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Brussels Expo 2018: Saving the best for last!

Brussels Expo 2018: Saving the best for last!

Its movements are from the most remarkable ones used in the industry.
Its collection fits into everyone’s wardrobe.
Welcome to Zenith. A brand that has been around since 1865 and probably won more awards than anyone else in the industry. Zenith has over 2300 awards , over 300 patents designed movements for about 600 different versions with innovative designs like the gravity control gyroscopic module.
But the future of tradition has arrived. The new Defy collection. This timepiece which is currently only available or actually not available anymore in limited edition is probably the worlds most accurate mechanical watch. It takes the El Primero and the Zenith Gracity control to a new challenge and to a whole new level.
Though the new design for the El Primero classic will be a hit, especially since this year Zenith will be celebrating 50 years for this iconic contribution to the watch industry, I believe that the Defy zero G and the like will be a huge hit at the Basel 2019 show. This Zenith Defy was the last watch I expected to see today and was worth the trip and the day just to get a this on my wrist.

Next year I assume with some (hopefully minute) changes, the Defy will be more available at larger but still limited quantities and the price will also be a drastic change (for the better!). So I would definitely not hesitate and get that ticket on their waitinglist before Basel 2019.

Just my two kopeks.

Oh and yes, for those that know me…there is no date on this baby, I will just call it pain for beauty but indeed…against my principles. Thanks for noticing 😊

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Brussels Expo 2018 – passion for watches

And then after your neck hurting from trying not to miss anything left right and center, you come across this interesting vintage timepiece that really pulls you like a magnet to want to see more of it.
Welcome to Oris. I enjoy quite a few challenging sports and must admit that Oris can be found in a little bit of every part of me. For skydiving I opted an Oris watch, when I go diving I have an Oris companion and you can find me on the racetrack doing a few laps, well there I think I found a new partner. If Sir Frank Williams could race at the Formula 1 with Oris, I think im ready to try it too.
The retro Oris design from the Chronoris with just 39mm and its vintage strap it looks fabulous. I tried it on and its weight was a little more than expected but cushioned so nicely on my wrist.

Oris has its classy versions for the perfect night out, dinner or club as well. Their choice for women’s watches is maybe a little less, but nevertheless available and anyway, a mans watch on a woman still strikes a chord in my books.

Well done President Herzog.

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Brussels Expo 2018: Three brands I enjoyed most

Brussels Expo 2018: three brands I enjoyed most

Just a short note to pick out my three brands that I enjoyed the most at this venue.
The most impressive part to me was that managed to put together a small collection of high end top of the line drool-over-me timepieces and more so with some pieces that have not been released to our market yet.
Meaning this was really the place to be to get a first hands on, look, touch, feel and wear for some major brands.

Let me start with the most interesting one. Breitling. Interesting? Breitling? Another airplane watch? Another chrono? Another Navitimer? Well, yes and no.
Indeed there is a new Navitimer 8 automatic which come in 41 and 43mm. But there is a change, the bezel is really interesting bidirectional with a tribute to the first Pilot watch from early 20th century bringing back classis and contempory. Unfortunately not all with a in) house movement, but still a lovely new design.
My favorite new one from breitling will definitely be the Premier 2018 collection.
This too brings back an iconic Breitling from 1945 known as ref. 777 with the 12 hour chronograph recorder. Bu the new version B01 is not only stunning but the choice of colors make it really irresistible. With 42 mm of wristspace and 70 hours reserve de Marche this one will definitely hit Breitling into a class of sporty combined with class. Oh okay fine, Charlize Theron is the new ambassador (and Raquel Welch also wore a Breitling).

Now besides that these Navitimers that are pretty funky and the Premiers which I am a huge fan of, Breitling went all out this time to a point of no return. True to its campaign #squadonamission , they actually double dares with not only a contemporary design, but they even named it day-date!
This 40mm newcomer will make you look twice to call it a Breitling. With 40mm and only a 38 hour reserve de marche it still has a very (too) clean look if you go for the stainless version. The crocodile strap with a darker face actually look fuller and nicer in my opinion, but not sure if Breitling was ready for this huge leap.

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Brussels expo 2018 : Up close and personal

brussels expo

I have so much to write about but so little time. I guess most of us face such dilemmas. If only we could buy more time instead of more watches. Actually scratch that.

I compare it to those among us that for the last year have promised on numerous occasions that next week they will start their diet, go to the gym or do ten push-ups which never happened.

But just once in a while, you get that push, that moment where you say, okay, this is it. Some get it when their pants don’t close, others when they just saw this stunning gorgeous, perfectly curved…watch!! Guys, please focus! This is a watch blog!

Anyway, yes today was one of those fun days that made me decide, its time to step up to the plate and share all of the creations I got to see and stuff I got to do today.

Today I attended the Bi-yearly expo put together by , a small dedicated to about 30 high-end watch and jewelers there and while sipping your drink you got to meet the some amazing people face to face.

Hard to admit but the start-your-Sunday early concept is not really my way of spending my weekend, but this was definitely worth the exception.

Lara who was an amazing host, welcomed me a the crack of dawn (9.30am!) to meet my fellow workshop attendees at the stunning Club Van Lotharingen in Brussels.
Together we engaged on this FHH (hautehorlogerie) Academy watchmaking workshop where we tested our patience, our stability and skills in order to take apart an ETA movement (that’s easy, I’ve been breaking stuff since I’m a kid) and then to put humpty dumpty ETA back together again and get its heart ticking again.

About 3-4 hours later, we all succeeded, got our well deserved certificate and made new friends along the way. This is exactly how the watch enthusiast family just grows and remains so much fun.

What better way to celebrate this achievement then with raising a glass together and embarking on the new keen eye we now all posses to look at more tik-tocks.
Sometimes size doesn’t matter. The fact that there were ‘only’ thirty stands, did not take away from its beauty. Besides meeting awesome people and catching up with friends. There he was, standing just in front of his booth wearing and holding his very own creation was none other than the Belgian born, down to earth genius Benoit Mintiens aka
Benoit chats with everyone with passion and a great story to tell like a well oiled watch. He tells the tale of taking everything out of an ETA movement and using just the body to create his dream. Besides that, the rest is all made in Switzerland with exception of the strap. Though I personally would like to see a nicer strap and clasp for a watch of such high end but am happy and proud its Belgian. The buckle is a serious reminder of an applewatch, but I am not sure who came first.
I am the first to admit that Belgians do have better strap manufacturers. Benoit, hit me up if you need help with that, the rest of your creation you got down pat!
Harvard claims that Ressence has an innovative way of seeing time to the untrained eye which is faster than telling time on any other watch.
This seems to have partial reasoning due to the 3 dimensional architecture used. Benoit talks about this research done by Harvard and can be proud that his concept was chosen for their research.

I claim that Benoit has brought watchmaking to a new level. The various models possessing between 212 and 387 components each have this special design and as with each new model, he was able to push himself and the design forward to a new level.

Being a diver myself, I have a few watches that get to go down deep with me. However Ressence type 5 does claim to be the first mechanical watch to be perfectly readable underwater regardless of the viewing angle. I don’t know if Benoit really wants me to take it down for the test. Not because it won’t be readable, I am sure it will be, its design and domes anti reflective sapphire crystal filled with oil is perfect reason to make it legible.
But if you are so proud of being legible under water, then it should have catered more to the divers needs and marketed more as such.
We use our bezels for oxygen timing and we also don’t want to risk this little dude to get knocked around on a dive.
But all in all, it was still pretty awesome hearing all this from the creative mind himself.