Design Rules, Inhorgenta 2010

Martin Foster reviews the latest German watches at Inhorgenta Europe.

Inhorgenta Europe opened its doors in Munich for the 37th time with the latest collections from 1143 of the world’s watch and jewellery makers on display.

This was a very small decline from last years total of 1161 exhibitors but more significantly visitor numbers grew from by nearly 15 percent with 30,000 industry professionals from 84 countries in attendance.

Indeed Inhorgenta Europe is, as Messe München chairman Klaus Dittrich states, the European Union’s “biggest trade fair for watches, jewellery, pearls, gemstones and technology”.

“We are very pleased with the excellent run of this year’s fair, which even exceeded our own expectations,” he says.

“The strong increase in visitors shows clearly how attractive this exposition is for the industry… Together with the industry we will continue to consistently strengthen this position in terms of strategic goals as well as content.”

In addition, he added that one of the key trend’s highlighted at this year’s fair was the increasing demand for one-of-a-kind pieces distinguished by singular designs.

“This change in consumer behaviour has elevated design into the pivotal hub of promoting watches,” he says.

Certainly cutting-edge design was a key element in the vast majority of watches on display at the Fair – particularly in the German models reviewed on these pages.

* Aerious from Junghans – This pilots’ chronograph is designed so that the handling and operation of the pushers remains positive and identifiable even if they are wearing with gloves (as worn by all pilots when flying).

* The Kind Edition ‘Romero Britto’ from The One – These colourful watches combine ultra-modern technology and artwork by Brazilian pop artist Romero Britto.

* Carucci Padua – Featuring a classic round dial this watch also boasts 24 jewels and silvered hands with Superluminova inlays as well as a thermometer and hygrometer.

* Arctos-Elite – Made with Swiss ETA and European mechanical movements, the watch is housed in a case designed “for the most extreme demands of Special Forces, as well as for the demanding watch connoisseur.”

* The Humboldt I by Bethge & Soehne – This clear-cut chronograph combines ‘Portugese-style’ with “elaborate details and high-value components made in Germany”.

* The Boegli ‘Grand Festival’ – a mechanical watch with a built-in musical movement that plays Verdi (Aida), Mozart (The Magic Flute), Vivaldi (The 4 Seasons) and Beethoven (Für Elise).

Next year’s Inhorgenta Europe will be held from February 25 to 28.