Watches and Wonders

The year’s essential rendez-vous for watch lovers

Yannick Nardin
Valentin Flauraud
Summer 2023

Each year in early spring, when every second counts, the Watches and Wonders exhibition fans the flames of passion for watch lovers around the world.

Did you know that the rise of watchmaking in Geneva was largely due to the influence of reformer John Calvin? In the 16th century, watches were the only jewellery allowed under the strict religious ordinances. Since then, Geneva and the surrounding areas have never ceased producing timepieces, and now, officially under the auspices of spring, the Watches and Wonders exhibition has solidified Geneva as the heart of the watchmaking world.

For those who may not already know, Watches and Wonders follows in the footsteps of the former Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie (SIHH) — which featured Richemont group brands and leading Baselworld actors like Rolex. The event is an exceptional concentration of trend-setting brands that carry an entire industry in their wake.

The 2023 edition was a huge success, with 48 exhibitors and 43,000 visitors from 125 different countries — nearly double attendance from last year, in part thanks to a weekend that was open to the public. Here, the world’s most famous watch brands revealed their latest creations in a joyful atmosphere that reflected the favourable state of the market. Stars of the watch world also made appearances — for both business and pleasure — including Roger Federer for Rolex, Julia Roberts for Chopard, David Beckham for Tudor, Edward Chen Hao-sen for Piaget, and Ronaldinho for Rebellion.

To include the larger public in the watchmaking festivities, special events took place throughout Geneva in boutiques along the Rue de Rhône and as part of the “In the City” concept. Other headlining brands, like Bulgari, hosted events at some of Geneva’s most prestigious locations, like the Hotel des Bergues and the Hotel President Wilson. In parallel, the Geneva University of Art and Design hosted the 2nd edition of Time to Watches, which showcased 55 brands for 5,800 visitors. It was the perfect occasion to announce the launch of new prizes for innovation and design. Mark your calendars for spring 2024!