Nope. Not talking about a couple that divorced and now need to stand side by side for an awkward family portrait at their daughter's wedding. I am talking about my reference 1655 Rolex Explorer II next to the new reference 216570 that was introduced at this year's BaselWorld watch show.
Immediately after returning home from Baselworld I had the great pleasure of being committed to a hospital for several days. As you probably know the medical professionals want you to take off jewellery and watches so the only way to find out the time was to look at a very ugly quartz wall clock.
Five days, walking around in other people's farts and having meetings galore back to back. That is pretty much the life of a watch writer during Basel World. Unless you choose to stay ALL eight days the watch fair lasts. Coming back home I feel like I just opened the Internet for the very first time. The cup is tilting with over info and horological impressions.
I'm writing this story on Wednesday evening after having experienced the start of Baselworld 2011. Any news? Well, yes, of course. The new triple complication watch by Patek Philippe is superb, the new Alpina range of sports watches is great, Zenith is offering more returns to classicism and the new Chromatic J12 by Chanel is arguably the best looking watch of 2011.
At Baselworld hundreds of watch brands will show new models and many of the producers will claim to have incorporated innovations. You'll probably know what an innovation is, but I doubt the true meaning of the word is clear to most watch companies. I mean, is it enough that something is new to call it an innovation or does it have to be useful as well?
I visited the exhausting exhibition of watches and jewellery in Basel for the first time 11 years ago. There was absolutely no hotelroom available in the city; you had to travel 60 miles into France to find a bent bed and dirty sheets. So I went to Zürich and I have been doing that ever since. Zürich is about ten times as nice a city as Basel. It features magnificent hotels, outstanding restaurants and much better shops than Basel.
Baselworld is still several weeks away, but the efforts of the watch and jewellery brands to get press coverage start sooner every year. We now have press information on appr. 60 new watches that will be presented at Baselworld. A couple of years ago the bombardment started on the official press day, but emails with URGENT! SENSATIONAL NEW WATCH! now arrive as early as December.
ambassador Auction Audemars Piguet Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Baselworld 2011 Baselworld 2012 Baselworld 2013 Blancpain Books Breitling Bruun Rasmussen Cartier Chopard Girard Perregaux Hublot IWC IWC Big Pilot Jaeger LeCoultre Jean Claude Biver Jeremiah Case Karel Hubert Kristian Haagen Lange und Soehne Linde Werdelin Linde Werdelin SpidoLite II Michael Schumacher Nato strap Nautilus Omega Panerai Patek Philippe Piaget Rafael Nadal Richard Mille Roger Dubuis Rolex Rolex Sea Dweller Rolex Submariner SIHH 2012 SIHH 2013 Steve McQueen TAG Heuer Technical Tuesday Vacheron Constantin Zenith