This year, the most important watch fair in Germany – MunichTime, celebrated its ten years of existence. Around seventy brands responded to MunichTime 2017 organisers’ invitation, along with an increase in the number of visitors. We visited the fair, we talked with watchmakers and PR people and we had a look at the watches. This is our report of the fair.
The most important German watch fair takes place every autumn in Munich, Germany. The fair opened for the first time in 2007. Since then the market has changed, technology evolved but the watchmakers and collectors remained the same enthusiastic and loving people.
2017 brought around seventy brands to the middle of Bavaria, between 27th and 29th of October, just a month after Oktoberfest. We were thrilled to see not only the German brands exhibiting at the show but also big international names. However, there were some notable exceptions. The Swatch Group was not present at the fair, not even with Glashütte Original. The fair took place at the majestic Hotel Bayerischer Hof, in the heart of Munich, just a few hundred meters away from all the big brands’ boutiques from the renowned Maximilianstrasse. The free entrance made the fair accessible to a wider public.
Here are the highlights, from our humble point of view. Here we go!
An Italian soul, Swiss flesh – Officine Panerai Luminor Due
The first booth we visited was the Officine Panerai. A nice dark themed corner lightened by the cubic stands of the watches. Unfortunately, the light at the show was not proper to make outstanding photographs. We had a deeper look at the newly released Luminor Due 3 Days Titanio, which we announced here. Panerai Luminor Due PAM728 comes in a slimmed 42mm diameter classical shaped case. At only 10.5mm thickness, the watch has a wonderful wrist presence, is light, thanks to the titanium and makes a good impression. The finishes are lovely and combined with the comfortable size, makes from PAM728 an object of desire not only for the brands’ enthusiasts.
Luminor Due 3 Days Titanio is powered by the in-house P.1000. This movement was also used in the Radiomir 1940, PAM574 and Pam575. Produced in the brand’s manufacture at Neuchatel, Switzerland, the movement has double barrel design, with three days power reserve and is well decorated.
Unfortunately, we didn’t see the gold version, PAM741. We have to admit that the skeletonised version of P1000 has a certain je ne sais quoi, which makes the Luminor Due 3 Days Oro Rosso more spectacular.
A movie of the 70s consolidates a legendary star – Girard-Perregaux Laureato Black Ceramic
The next stop was by the Girard-Perregaux for a chit-chat with brand manager Axel Felmy. He presents us the new Laureato Black Ceramic. Originated in the 1970s, the design inspiration came from a Florence cathedral Santa Maria del Fiore. The watch name and consecration came with the movie “The Graduate” – Il Laureato, a huge success in Italy. At Baselworld 2017, the brand released a new modern flavour of the Laureato in a 42mm steel case. The full hands-on review is available here. The Black Ceramic comes in the same case design as the steel version but with an increased resistance to scratches, due to ceramic material properties. The pleasant choices of satin-brushed and polished surfaces are completed harmoniously by the black “Clou de Paris” patterned dial decorated with black baton applied indexes. The Laureato Black Ceramic is powered by the in-house calibre GP01800, a 54 hours power reserve movement decorated nicely by the brand’s watchmakers. The movement is revealed on the back through a smoky sapphire crystal.
With pride from Glashütte – A. Lange und Söhne
A. Lange und Söhne booth had one of the more spectacular booths of MunichTime 2017. They had, between their watch collections, present one of their master engravers doing live work on the cock bridges of the balance wheel. This type of exhibition brings the collectors close to the work of artisans and watchmakers and make the public understand better the work complexity required by these timepieces.
We had the chance to study closely the 2017’s release of blue dials: A. Lange & Söhne Lange 1, the Lange 1 Daymatic, the Saxonia, and the Saxonia Automatic. The elegant lines and excellent finishes are something normal and expected from the reputable German brand. The new blue dials are obtained through a process of galvanization of the dial, the result satisfying the wish of the blue dials’ lovers. A. Lange & Söhne has used blue before for the Lange 1 reference 101.027.
We took a look also to the beautiful A. Lange und Söhne Richard Lange Jumping Seconds, a Glashütte’s pure breed with brilliantly designed movement featuring jumping seconds with constant force escapement and zero-reset. From design to movement decorations, this timepiece is flawless.
One of the most important releases of A. Lange und Söhne and one of the most spectacular pieces of 2017 is the 1815 Rattrapante Perpetual Calendar Handwerkskunst. A. Lange & Söhne’s Handwerkskunst (literal translation is hand-made art) is the brand’s superlative collection. The collection is made to raise shivers on the spine, to leave speechless any critic. The rhetoric is one of horological perfection being translated as art. The 2017’s release has a 18K white gold case with a size of 41.9mm diameter and 15.8mm thickness. Considering the complexity of the movement inside, the case is decent in size. The execution is flawless, typical for Lange. A classic shape with crown and pushers are perfectly balanced in size and position. The wrist feel is amazing. The watch is quite heavy but considering the number and level of complication, the decorations available on every part of the watch will make anyone forget about weight. We have to admit we spent a great amount of time studying the impressive number of details. We invite you, if you have the chance, to visit a Lange Boutique and to take a look at this artwork.
When collectors opinion counts – Czapek Genéve
We then made a stop at the Czapek Genéve booth to have a word with the brand’s CEO, Xavier de Roquemaurel. He presents us the Place Vendôme Tourbillon Suspendu “Ici et Ailleurs”, the GPHG public prize winner Quai des Bergues Fleur de Lys No 33 and the marvellous dial of the Quai des Bergues Guilloché Aqua Blue with brand’s “Ricochet” guilloché finish. Xavier shared with us some of the brand’s future projects: a tobacco brown and grey dial variants for the future Quai des Bergues Guilloché. The most interesting share, from our point of view, is the future possibility to order the watch with bespoke crowns with precious stones.
The work of gods – Greubel Forsey Quadruple Tourbillon Asymmetrical
It was mandatory to stop and enjoy a technical achievement, the Greubel Forsey Quadruple Tourbillon Asymmetrical with silver dial, in platinum. In case it’s still not known, we have, here at Deployant, a deep consideration for the brand. We invite you to read our interviews with Stephen Greubel Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3, or to read one of the many reviews here.
Besides the obvious beauty of the quadruple tourbillons, the signature asymmetrical case and the lovely dial, the timepiece is regulated, before leaving the Greubel & Forsey atelier, to -1/+2 seconds per day. We just say that the COSC certification is achieved with -4/+6 seconds per day and leave the numbers to speak for themselves.
For the love of a dame – Moritz Grossmann Tefnut Beauty
We were happy to encounter again, at the Moritz Grossmann booth, the Moritz Grossmann ATUM Primavera with the fresh colours and strong appeal. We couldn’t stop from playing with the innovative Moritz Grossmann Tefnut Twist, a breath of fresh air in the world of traditional and conservatory of watchmaking. The winding system is intuitive and easy to use.
Our attention was captured by a 2017’s novelty, the Tefnut Beauty. A beautiful feminine case with only one lug system, in white gold set with 60 brilliant cut diamonds. Only the dial exceeds the beauty of the case. The dial is argenté finished, faced with a gorgeous mother of pearl piece, fitted with Roman numerals and a diamond ring set with 62 brilliant-cut yellow.
The Moritz Grossmann Tefnut Beauty is powered by the manually wound in-house calibre 102.0. The 3Hz, 48 hours power reserve movement is nicely decorated, respecting the heritage and tradition of the Glashütte maison.
MunichTime 2017 final words
MunichTime 2017 was an interesting show. From the exquisite location of the Bayerischer Hof Hotel, in the heart of Munich, to the exposé and public, MunichTime was a great place to be at the end of October. We have met and greet old and new friends. We name a few: Marco Lang from Lang & Heyne, Daniel Strom, Alexander Philipp from Tutima Glashütte and many others.
We will visit MunichTime Watch fair next year, but if you are around Munich, it worth the make a visit.