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Monday, July 28, 2014

Swatch Group Brands Prepare to Bring their 2014 Watches to Market

Breguet Celebrated "Tourbillon Day" at its Fifth Avenue boutique with a cake decorated as a tourbillon. 

In June Manhattan served as a final staging area as several Swatch Group brands held previews of their Baselworld 2014 releases. Most of the watches will appear on store shelves beginning September. However, some are already on sale.

Breguet Classique Tourbillon Quantième Perpétuel 3797

Breguet had been the most creative in using this time by hosting Tourbillon Day on June 26 at its Fifth Avenue boutique. Press members and VIP clientele were treated to a cake decorated as a tourbillon movement; champagne toasts; and a display of the brand’s most important tourbillon watches, including its 2014 Baselworld releases. The company even brought in Nakis Karapatis, Breguet’s head of Research & Development, to present a lecture on the history and function of the tourbillon.

Blancpain One Minute Flying Carrousel and Moon Phase

The celebration was created just last year by the luxury watch brand to commemorate the day that the brand’s founder and namesake, Abraham-Louis Breguet, patented the tourbillon on June 26, 1801. The invention (whose name translates as “whirlwind or “whirlpool”) was intended to compensate for the errors and fluctuations in functioning due to gravity and the natural changes in a watch’s position. It is prized by watch collectors not only for its functionality but for its beauty, particularly when exposed on a dial.

Jaquet Droz Grande Seconde Paillonné Enamel

I’ll leave the argument of whether a tourbillon is a complication for another day.

Glashütte Original Senator Chronograph Panorama Date 

If all this tourbillon talk has your head spinning, wait till you read about the carrousel movement. It may look like a tourbillon and act like a tourbillon but it’s different, according to Adam Bossi, Blancpain US brand manager. He spoke at a press lunch a week before the Swatch event at the outdoor rooftop lounge of the Nomad hotel in Manhattan, where its new Baselworld novelties were presented. Like the tourbillon, the carrousel counteracts and neutralizes the effects of deceleration and acceleration of the balance wheel caused by the gravitational pull of the Earth. However, while a tourbillon consists of a rotating carriage; a carrousel consists of a platform on which the balance wheel and its bridge go round like a wooden horse on a merry-go-round, the reason for its name. Bossi said.

Longines Equestrian Lépine

Bossi also provided some details of the new Blancpain New York boutique, set to open at anytime now. Be prepared for some high-tech imagery and interactive displays.

Tissot T-Touch Expert Solar

In the morning of the same day that Breguet had its celebration, luxury watch brands Jaquet Droz and Glashütte Original held a joint press breakfast at Lincoln Center for the reason of presenting its Baselworld 2014 collection.

Breguet Reine De Naples Princesse 8968 Ladies

Tissot was also quite busy in June, opening a new dedicated display (also known as a “shop-in-shop”) at the Toureanu TimeMachine store at 57th and Madison Avenue. It highlights Tissot’s new advertising campaign and its Baselworld 2014 introductions, getting a head start on many other brands.

Blancpain Off-Centered Hour Ladies

However, few watch brands were busier during the month of June (and May for that matter) than Longines, which was a presence at each leg of horseracing’s “Triple Crown,” as the official timekeeper and official watch for the world’s most celebrated horseracing series. The watch brand released a number of models at Baselworld, including one commemorating other equestrian events it supports.

Longines Elegant Collection Ladies

So here’s a final look before you’ll be able to see these releases in stores around the world.

Tissot T-Touch Lady Solar

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Jaquet Droz Grande Seconde Circled Ladies 

Glashütte Original Pavonina White Gold Ladies 

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