While scale and sheer volume are part of Baselworld’s importance and even its allure, the fair offers the opportunity to see in close detail both some historic pieces and the very latest, often extremely limited production, watches. Iconic brands even announce a new complication every once in awhile, and the watchmaking world certainly sits up and takes notice.
Harry Winston began its journey in fine watchmaking some time ago, but when they joined Swatch Group that meant the company could maintain its own design team to sustain the Harry Winston aesthetic, but participate in Swatch Group’s artisanal resources, especially the watchmaking at Blancpain. In fact, the Winston manufacture is a short distance from Vacheron Constantin, in the tranquil mountainside a few minutes drive outside Geneva. This kind of skill and knowledge, priceless in its own way, means Harry Winston timepieces are truly as great inside as they look from the outside.
A good example is the Avenue Collection, redolent of the Harry Winston Fifth Avenue boutique’s singular design, and reminiscent of Manhattan glamour and style circa 1960. There is also the Ocean Collection, in a limited edition of 300 pieces, and the innovative Z8, part of the program based on Winston’s invention of Zalium, a new composite metal. And finally, for 2014, the fifth edition of the Histoire de Tourbillon, not arriving for a few months. It is, however, already alive and ticking at Baselworld, and is a splendid example of what the house of Harry Winston is capable of these days.