5 Things You Must Know About Baselworld12:48 pm
Each year during spring, the city of Basel in Switzerland transforms into the world’s biggest conglomerate of brands launching new collections of watches and jewellery that define the tone of the luxury sector for the year. From larger than life booths with watches that showoff the brands latest creations and techniques, to watch connoisseurs from around the world who eagerly seek the newest from each brand, Baselworld is like the Paris fashion week for watches.
Baselworld or Basel Fair is the world’s largest exhibition watch and jewellery trade show. The fair is given round-the-clock coverage by leading fashion magazines who send their watch and jewellery specialty press to spot the trends for the coming year. This year, as we dive into this dazzling world of luxury and before we start to write about our favourite watches from the new collections launched by the brands, here are the top five things you must know about Baselworld.
What is Baselworld?
Baselworld or the Basel Fair is undisputedly the most premier event that brings together global players in the watch and jewellery sector. This year Baselworld is taking place from 19th to 26th March, 2015. Being at the heart of whole industry, Baselworld spreads its message throughout the entire world, reinforcing its leadership position year after year. Brands come together to set the tone of the trends for next year.
How Big Is The Show?
Covering about 1.5 million square feet of area in several buildings and displaying more than 7,000 truckloads of material and goods weighing tens of thousands of tons, Baselworld is a exhibition that is incomparable to anything that happens in the watch world. It takes 20,000 workers six weeks to set everything up. About 1,400 brands exhibit at the show, and in 2014, more than 120,000 guests and 3,600 journalists attended.
Why is Baselworld important?
Watch and Jewellery brands showcase the best of their latest collections and launch fashion trend for the year. You can see the world’s top fashion magazines and press coming to cover the entire event and hence it boils down to being the one major watch event of the year.
Which Brands attend the show?
You get to see a plethora of luxury brands at Baselworld with major focus on Rolex, Omega, TAG Heuer, Breitling, Patek Philippe, and Breguet. Top jewelry and fashion houses with a strong presence in the world of watches such as Chopard, Harry Winston, Hermès, Bulgari, Louis Vuitton, Chanel, Gucci and Dior also show their latest creations. Some companies that supply manufacturers also exhibit. If you’re wondering why brands like Cartier, IWC, Jaeger-LeCoultre and Panerai do not display their latest launches during Baselworld, it’s because several brands from the Richemont Group have their own show in Geneva called the Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie, or SIHH which takes place at the beginning of year sometime in January.
What happens at Baselworld?
Leading buyers and retailers from all over the world meet with the brands, see the new collections and place orders for the watches they intend to retail for the year. Along with that there are press conferences for the new launches and releases which are distributed to the media. The exhibitions are open to the public as well and one can buy passes to visit the booths and view the latest watches. The show however is not for retail sales, one cannot just walk into a brand booth and buy a watch. Watches and jewellery are displayed in glass cases for the public to view, however the staff is not able to remove pieces from cases for you to look at. Members of the trade and press, with pre-arranged appointments, view individual pieces and collections in closed rooms behind tight security.
Managing Editor, The Watch Guide
Malvika Saboo is the founder and Managing Editor for The Watch Guide. Throughout her career, Malvika has worked with various products in Haute Couture and luxury companies around the world. Her interest in watches started on her first visit to the Baselworld fair as a guest blogger. In 2012 she shifted her career to a full time watch enthusiast and watch journalist, assisting people in India discover the art and craftsmanship of watches.