At the inaugural high watchmaking weekend in Miami
A few weeks ago, I had the privilege of attending the first ever edition of Watches & Wonders in the Miami Design District. The four-day event, which took place over President’s Day weekend was hosted by the Fondation de la Haute Horlogerie (FHH) and the Miami Design District.
We all know that the Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie (SIHH) is the place to be to see all the new timepiece releases for the year, but unless you’re a watch industry insider, chances are you’re not going to make it to Geneva. Watches & Wonders brings all the newly unveiled novelties from SIHH to the States and puts them on display for the very first time.
There really is no better place for this than the Miami Design District, which is home to many of the biggest names in high watchmaking, including A. Lange & Söhne, Audemars Piguet, Bulgari, Cartier, Panerai, Piaget and Vacheron Constantin, among many others. Plus, Miami weather in mid-February is just about perfect. Watches and great weather? We’re there!
Watches & Wonders also coincided with a few other notable events, including the Miami Design District Concours – a car show featuring many rare, vintage and exotic vehicles – as well as the Miami Boat Show and the Miami Yacht show. An amazing lifestyle triple-threat.
It was a truly exciting – and busy – weekend. In addition to a slew of boutique visits, I loaned my wrist to my good friends at Hodinkee for a photo shoot that will appear in the sophomore issue of Hodinkee magazine. Use the slideshow above to check out some of the weekend’s flavor and scroll down for 11 of my favorite pieces on-wrist.
Ralph Lauren Automotive Skeleton
The RL Automotive Skeleton is inspired by Ralph Lauren’s award-winning 1938 Bugatti Type 57SC Atlantic Coupe. At 45mm, it’s a beast but somehow, even on my small wrist, it just fits. An absolute statement piece.
Jaeger LeCoultre Master Control Sector Dial
I personally love this watch. It hits all the right notes for me. Simple, understated, classic and timeless design and 39mm, which is under my usual 40mm threshold. I could wear this watch every day and be happy. And the price tag is quite reasonable at $5,700.
Bulgari Octo Finissimo
Here’s a great example of how seeing a watch in person and trying it on can change your opinion of a design. I’ve never quite “gotten” the Bulgari Octo having just seen photos. But trying it on for the first time, I have to say that I get it now. It’s a marvel and just really, really cool.
Cartier has been killing it recently. Last year they unveiled both the Panthère collection and then promptly followed up with the 100 year anniversary Tank Collection. This year, we see the re-introduction of another icon, the Santos. Of the several examples I saw, I loved the all-gold version the most.
Vacheron Constantin Overseas Dual Time
For me, Vacheron Constantin can do no wrong. Here, we have the brand new Overseas Dual Time. If you are thinking of a high-end and useful sports watch, I can’t recommend this one high enough.
A. Lange & Söhne Datograph Up Down
Not an SIHH release, but any time you have the opportunity to put a Datograph on your wrist, you take it.
Vacheron Constantin Historiques Triple Calendrier 1942
Another gem from Vacheron Constantin. Their Historiques collection is the way to do historical re-releases and updates. When you can stay so true to a historical design without irony, you know you’re creating the best of the best.
Panerai L’Astronomo Luminor 1950
This is not a watch I would have in my personal collection, but the wow factor is off the charts.
Piaget Altiplano Ultimate Automatic 910P
There just something super cool about Piaget. This watch takes the iconic Altiplano up a notch.
IWC Tribute to Pallweber Edition “150 Years”
One of the coolest new designs I saw and very different than everything else in the IWC collection, which makes it a total standout.
Swatch Sistem51 HODINKEE Vintage 84
Yes, it’s still cool to wear a Swatch.
Thanks for reading.
He Spoke Style