Tag Heuer, Omega and Rolex at Baselworld 2016
If you know watches it’s probably pretty safe to say that Baselworld, an international trade show for all things horology, is on your radar. For those who haven’t picked up the flashing blip yet, it’s a showcase set every spring in the old medieval city of Basel, Switzerland, where big league watch manufacturers show off their latest models and draw their brand logos in the sky. In total the event sees some 2,100 exhibitors from over 45 countries, including the most prestigious household names, as well as those that you might hear whispered on the street corner – all gathered with the express intention of introducing us to their latest breakthroughs in aesthetical technology and design.
It’s a watch shindig like no other, is what we’re saying, and so it’s no wonder there were around 94,000 avid watch enthusiasts in attendance this year. What’s even better is we’ve now got a chance to wax lyrical about the Holy Trinity: Rolex, Omega and Tag Heuer. And, which is more, we’ve got a few new magnificent models to take a look at.
Rolex were sparing nothing in terms of elegance when they revealed the latest additions to their modernist (Oyster) and Renaissance-inspired (Cellini) collections. They also announced their use of an in-house certification for all existing watch models, taking the brands already sterling reputation, as a purveyor of superlative chronometer watches, to the next level.
We posted this beauty on Social Media a few days ago and it hasn’t left our minds since. The Oyster Perpetual Cosmograph is a singular timepiece with an exact monochrome face that highlights its subdials without complicating the aesthetic.
The Rolex Genève Cellini Time was another stand-out model for us, with its effortless marriage of simplicity and functionality. The gleaming rose-gold casing, matched with the indices, hands and, of course, the crowning emblem, served to accentuate the stark white of the dial and the subtle black lettering. For us the effect was just irresistible.
Joining Rolex in the annals of watch fame, Omega launched a fascinating range of innovative watches, including six cutting-edge Master Chronometer movements, as well as an array of surprising new materials and design techniques. It seems apparent that they are brandishing their aesthetic in new and interesting ways, whilst also retaining the iconic class that has been delighting us (and James Bond) for years. The Baselworld watch fair was the perfect place for the display of these new models, the most popular of which was undoubtedly the Speedmaster Grey Side of the Moon.
The Grey Side of the Moon continues the acclaimed Moonwatch series, paying tribute to Omega’s association with the pioneers of the Space Age. Indeed, ever since an Omega graced the wrist of Buzz Aldrin, following him as he leapt after Neil Armstrong and planted his padded white boots on the lunar dust, this company has been a bold symbol of discovery. Now we’ve just been offered the next chapter in their daring adventure, with a reddish ceramic and 18ct Sedna gold casing, encircling a ‘meteorite’ dial made from actual slices of the Gibeon Meteorite that ploughed into the Namibian desert during prehistoric times.
Finally, TAG Heuer decided to show up in a big way with their wide variety of athletic and exciting designs. Attendees were rightly in awe of their newly improved Aquaracers and the long-anticipated arrival of the TAG Heuer Connected couldn’t have hurt, proving that the avant-garde company is ready for the future, although it’s still keeping its core values close at hand.
The TAG Heuer Carrera Heuer-01 saw a revival in the form of three new incarnations. Notably the Heuer-01 can now be bought with a metal bracelet of H-shaped links to suit its silvery case. The company’s signature chronograph has also been enhanced with a few new features, whilst also allowing the wearer to choose between sporty all-steel models, or, for the aspiring space traveller, a corrosion-resistant titanium option. One thing they haven’t changed though (thankfully), is the crowd-pleasing skeleton dial – a window to the watch’s intricate inner workings, including an easy-to-read date disc and distinct red column wheel.