A spark of good news came in today with the surprise announcement of the Watches & Wonders Shanghai Exhibition to be held between September 9th to 13th, 2020. I must confess, I had to triple-check if the date indeed said 2020 — and not 2021.
You probably already know that the famed Genevan watch exhibition, SIHH (Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie) was recently renamed Watches & Wonders. What takes sharper memory is recalling how Watches & Wonders has, in fact, existed before. In 2018, we attended Watches & Wonders Miami and back in 2015 we were there on what turned out to be the last Watches & Wonders of Hong Kong. The 2016 version was cancelled stating that it will turn into a biennial event — but due to other developments, those biennial events never came. During all these years, Hong Kong has been consistently staging the Hong Kong Watch & Clock Fair that we have been visiting year after year for a special insight into the world of the Asian watch industry. Read our latest report on that here.
Given the pandemic that has terribly affected most our lives, the fate of watch fairs has followed suit and showed a hectic cycle of cancellations and announcements. Watches & Wonders Shanghai happening in 2020 indicates the gravitas the quickly rebounding Chinese luxury watch market has. The organizers — FHH, i.e. Fondation de la Haute Horlogerie — promise “five days of brand keynotes, product launches, talks, panel discussions, explanations of the latest technologies and a hands-on introduction to watchmaking.” That’s in line with the recent trend of large exhibitions becoming more experience-focused… That said, Watches & Wonders Shanghai is invitation only with “strict safety measures.”
Held at the West Bund Art Center of Shanghai between September 9 to September 13, 2020, the list of exhibiting brands at Watches & Wonders Shanghai is: A. Lange & Söhne, Baume & Mercier, Cartier, IWC Schaffhausen, Jaeger-LeCoultre, Panerai, Parmigiani Fleurier, Piaget, Purnell, Roger Dubuis, Vacheron Constantin. We look forward to being there, should travel restrictions allow us to go. You can learn more at the exhibition’s website here.