Silvain PinaudSilvain Pinaud OrigineVianney HalterVianney Halter - Art deco MetropolisLudovic BallouardDie KudokesKudokeVianney Halter, David Candaux & Ludovic BallouardKari VoutilainenKonstantin ChaykinSvend AndersenMasters of horology

What’s it like at the Geneva Masters of horology 2024?

From Basel to Geneva – the new centre of watch “trade fairs”

Basel once had Baselworld. The watch event with global significance. Everything came together here, from the big brands to smaller and independent watchmakers. The whole thing took place in exhibition halls and had an official watch character.
After the end and in the search for a new type of event, splitters were created and their equal can now be found at three separate events.
One is the “Watches and Wonders”. Here you will find the big luxury brands from Vacheron Constantin to Rolex and Tudor.
Another is “time to watches” and the Masters of horology, where the independent watchmakers of the AHCI are represented.
All these events take place at the same time in Geneva for just under a week. Every spring. So Baselworld has split up and landed in Geneva. I think you can say that.
I think it’s a good thing that Baselworld still exists, so to speak, and the separation will only have positive effects from a visitor’s point of view.
Let’s hope that Geneva doesn’t also turn the price screw for exhibition space and the caravan moves on at some point.

The Masters of Horology is the grounded version of trade fairs and watch events

What you experience at the Masters of Horology is completely grounded in watchmaking heaven. And in a relaxed, personal setting. The event takes place over two floors of a former arcade shop in the centre of Geneva. On the ground floor, we meet Sebastian Näschke and other table clocks or large clocks, such as those by Miki Eleta. A small staircase leads down to the basement, where the Guild of the Wrist shows up.

There is GlouGlou beer which has to do with the family of Svend Andersen and Ludovic Ballouard stirs a fondue in a large copper kettle. Everyone present is invited, what a nice idea! The great thing about this kind of “buffet” is that you can get to know each other. The procedure: you stand along a long table set with baskets of bread and spices. Keep an eye on the fondue pot, quickly put a piece of bread on your fondue fork, perhaps a cherry schnapps…? At the end of the table is the pot with the stirring Ludovic Ballouard.
I dip the bread-laden fork into the cheese and walk round the table in a circle until I reach the pot again. Opposite me are those on their way to or away from the pot. A sushi circle, so to speak, with cheese, the dish standing and the guests turning and talking to each other. The conversations around me were so friendly, entertaining, interesting and motivating.

What’s it like at the Geneva Masters of horology 2024?

From Basel to Geneva – the new centre of watch “trade fairs”</h4

Basel once had Baselworld. The watch event with global significance. Everything came together here, from the big brands to smaller and independent watchmakers. The whole thing took place in exhibition halls and had an official watch character.
After the end and in search of a new event mode, splinters emerged and its equal can now be found at three separate events.
One is the “Watches and Wonders”. Here you will find the big luxury brands from Vacheron Constantin to Rolex and Tudor.
Another is “time to watches” and the Masters of horology, where the independent watchmakers of the AHCI are represented.
All these events take place simultaneously in Geneva, for the duration of just under a week. Every spring. So Baselworld has split up and landed in Geneva. I think that’s fair to say.
I think it’s a good thing that Baselworld still exists, so to speak, and the separation only has positive effects from a visitor perspective.
Let’s hope that Geneva doesn’t also turn the price screw for exhibition space and the caravan moves on at some point.

What’s it like there?

The audience ranges from young to old. The sentence may sound outdated, but it’s true:
Vianney Halter spent a long time talking to a boy of about 9 about technical details. The boy had large pupils and didn’t break eye contact with Vianney for a millisecond. He also spoke perfect English and French.
This conversation had a power and energy that emanated from both of them that you don’t experience every day. Everyone present agrees that a new watchmaking career must have begun that evening and that we will see the boy again in a few years’ time.
It was the boy’s decision to attend the Masters of Horology. His father just came along. 🙂
I can’t recount all the conversations, but I can summarise the evening as follows:
Beautiful. Contemplative. Funny. Enthusiastic. Great audience. Watchmakers of today and tomorrow.

You can meet the watchmakers of today in person at the Masters of Horology. And that is the difference to other trade fairs. Admittedly, it is in the nature of things that these are independents, which are not backed by corporations, but by individuals.
At the Watches and Wonders event, you are so welcome as a guest that you feel like a friend. And you are surrounded by the most high-calibre people in the industry. Nowhere else in the world is there an event like this.

Geneva or Zurich – why is he writing this now?

Geneva is so beautiful and very different from Zurich. Sure, it’s only half the size. But both cities are on the lake and in Switzerland. Violà!
For me, the difference is not just that I speak German better than French. And I’ve just realised that I’m diving into and starting to write a travel guide about Geneva? What the clock!
That’s not my core competence, so this little appetiser to the Masters of horolgy ends here.

See you next year, enchanté. I’m going there. If you want to come along, send me a note.

 

NL

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