Michael Jones Jeweller has just come back from Baselworld, a world-famous show where some of the most prominent names in the jewellery and watch industry present their new lines. These names include Rolex, Tag Heuer, Breitling and many more, with the event setting trends for the coming year. Below we talk about new editions of watches from some of the biggest brands.
This year we saw a lot of changes without the presence of the Swatch Group – parent to brands like Omega, Longines and Tissot. There were fewer exhibitors than previous years so there was a different look in terms of layout, but you could still feel the buzz and excitement of seeing all the latest releases from some of the biggest names in the industry.
Whether its good news or bad news for collectors, this year was definitely quieter than previous Baselworlds. The big news was the redesign of the 126710BLNR GMT Master II “Batman” blue-black bezel. Last year, the star of the show was the 126710BLRO GMT Master II “Pepsi” red-blue bezel, a watch that was highly anticipated years before its release. This year the Batman version gets the same updates as Pepsi, including the new 3285 movement and the slightly redesigned lugs, but with a Jubilee bracelet. Although not on the popular Oyster bracelet anymore, we imagine the new version will be just as popular being equally as beautiful and even gives it a slightly vintage look, which makes it more unique.
The watch we didn't predict here at Michael Jones Jeweller, was the new, sportier, bolder Yacht-Master 42. It includes an increased size, black ceramic bezel, a superb oyster flex rubber bracelet, as well as the Rolex glide lock extension system in 18ct white gold.
The most controversial watch was the introduction of a two-tone yellow Rolesor version of the Sea-Dweller under the ref.126603. People may argue the need to make a version with gold links and bezel to a dive watch, but we would argue, why not?! It looks stylish and may even be better than the steel version. If you just want a statement luxury sports watch this is a great option.
In extra news, the Datejust 31 and 36 in yellow, white and everose Rolesor have some newly refined dials with updated movements. The Day-Date 36 is presented with novel dials, such as the truly stunning decorative stone Turquoise pavé diamond dial.
Gucci presented a new line of unisex watches inspired by the skateboard scene of the 1970s. Alessandro Michele's new 'Grip' watch features a unique, distinctive design with a smart cushion case, and three dials with revolving discs revealing the hour, minute and date. The watch will be made in 35 and 38mm cases, with interchangeable straps.
We also saw the G-Timeless automatic take on a bolder design, which heavily features Gucci's signature bee motif overlaid on an onyx gemstone dial, featuring a fantastically-designed buckle with the interlocking ‘G’ design.
Tag Heuer Watches
Tag have also introduced a bronze version of the Autavia with the choice of a brown or green dial.
Tag Heuer focused on its Autavia collection this year, inspired by the Autavia watches produced in the 1960s. The recent Autavia releases have been more in keeping with the Heuer racing tradition, but the new collection is based on the traditional pilot watches. These new watches have state of the art movements and a wide range of dial and case materials throughout the range. There are five references in steel with three dial colours: blue, black, grey on a strap, plus blue and black on a bracelet. In addition to steel, Tag have introduced a bronze version with a choice of a brown or green dial, with the latter emerging as a colour trend this year in Baselworld. The Isograph on the dial relates to the carbon-composite hairspring making it more resistant to magnetism and shock; all Isograph watches are chronometer certified.
Its a really exciting new collection and something completely different from Tag Heuer and to the other brands we saw.
This year Breitling made a re-edition of the iconic Navitimer. One of the most well-known watches - if you think of Breitling and pilot watches, you think of the Navitimer. The re-issue is very accurate and faithful to the 1959 edition; it’s the exact same design as the original model, in line with the vintage theme this year. The movement is a manual wind in-house Breitling calibre with a 70-hour power reserve. It’s a lovely size for a chronograph and has a great feel to it, especially the beaded bezel, which has been beautifully finished. If you love vintage, you’ll love this watch.
The Super Ocean collection features a new range of dive watches in sizes and colours for just about everyone.
But our personal favourite was, again, a new edition to the Navitimer family in their 'Airline Editions'. The design is based on the iconic Pan American World Airways and features a red, white, and blue 'Pan Am' theme that complements its classic design. The colours really stand out and it's nice to see vibrant colours on watch dials that make it really eye-catching.
This year was the 30th anniversary of Promaster, a range of professional sport watches to cater for the Air, Land and Sea. We expect to see some great multi-functional pilot’s watches, like the new Navihawk with atomic timekeeping, and some new line extensions to the Aqualung diver, which records the depth of your dive. One of the highlights is the new racing Promaster chronograph for speed lovers with a 1/1000th chronograph, multi-function with digital and analogue display, and world time functionality.
We also saw some new ladies’ diamond pieces under Capella. This is a new collection featuring a sleek uninterrupted design with inset crown which creates a seamless case style.
Michael Jones Jeweller
We thoroughly enjoyed our time at Baselworld and look forward to the release of these products around the world. If you’re looking for a new watch, head over to our page and browse our extensive range. You can keep up to date with any new products via our dedicated watch Instagram page.
We have three showrooms across Northampton and Banbury, so feel free to pop in and see our range in person. For more information, you can call 01604 632 548 or get in touch via our online contact form.