch promoted as unisex, featuring a black enamel face and bezel, coupled with Omega’s proprietary pink Sedna Gold—an alloy of gold, copper, and palladium that’s scratch-resistant.
• Jaquet Droz Grande Seconde Off-Centered: this watch features a figure-eight pattern in the overlapping hour-and-minutes dial and seconds dial, creating a “lucky number 8” effect. The “Off-Centered” version is a new design featuring a polished black onyx face.
• Bulgari Diva’s Dream: a new woman’s watch by Bulgari, featuring 233 brilliant-cut pavé diamonds and blued hands, as well satin straps.
• Chopard L.U.C Perpetual Chrono: Chopard’s new watch (of which only 20 are made) is made with 18-karat white gold and features a manual flyback chronograph and a perpetual calendar.
• Romain Gauthier Logical One Natural Titanium: This timepiece features titanium, which is both scratch-resistant and strong but fairly rare in high-end watches. The movement features a chain-and-fusee style constant force system, and the winding is accomplished through a pusher.
• Classique Phase de Lune Dame 9088: According to Blue Art Info, this moon-phase design features white gold with a 30mm dial in white enamel. Other moon-phase design will come from Harry Winston, which will introduce the Premier Moon Phase 36mm.