sophisticated watchmaking encased in stylish design
Here’s a look at the watchmaking maisons who showcased at the renown watch trade show Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie (SIHH) this year from the 14th to the 17th January 2019. We’ve picked the showstoppers at the event and the next on our list is — the IWC Big Pilot’s Watch Constant-Force Tourbillon Edition “Le Petit Prince".
You can find the full series here.
A 1940s fighter pilot would have scoffed at a watch made of precious metals and sporting a high complication, but those days are long gone, and we can have fun with the pilot’s watch heritage—exemplified by the whimsical Le Petit Prince collection from IWC.
The special edition Big Pilot’s Watch Constant-Force Tourbillon Edition “Le Petit Prince" sports a large tourbillon at 9 o’clock, along with a moonphase at 1 o’clock (bearing the image of the titular Little Prince) and power reserve indicator between four and five. The generous space afforded by the 46.2mm diameter means the dial remains uncluttered, despite the complications and large numerals. The tourbillon is IWC’s patented constant-force version, which isolates the escapement from power train and re-tensions the balance spring every second, ensuring an even delivery of force.
The watch is limited to 10 pieces each in platinum or hard gold. The latter is a newly-developed alloy of red gold which IWC boasts of being harder and up to 10 times more wear-resistant (that 1940s pilot would approve, surely), and provides a wonderfully warm contrast to the lustrous blue dial.
SIHH 2019 Recap
The 29th edition of Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie (SIHH) was another record-breaking one, counting 23,000 visitors over its four days. Geneva’s Palexpo convention centre was packed not only with people, but the latest about to be unleashed on the horological world from the 35 participating brands.
There were quite a few new beginnings and surprises. Ulysse Nardin reworked the iconic Freak, and Bovet’s debut introduced the fair to its historical pocket watch heritage. Vacheron Constantin and Hermes surprised with some truly innovative watchmaking, while Panerai showcased new limited editions that come with adventurous experiences attached. On their last appearances at SIHH, both Audemars Piguet and Richard Mille unveiled new collections—the former surprising with distinct and deliberate design, while the latter with a completely unexpected candy-themed range.