The Swiss watch industry’s newest and most significant annual trade show, Watches and Wonders, returned to Geneva in April with a notable expansion in its public programming compared to previous years. This event, soon to be a pillar of the watchmaking industry, continues to provide a platform for brands to showcase their latest innovations and trends, now with a broader reach and appeal. 

Watches and Wonders, Rolex, Luxury accessories, Vancouver, Canada, Helen Siwak, portfolio, yvr

The annual trade show is a highly exclusive event and is the largest gathering for the Swiss watchmaking industry. It eagerly offers a unique occasion for renowned brands to unveil their significant new collections and timepieces. 

This year’s event saw a diverse range of over 49,000 unique visitors throughout the week, a 14% increase from 2023. This included 5,700 retailers and 1,500 journalists, all converging to explore the new introductions from the watchmaking brands exhibiting across two levels this year. 

#watchesandwonders2024 shot to the top of social networks, with an estimated reach of over 600 million people at closing time. The arrival of several celebrities set social media ablaze. Among them were the supermodel Gisele Bündchen, the tennis champion Coco Gauff, and soccer superstar Kylian Mbappé

Watches and Wonders, Rolex, Luxury accessories, Vancouver, Canada, Helen Siwak, portfolio, yvr


As part of the public programme, a brand new LAB was inaugurated at Geneva’s Palexpo. This LAB, a hub of innovation and creativity, served as a platform where schools, start-ups, and exhibiting brands presented their visionary ideas for tomorrow’s watchmaking world. Students from the Swiss art and design school ECAL presented more than a dozen groundbreaking projects for the occasion, sparking excitement about the future of watchmaking. 

The expansion of Watches and Wonders public programme marks a significant step towards inclusivity for the trade show – now in its fourth year – from an exclusive event for industry professionals to a city-wide celebration of the culture of watchmaking, welcoming all generations and watch enthusiasts. 


Over 54 brands presented new watches—or novelties, as they are called in the watch world. The tradeshow is by far the biggest event on the horological calendar, and its participants include A. Lange & Söhne, Cartier, Chanel, Chopard, Grand Seiko, Hermès, Hublot, IWC, Jaeger-LeCoultre, Oris, Panerai, Patek Philippe, Piaget, Rolex, Roger Dubuis, Tag Heuer, Tudor, Vacheron Constantin, Van Cleef & Arpelsand Zenith

This year, the fair welcomed a thrilling lineup of newcomers, including Bremont, Eberhard & Co, Gerald Charles, Nomos, Norqain, and Raymond Weill. Swiss watchmaker ArtyA is also made its grand debut at the fair with the release of a new timepiece, ‘Purity Stairway to Heaven,’ which also commemorates the brand’s 15th anniversary. 

Piaget debuted the thinnest tourbillon, which clocks in at svelte 2 mm, or about the width of a nickel. Bulgari broke its record for the world’s thinnest mechanical watch (0.3 mm thinner than the Piaget), and Vacheron Constantin unveiled the most complicated watch in the world. 

Eleven years in the making, the Vacheron Constantin Berkley Grand Complication, which features 2,877 parts and 63 complications, including the first Chinese perpetual calendar, was commissioned by insurance billionaire William Berkley, who also owns the second most complicated timepiece with 57 complications

IWC has become the world’s fifth watchmaker to make a secular perpetual calendar (complicated enough to handle leap year ‘exceptions’ so it theoretically will not need setting before the year 4000). 

The colour green is still thriving, and Grand Seiko is still making beautifully textured dials inspired by random elements of Japanese landscapes, like the new Genbi Valley dial. Cartier has released some colourful Santos models. 

Watches and Wonders, Rolex, Luxury accessories, Vancouver, Canada, Helen Siwak, portfolio, yvr


For the first time, the public attended product presentations led by brands to learn about the complex mechanics behind luxury timepieces. Many watchmakers, like Italian Maison Panerai, also held exclusive events. 

Panerai is one of the pioneers advocating for a more holistic experience for watch collectors that goes beyond buying a product. The brand ran its own ‘Panerai Xperiences Program’ for buyers of its limited-edition Experience timepieces, which has seen clients train with professional sailors and US Navy Seals

Watchmakers like Swiss heritage brand Baume & Mercier went beyond traditional presentations, offering unique experiences for attendees. For instance, they held a ‘treasure hunt’ at their stand, engaging visitors in a series of tasks. The lucky winner was rewarded with a timepiece from the brand’s signature Riviera collection, adding an element of excitement and anticipation to the event. 

As for trends to look out for at this year’s show, smaller watches – with a diameter of 40 mm and under – have been increasingly popular over the past year. This reflects the growing influence of female collectors in the luxury watch market, which is predicted to continue past 2024. As a result, tinier timepieces will likely feature prominently in Watches and Wonders, marking a significant shift in the industry’s design and marketing strategies. 

In a similar vein, gender-neutral styles have also been growing in popularity, as have jewellery watches by brands like Cartier, Piaget, and Chopard. The industry shift in consumer preferences signifies a broader acceptance of diverse design aesthetics in the industry, breaking away from standard models and opening up to various design possibilities. It also reflects the industry’s efforts to cater to a broader audience and adapt to changing societal norms

Watches and Wonders, Rolex, Luxury accessories, Vancouver, Canada, Helen Siwak, portfolio, yvr


It took 3,500 steps to explore the entire Salon, but even more to realize the full experience, which included the ‘In The City’ program and new Watchmaking Village activities. 

Watches and Wonders Geneva opened its doors to an even broader audience this year, welcoming all generations while continuing to balance inclusivity and exclusivity around an industry that has become more inspiring than ever. 

The celebration of watchmaking continued with an incredible evening party in the city centre that won everyone over. Boutiques sold out late into the night, while the Lost Frequencies concert transformed Geneva’s quayside into an open-air festival for all to enjoy.

Author Profile

Helen Siwak, Luxury Lifestyle Observer
Helen Siwak, Luxury Lifestyle Observer
Helen Siwak is the founder of EcoLuxLuv Marketing & Communications Inc and publisher of Folio.YVR Luxury Lifestyle Magazine, PORTFOLIOY.YVR Business & Entrepreneurs Magazine, and digital women's lifestyle magazine She is a prolific content creator, consultant, and marketing and media strategist within the ecoluxury lifestyle niche. Post-pandemic, she has worked with many small to mid-sized plant-based/vegan brands to build their digital foundations and strategize content creation and business development. Helen is the west coast correspondent to Canada’s top-read industry magazine Retail-Insider, holds a vast freelance portfolio, and consults with many of the world’s luxury heritage brands. Always seeking new opportunities and challenges, you can email her at
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