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From Miami to Basel – A Few Upcoming Watch Fairs

Paul Altieri

The first quarter of the year is a busy time for luxury watch brands, with a host of high profile industry exhibitions taking place. With SIHH now behind us, here are three more upcoming watch fairs happening in the next few months.

upcoming watch fairs
The Rolex booth at Baselworld 2016 (Image: Baselworld).

Watches & Wonders

upcoming watch fairs
Watches & Wonders will be returning to Miami this year and aims to be much more consumer-oriented event than the other upcoming watch fairs.
  • What: Watches & Wonders 2019
  • Where: Miami Design District, Miami, Florida
  • When: February 15-17, 2019
  • Who: 28 watch brands including A. Lange & Söhne, Audemars Piguet, Cartier, IWC, Jaeger-LeCoultre, Omega, Panerai, TAG Heuer, Tiffany & Co., Vacheron Constantin, and others.
  • Website: watchesandwonders.com

This is the second year that the Fondation de la Haute Horlogerie and the Miami Design District partner up to bring Watches & Wonders stateside. This year’s edition will see 28 of some of the world’s best watch brands taking part. Unlike SIHH and Baselworld, which are mostly geared towards press and retailers, Watches & Wonders is much more consumer friendly. Not only are watch enthusiasts encouraged to get hands-on with new releases, but the event also boasts a program of workshops, exhibitions, and panel discussions so that visitors can participate and get involved.  



upcoming watch fairs
Rather than attending one of the upcoming watch fairs, Swatch Group will be hosting their own event to showcase their various brand’s new watches.
  • What: Time to Move 2019
  • Where: Zurich, Switzerland
  • When: March 19-26, 2019
  • Who: Swatch Group Brands including Breguet, Harry Winston, Blancpain, Jaquet Droz, Glashütte Original, and Omega.

Swatch Group made major headlines last summer when it announced that it would be pulling out of Baselworld indefinitely. With 18 watch brands under its umbrella, Swatch Group was Baselworld’s biggest exhibitor, and its departure leaves a big physical void in the event’s hallowed halls – and a significant dent in the fair’s revenue. According to Reuters, Swatch Group sent out invitations a few months back to its retailer network to attend an event in Zurich in March – overlapping with Baselworld’s dates, no less. There is no further information as of yet, but perhaps more details will follow closer to the event.   



upcoming watch fairs
Among the various upcoming watch fairs, Baselworld is easily the most famous and well-known.
  • What: Baselworld 2019
  • Where: Basel, Switzerland
  • When: March 21-26, 2019
  • Who: 130 watch brands including Breitling, Bulgari, Chopard, Hublot, MB&F, Patek Philippe, Seiko, TAG Heuer, Tudor, Zenith, and others.
  • Website: baselworld.com

Although Baselworld has experienced a huge drop in exhibitors in recent years, it is still the industry’s largest fair with top brands like Rolex and Patek unveiling their new watch collections. Yet, how the 2019 edition of Baselworld turns out will be paramount to the future of the show. Baselworld’s new management team promises plenty of innovation and comfort for exhibitors, press, and visitors this year, including an updated media center and fresh F&B outlets on-site. There will also be changes in how brands can announce their novelties to the press and public using new Baselworld digital platforms. All eyes in the industry will certainly be on Baselworld 2019 to see if the storied watch fair is truly ready to modernize.

Paul Altieri