Your own Mr. Timepiece, watch enthusiast and founder of TimescapeUSA, is jetting his way to the big event. Yes, the place to be if one loves watches: Basel, Switzerland. And if you are into yodeling, chocolate and great scenic vistas, also a good place to be. I am always awestruck upon entering the exhibition hall. It is a sense akin to being clothed in the aura of horologic history and legend, that stunning first impression of timepiece nirvana. And there are thousands of adherents like myself, advancing mere feet at a time, jostling to continue their pursuit of fantasy.
Does everyone else find it uncanny how well the Europeans wear clothing? From the simple denim jeans and heels sported by the local lasses to the latest Hugo Boss or Armani suit, everyone seems a model or at least a minor titan of industry. And this European minimalism is incorporated in the horological designs of Swiss and German watchmakers, where the most basic of timepieces bestow a captivating allure upon the viewer.
In mythology Ulysses heard the unattainable tempting song of the sirens. In Basel the sirens still beckon their seekers onward with promises of beauty and mechanical wonder. But now the sirens song is within reach.
The Basel Exhibition Hall closed after Basel World 2012 for a major face lift. The exhibition hall was deconstructed, refurbished, and opened to a throng of visitors for the inaugural Basel World 2013 with a more advantageous layout for exhibit booths and accommodation of large inquisitive crowds. Although the public is welcome to view the magnificent items displayed in the windows of the brand exhibitors, they are not allowed to enter the holy of holies. That would be where the newest timepiece creations are unveiled and presented to us for inspection. This inner sanctum is located deep inside the brand exhibit and far from the eyes of the Unwashed Masses. Accessible to invited guests, authorized dealers and the media.
Not wanting to sound overly snobby, it is quite the honor to be an invited participant.
But buyer beware, this is not a free look by any means. I and the other authorized dealers will be expected to pony up a large amount of Dollars, Euro, Swiss Francs, Rubles ( not worth much anymore), Pounds or Yen prior to exiting the exhibit booth with a pro forma invoice, a logo key chain, and a 6” wooden skewer with 3 shrimp and a cherry tomato. Basel World is open to the public for a fee of 50 Swiss Francs per day or a 7 day event pass for 150 Swiss francs. Even an authorized dealers like myself is not immune to forking over the entrance fee. But it is well worth it. Our cadre of VIPs will be hard pressed to find the aforementioned hoi polloi nibbling on anything even resembling a cherry tomato.
I will be forwarding images and video from Basel.
More to follow when I return.