Esquire (UK)

Time Well Spent

Celebratin­g the tenth SalonQP — Britain’s number one watch show

- By James Buttery Photograph­s by Natalie Martinez

Visitors to most watch shows hoping to get an on-wrist shot of their grail watch or the latest must-have often leave disappoint­ed, unable to get beyond an army of security guards or coax watches from their bulletproo­f display cases. Not so at SalonQP, where last November, 6,500 watch enthusiast­s passed through the doors of London’s Saatchi Gallery for the first time since QP magazine joined Esquire as part of the Hearst stable.

For three days, visitors to the free event were able to get hands-on with some of the finest watches in the world; not only from renowned brands such as Vacheron Constantin, Jaeger-LeCoultre, Breitling and Breguet, but also some of the most exclusive watchmakin­g ateliers such as MB&F, Akrivia and Voutilaine­n.

While the big Swiss trade shows in Basel and Geneva keep watches firmly locked in display cases, SalonQP has establishe­d itself as an unrivalled opportunit­y to put some of the world’s most sought-after timepieces on your wrist. The show even welcomed what had just been voted the best

watch of the year at the Swiss GPHG Awards, the Bovet 22 Grand Récital, a $470,000 (£365,000) tellurium-orrery watch that accurately models the positions of Earth, the moon and sun in real-time.

SalonQP has always been considered a prestigiou­s platform at which new independen­t watch brands can launch, and this year was no exception with anOrdain from Glasgow, Birchall & Taylor from Toronto, Yunik from Italy and French independen­t Cyril Brivet-Naudot all selecting the show for their debuts.

Central to the event was the SalonQP Live Stage which hosted a series of curated talks, discussion­s and presentati­ons including a sold-out live interview with famed watchmaker Roger Smith, introducti­ons to watch collecting, a review of the year’s best (and worst) releases, and a conversati­on with Red Arrows team commander, Squadron Leader Martin Pert.

And horology aficionado­s eager for more can set their watches for SalonQP returning with another equally excellent show planned for November this year.

hearstlive.co.uk/salonqp

 ??  ?? The allure of getting hands-on with timepieces such as the Vacheron Constantin Fifty-Six Tourbillon, above, saw watch connoisseu­rs, above right, flock to the Saatchi Gallery
The allure of getting hands-on with timepieces such as the Vacheron Constantin Fifty-Six Tourbillon, above, saw watch connoisseu­rs, above right, flock to the Saatchi Gallery
 ??  ?? Friday night at SalonQP was rounded off with a late-night drinks reception
Friday night at SalonQP was rounded off with a late-night drinks reception
 ??  ?? Two models from the Jaeger-LeCoultre Rendez-Vous collection, on display in the Bazaar Salon
Two models from the Jaeger-LeCoultre Rendez-Vous collection, on display in the Bazaar Salon
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 ??  ?? The informal setting for guests, above, combined with the latest standout watches — such as the MB&F HM9, left — has made SalonQP an unmissable fixture in the horologica­l calendar
The informal setting for guests, above, combined with the latest standout watches — such as the MB&F HM9, left — has made SalonQP an unmissable fixture in the horologica­l calendar
 ??  ?? Fresh from being awarded an OBE, watchmaker Roger Smith is interviewe­d at SalonQP
Fresh from being awarded an OBE, watchmaker Roger Smith is interviewe­d at SalonQP
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