The 28th edition of the Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie (SIHH) opens on Monday, welcoming more exhibiting Maisons and designed to be more transparent and connected than ever.
The 2018 edition of the Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie is meant to be different. Geneva’s elite watch fair has been rethought and redesigned for its 28th year, with a new concept that is more open and more friendly.
It’s evident that the organizers are trying their best to meet the demands of an ever-changing, and still challenging, environment. And by the looks of it, SIHH will set the standard for all other trade shows for the rest of the year.
The first new element of note is the redesigned reception area, which this year will have a more theatrical feel about it. The broadened entrance will enhance visitor flows (and also help with security).
The more significant new addition is the so-called “ SIHH Live” area, found at the heart of the Salon. It has been designed like an actual TV set, and its aim is to provide a more effective communication platform for brands.
The completely connected set will host product presentations, debates and other events - content that will be available via the show’s communication channels that can also be followed via the SIHH2018 App.
Speaking of the App, for this year it has been optimised to make the Salon as interactive as possible for visitors. The tool provides an easy way to keep up to date with events in real time, and of course it will also provide all the nitty-gritty logistical details (maps, timetables, etc.) for visitors.
To take digital connectivity to the next level, new mobile “White Box” studios have been set up in strategic locations to facilitate communication even further.
So far so good in terms of design and infrastructure. But what about content?
The SIHH is largely dedicated to presenting the year’s new launches, and this year there will be more to see than ever. Proving that watch brands are increasingly convinced of the SIHH concept, this year the fair will showcase the novelties of 35 brands – more than double the participants from three years ago.
For this year, six new prestigious Maisons join the Salon. Hermès has become the 17th historical Maison, while Armin Strom, Chronométrie Ferdinand Berthoud, DeWitt, élégante by F.P. Journe and Romain Gauthier are joining the “Carré des Horlogers” which now hosts 18 brands.
As far as the more “cultural” portion of the festivities go, two exhibitions are being staged: the first features the first ever gathering of 19 Cartier mystery clocks, and the second, entitled “The Beauty of Time”, walks visitors through some of the most impressive timekeepers since the Middle Ages.
And in an effort to reach a broader audience, once again the show will open its doors to the public on the last day, Friday January 19th (advance registration is required via www.sihh.org). The show itself kicks off at Palexpo, Geneva, Switzerland on January 15th.