Author: Arsene Wargas

Is Baselworld Not Interesting Anymore? Here Key Insights About The Current Situation.

Is Baselworld Not Interesting Anymore? Here Key Insights About The Current Situation.

This year several watchbrands and watchmakers decided to quit Baselworld. Each one had probably a different reason but at the end a common context is about to set the fate of the international watch fair. Baselworld used to be the unique touch point between retailers and brands…. not anymore. From a contextual point of view, Baselworld has gone through different phases and it is not the first time people say the international watch fair is over. Why today, more than never the risk of a non-happy-ending is there? It all starts with the alignment of a specific context. Economic crisis generates an ongoing discussion all year long Since 2009, economic crisis hit the watchmaking industry very hard. Sales were uncertain and sell-in stagnated while sell-out was stuck in an economic desert. Let’s imagine the stress of watch companies welcoming potential buyers once a year at Baselworld and hoping they will…

A Brief History About The Hands Of A Watch – Types and Origins.

A Brief History About The Hands Of A Watch – Types and Origins.

It is hard to find good information about watch hands despite the fact they are very important in watch making. In deed, how can you see time without them and how can you celebrate watchmaking accuracy, know-how and performance without them? Nevertheless we it is hard to find good information about the different types, the history and who is doing what. Here is what we know. Hands Of A Watch, A Bit Of History It is said that the first hands factory in Switzerland was founded in 1812. It was Wagnon Frères in Geneva. The founder is Charles Wagnon and his grand-son, Ami Wagnon exhibited the company products in Paris in 1878, in Zürich in 1883 and in Chicago in 1893. By 1896, Wagnon Frères were producing around 400 different sorts of hands. By the the years 1900’s, there were more than 60 factories in Switzerland producing hands for the…

Claude Meylan, Watchmaker and Sculptor of Swiss Heritage

Claude Meylan, Watchmaker and Sculptor of Swiss Heritage

There are hundreds of watchmakers producing their watches in Switzerland. Some brands are for sure more outstanding than others and a few brands have an interesting story to be told. Claude Meylan is a hidden gem in the history of Swiss Watchmaking. Expert in the savvy technique of skeletonisation the Swiss manufacturer will sculpt the Swiss heritage as a leightmotiv to innovate and surprise the watch aficionado. Each year, Claude Meylan crafts its watches in ways that only an artist would care for his precious creations. This year more than never, Swiss heritage is at honor. From Swiss icons to Swiss traditions, Claude Meylan creates an original and endless universe. The Skeleton Watch Art by Claude Meylan A skeleton watch is a mechanical watch, in which all of the moving parts are visible through either the front of the watch, the back of the watch or a small cut outlining…

The Parmigiani Fleurier Bugatti Type 390

The Parmigiani Fleurier Bugatti Type 390

Probably one of the most outstanding pieces seen during the SIHH is the extraordinary Parmigiani Fleurier Bugatti Type390. This partnership between two amazing brands, has produced outstanding master-pieces for more than a decade. During the SIHH 2018, we were lucky enough to attend to a private presentation of this model, a great moment that allowed us to ask more about this great watch. « Parmigiani Fleurier’s Bugatti collection is a bit like the court jester. It dares to do it all, defies limits and explores the field of possibilities without fearing conventions, or the guillotine. » – Michel Parmigiani The Bugatti Chiron, The Watch Inspiration The partnership between Parmigiani Fleurier and Bugatti takes deep foundations in shared values: the passion, the mastery of technology, the aim of a “jusqu’au-boutisme” approach. The exclusive approach in watchmaking, underline the precision and the extraordinary know-how of the French automotive company. Bugatti has a very precise…

MIDO Commander Big Date: Celebrating 100 Years of Quality, Innovation And Design.

MIDO Commander Big Date: Celebrating 100 Years of Quality, Innovation And Design.

When Georges Schaeren founded MIDO one hundred years ago, he set the principles that would allow the Swiss watchmaker to evolve through the years: impeccable quality, always-on innovation philosophy and perfect design. To start this year of celebrations, MIDO launched a Commander Big Date. It reflects the spirit of the company as an international benchmark in terms of watchmaking. MIDO Commander Big Date, the very best of MIDO. One hundred years is a great anniversary and MIDO decided to make things BIG. With the launch of the Commander Big Date, the Swiss watchmaker capitalized in the great design codes of the Commander and added something new. This new line adopts the codes that have given the Commander its legendary status: a sunray satin-finished dial, protected by an elegant round case in satin-finished stainless steel and enhanced by a polished bezel. The Commander line is a true hymn to iron, to the curves…

SIHH 2018: The Renaissance of the Parmigiani Kalpa Line

SIHH 2018: The Renaissance of the Parmigiani Kalpa Line

The SIHH is also the moment in the year that Geneva sees what we could call successful comebacks. This year, it is with great pleasure we see the return of the Parmigiani Fleurier Kalpa line. Launched in 1998 by Michel Parmigini himself, the Kalpa line remains a very contemporary watch. Celebrating the 20th anniversary, Parmigiani brings back the Kalpa line with a very interesting model and variations. This watch is, as any watch manufactured by Parmigiani, a true wonder in terms of watchmaking. Every single detail is taken good care and the more you look to this watch, the more you think it is a great watch. The first striking element is the watch case and its distinctive tonneau shape. It became a true classic in watchmaking. With the Kalpa line, Parmigiani has shaped the movement in ways that fit the watch case perfectly. A very interesting detail of design…

SIHH 2018: Inside The New Hermès Exhibition Booth

SIHH 2018: Inside The New Hermès Exhibition Booth

One of the novelties this year at the SIHH is the arrival of Hermès as new exhibitor in the luxury tradeshow. LuxuryActivist took the time to give you a snapshot of how the new Hermès Booth looks like. Get into this insider experience and discover the world of La Montre Hermès, now in Geneva. The principle at the SIHH is that every stand is similar in the outside, which provides a contemporary and modern ambiance. What brands can do is to create its own universe inside each stand. Hermès mandated Denis Montel, from the RDAI interior architecture agency, to design a warm, sophisticated, contemporary setting. The furniture offers a unique journey on which sound, colour and light promotes serenity. Everything is done to welcome visitors in a great hospitality. There is a vast atrium with maplewood screens as well as steles serving as showcases. For Hermès, each detail is important and…

SIHH 2018: Audemars Piguet Celebrates The 25th Anniversary Of The Royal Oak Offshore

SIHH 2018: Audemars Piguet Celebrates The 25th Anniversary Of The Royal Oak Offshore

This year, Audemars Piguet has a strong inspiration to be revealed during the Geneva SIHH. It is the 25th anniversary of the Royal Oak Offshore. The Royal Oak became one of the icons of modern watchmaking. Distinctive and highly qualitative, it signs with golden letters the reputation and the style of the brand. Audemars Piguet Royal Oak range, timeless and iconic For over a century, Audemars Piguet has devised endlessly inventive horological masterpieces. Throughout the years, Audemars Piguet watchmakers have surpassed technical and theoretical boundaries to craft ever more demanding mechanisms. Audemars Piguet is the oldest fine watchmaking manufacturer still in the hands of its founding families (Audemars and Piguet). Since 1875, the company has written some of the finest chapters in the history of Haute Horlogerie, including a number of world firsts. In the Vallée de Joux, at the heart of the Swiss Jura, numerous masterpieces are created in…

SIHH 2018 – New brands, new configuration… new year!

SIHH 2018 – New brands, new configuration… new year!

In two month time, the 28th edition of the Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie (SIHH) will open its doors. Last year there was already big changes, especially with the open day to the public. In 2018, the luxury watch trade show will pursuit its development in welcoming new brands, some of them moving from Basel (the other fair) to Geneva. Here is what we know so far. SIHH 2018, new brands For this 28th edition, the SIHH will welcome 6 new prestigious brands bringing the total number of exhibitors to 35, with 18 Historic Maisons and 17 brands in the Carré des Horlogers. The new brands are: Hermès Armin Strom DeWitt Chronométrie Ferdinand Berthoud F.P. Journe Romain Gauthier These new brands contribute to the ambition of SIHH to become the biggest luxury watch-making trade-show in the world. While its Swiss rival, Baselworld is struggling to find its new cruise…

Pre-SIHH 2018: Hermes Arceau Chrono Titane

Pre-SIHH 2018: Hermes Arceau Chrono Titane

The 2018 edition of SIHH will be very interesting as there are big positive changes. New brands are joining and one of them is Hermès. After several years in Basel, Hermès has decided to join Geneva and the Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie. We welcome Hermes and are thrilled to share here a first hint of what is coming in January. The first open window to what Hermès will reveal at its first participation to the Geneva trade-show is the new Hermès Arceau Chrono Titane. Hermès Arceau, a poetic story since 1978 Hermès and watchmaking is a long passionate story. Founded in 1837 by Thierry Hermès, the French luxury brand immediately made its name as one of the most high-end equestrian manufacturer for the wealthy and the major Royal courts in Europe. Already in the 1910’s, Hermès started commercializing watches that had already the Hermès philosophy and this only…

Single-hand watches, less is more.

Single-hand watches, less is more.

In Watchmaking, time is a serious matter. Hours, minutes and seconds are the pulse of a watch heartbeat. And time never stop. Despite the fact this might sound incredibly strict, some watchmakers brought a different way to measure time thanks to single-handed watches. Single… What? A watch hands are the reason why we look to our watch In watchmaking one key component are the hands of a watch. Without them you cannot see time. They have the function of transmitting the time indication from the movement to the dial in which you have the time marks. Or then it means you have a digital display. And do you know why they turn right around the dial (and not left)? This is because of the first solar clocks. The shadow projected on the clock dial would follow the sun position and so would turn around to the right side. Probably by…

Slim d’Hermès new models, amazing utter simplicity.

Slim d’Hermès new models, amazing utter simplicity.

Hermes and watchmaking is a long love story. From craftsmanship to poetry, Hermès rolls out a beautiful story for watch-lovers. When the French luxury company launched the Slim d’Hermès, it was not only a big statement but also they created an amazing creative platform for future developments. With 2 new variants today, the Slim d’Hermès features opaque black lacquer or translucent magnolia white. Crafted in the Hermès watchmaking workshops and available as small and very small models, the Slim d’Hermès watch reveals itself exactly as it was conceived: with utter simplicity. Slim d’Hermès, purity and sophistication as a creative paradox Philippe Delhotal is the Maison Creative director. He explains that this collection was born thanks to the encounter of different designers and artisans. The idea was to get into the Hermès essence with a pure and sharp design. There is something very contemporary in this design that places La Montre…

Stainless Steel, much more precious than you think for watches.

Stainless Steel, much more precious than you think for watches.

One of the most iconic material for a watch is definitely the Stainless steel used essentially in the watch case and the watch bracelet. Most of people know what is Stainless steel about, but did you know that there are several different types of steel used in watch-making? How Watchmakes came to use Stainless Steel and how different is one from another? Stainless steel, an amazing invention, as well as a great mistake Some inventions are planned, others happen by chance. When in 1913 Harley Brearley was trying to improve the resistance of gun barrels, he would not imagine that his work would change the way we would use steel in the 20th century and beyond. He was working at that time for Firth Research Laboratories in the UK. He came up with the idea that if he would make an alloy of steel and a certain quantity of chromium…

The Perpetual Calendar, a real challenge.

The Perpetual Calendar, a real challenge.

The Swiss Watch-making industry has an incredible concentration of creative minds. From the hands of a watch-maker, you might see true wonders bursting into the world. And probably the highest wonder of all is the Perpetual calendar complication. Thank you Romans Displaying the date for a watch does not seem a big deal. But displaying it correctly represents a true challenge. Why? Well because some month have 30 days and others 31. February is a mess. In some years, called leap or bissextile years, it has 29 days and in others common years only 28. Why such a sophisticated organization? Most are purely political and others religious. We should be “thankful”to the Ancient Romans for our modern calendar. At that time, the annual calendar had only 10 month equally with 30 days (precisely 29.530589 days in average) as it was following a Lunar calendar. We can see the Roman influence…

Top 5 Dive watches you need for this summer

Top 5 Dive watches you need for this summer

There are situations like when you dive in the ocean where you need a reliable watch. Your life might depend on it. Discover our selection of best Dive watches. You might need one of these soon. A Dive watch is a perfect companion for adventure When you own a watch, it becomes your best companion at all moments. Sometimes the watch is there during a hard day work in which every second counts. Or during an adventure while diving in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. And if you chose well, it can be the same watch. The first timepieces used underwater were counted in the 17th century already. Divers would find a way to protect their pocket watches in ways that imagination would be challenged. In the 19th century, several “Explorer watches” were made. All represented full customized watches for the specific needs of their owner. Early in the…

1 of 3
123