Simon Hertson explores the big trends in watches for 2008
The world of luxury watches lives to an annual routine, driven by the demands of the Baselworld watch fair held every April.
So, what can visitors expect this year? As well as getting ever larger, both more complexity and simplicity are on offer. As the mechanisms get more complex, so the dials and faces simplify.
Van Cleef & Arpels is one example. Its oval-shaped Timeless watch for ladies offers stylish simplicity that combines daytime practicality with evening elegance. For men, its Midnight in Paris piece replicates the map of the Paris stars—a simple idea that to execute requires a high degree of sophisticated engineering.
German brand Lange & Söhne's highlight is the rectangular classic Cabaret Tourbillon, which for the first time includes a stop-second feature. "Tourbillons are associated with unparalleled accuracy, so it makes sense to lead on from this with a device that stops and restarts with precision," says Gaëtan Guillosson, western Europe brand manager. Meanwhile, de Grisogono is launching the world's first mechanical digital display, on its dual time zone Meccanico dG.