Highlights of BaselWorld 2012

This year’s BaselWorld is the place to see what is new in the wide world of watches, and in 2012 both women and men have plenty to look forward to with a wide range of choices as the biggest names in the horological world will be descending on Basel with their finest timepieces yet.
Baselworld is the world’s biggest watch and jewellery show. Vast halls that stretch as far as the eye can see house a world of watch and jewellery wonders. The big brands erect entire buildings of marble, glass and even wood to showcase the new arrivals in the most opulent settings. This is also to come and buy loose stones and pearls as an entire hall is given over to an Aladdin’s treasure trove of all the sparkles, shimmers and shines.
Almost every big name in both watches and jewellery is here and to mark the tone, Rolex and Patek Philippe flank the entrance to the main hall. The Swatch Group straddles the hub of the vast hall with its brands that include Omega, Breguet, Longines, Blancpain, Rado and Tissot to name a few. The hundreds of other booths are filled with names we know such as Hublot, Chanel, Dior, Harry Winston and Chopard. In an adjacent hall are clustered jewellery brands from big names such as Mikimoto to small producers.
For those looking for a bit of added extravagance to their timekeeping you’ll see the Graff Master Graff Tourbillion with a dial incorporating 15cts of diamonds cut down from 45ct sourced diamonds, for the more discerning there is the Maurice Lacroix Lune Rétrograde, or the classic masculinity that TAG Heuer bring to each design every year, such as their latest Microgirder, that this year comes with a 1/2000th of a second timing from the new concept that TAG Heuer are proud to have at this year’s BaselWorld, beating at 7.2 million beats every hour. De Bethune are also unveiling their new Titan Hawk to celebrate their 10th anniversary and the first in their new DB27 collection.
There are countless others, such as Bremont and this year a limited edition Breitling for Bentley GMT V8 Watch. Set to be unveiled exclusively at Baselworld, Breitling’s timepiece was made to mark the launch of the Bentley Continental GT V8. With so many of the biggest icons of the horological world in one place, BaselWorld 2012 is full of many more marvels and no doubt some world first glimpses too.
Luxury Swiss watchmaker Hublot, owned by giant LVMH, unveiled at BaselWorld unique creation: a watch with a US$ 5 million set with over 1,200 diamonds weighing six stones over three carats. Designed in an Art deco style, Hublot’s latest watch is made of 1,282 diamonds, including six each weighing more than three carats. In total, over 140 carats of diamonds were mounted on a white gold bracelet. It took 14 months of work, and mobilized 12 full-time tailors and five setters.
American luxury jeweller Harry Winston presented in Basel its exquisit Premier Feather Watch collection. This dazzling combination of precious stones and premier feather artistry was on show in four different 36mm watches, all with quartz movements, cases of 18k white or rose gold set with 66 brilliant cut diamonds at 1.45ct and brilliant-cut diamond crown; the feather dials are available as silver pheasant feathers, Lady Amherst pheasant feathers, peacock feathers, or delicate ring-necked pheasant feathers. The wonder doesn’t stop there though, with each watch also having a satin strap with 18k white or rose gold buckle set with 29 brilliant-cut diamonds.
from: BaselWorld, www.thejewelleryeditor.com, AFP and Reuters