SIHH 2017: Changes at the Salon

By MyWatch

The 27th edition of the Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie, which will take place at Geneva’s Palexpo on 16 – 20 January 2017, is set to open more doors than ever before: to new exhibitors and to the public. The Salon has never had so many exhibitors; the SIHH will host an additional two Maisons as well as five artisan- creators and independent workshops in the “Carré des Horlogers”. A total of 30 brands will showcase their designs under one roof. And while the SIHH remains an industry event, the final day of the Salon will be open to the public. A first in the history of the SIHH.

SIHH 2017 is set to be a milestone edition. The Salon embarked on a transformation last year with a redesign and a new space, the “Carré des Horlogers”. This year the changes continue apace at the annual watchmaking event that heralds a new year for the industry, with two major developments. Firstly, it will host an additional two watchmaking Maisons – Girard Perregaux and Ulysse Nardin – and five artisan-creators and independent workshops in the “Carré des Horlogers”. Secondly, the SIHH will be opened to the public for the first time.

Thirty brands to exhibit in 2017
The exhibitor list has expanded from 24 to 30 brands for SIHH 2017. This ramp-up is reflected in the growing exhibition space, which expands to an unprecedented 45,000 m2 to host more names in Haute Horlogerie than ever before under one roof.
Thanks to the presence of the historic Maisons that have shaped the history and success of the Salon over the years, the SIHH established itself from the outset as the highlight of the Haute Horlogerie calendar. Some of the Maisons date back centuries, others ‘just’ decades, but all work to preserve enduring traditions of watchmaking craftsmanship at the highest level.
The SIHH opens the year for the industry and sets the tone for upcoming trends. An enviable ensemble of brands, know-how, skills and identities come together to present a wealth of designs to the connoisseurs of fine watchmaking in attendance.
The 2017 edition marks the grand return of Girard-Perregaux to the SIHH after a few years at Baselworld, and the addition of first-time exhibitor Ulysse Nardin. These two brands bring the number of historic Maisons exhibiting at the SIHH to 17.
A highlight of 2016 was the launch of the “Carré des Horlogers”, a showcase for the future of watchmaking as represented by nine artisan-creators and independent workshops.

The Fondation de la Haute Horlogerie, organiser of the SIHH, introduced the “Carré des Horlogers” with a view to spotlighting new approaches, new philosophies, and alternative ways to understand the measurement of time, with contributions from a variety of Haute Horlogerie watchmakers.

In the wake of the success of the initiative, many independent brands clamoured to exhibit at SIHH 2017. The five brands ultimately selected were Grönefeld, MCT, Ressence, RJ- Romain Jerome, and Speake-Marin. Each of these watchmakers meets the criteria for Haute Horlogerie in accordance with the definition published in the Fondation de la Haute Horlogerie’s White Paper. Their applications were submitted to the SIHH Exhibitors’ Committee which gave its stamp of approval.

Open to the public
In a revolutionary new development, the SIHH opens its doors to the public. From the time of its inception 27 years ago, the Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie by definition sought to remain a closed industry event.
Times are changing, however, and new models of distribution have triggered a shift in the approach of the Maisons. Watchmaking brands are now retailers as well as producers. In direct contact with the end client, they have become conscious of the need to get to know their clientèle better in order to hone their offerings accordingly. The first four days will still be exclusively reserved for partners, dealers, clients, press, and major collectors of the brands. Friday, the final day of the event, will be open to the public. Potential visitors seeking a sneak preview of designs by 30 exhibiting brands will need to purchase a ticket priced 70 CHF and pre-register for the event on the SIHH website.

Exhibitors: A. Lange & Söhne, Audemars Piguet, Baume & Mercier, Cartier, Girard-Perregaux, Greubel Forsey, IWC, Jaeger-LeCoultre, Montblanc, Panerai, Parmigiani, Piaget, Richard Mille, Roger Dubuis, Ulysse Nardin, Van Cleef & Arpels, Vacheron Constantin.

The “Carré des Horlogers” : Christophe Claret, Grönefeld, H. Moser & Cie, Hautlence, HYT, Kari Voutilainen, Laurent Ferrier, MB&F, MCT-Manufacture Contemporaine du Temps, Ressence, RJ-Romain Jerome, Speake Marin, Urwerk.