SalonQP is once again getting ready to open its doors in London later this month (22nd – 24th of November). With a new owner at the helm and a revised format planned, it seems the iconic location – London’s Saatchi Gallery – is the only thing set to stay the same this year. Many familiar faces will be exhibiting at the event, along with a number of newcomers. Visitors will also be able to enjoy a series of immersive experiences, editorial exhibitions, live talks and exclusive evenings. Best of all, access to SalonQP is free this year. Read on for all the details, including the most up-to-date list available of confirmed brands exhibiting and how to register for your free ticket.
It’s fair to say that attendees at last year’s SalonQP found the show to be a little underwhelming compared to previous years. Isolating a single reason is difficult – arguably there were several – but the overall vibe was just off. This is certainly not something that is unique to SalonQP. Indeed, it’s been an interesting year so far for watch fairs/exhibitions around the world.
The Swatch Group sent shockwaves through the industry when it unexpectedly announced its 18 brands would not be returning to Baselworld in 2019. This was followed a few months later by the announcement that Audemars Piguet and Richard Mille would cease to exhibit at the SIHH from 2020. Several other smaller brands have since followed suit, including Maurice Lacroix and Raymond Weil. All of them have given broadly the same reason: The Fairs have not evolved with the changing tastes of consumers and the changing needs of brands.
SalonQP has always been a little different, however. Anyone who has ever attended the exhibition will tell you that it’s a lot more personal. Sure, there are still display cases and noticeable security everywhere, but you can get up close and personal with the watches and the people behind them in a way that you can’t do at the other major Fairs.
This is particularly the case with the independent brands, of which there are many exhibiting at SalonQP. Rather than taking orders from retailers or presenting product to the press, the focus is instead on celebrating the things that make high-end watches so interesting and enjoyable. You don’t need to make appointments or work for a major publication. Simple curiosity and a willingness to listen and learn are the only prerequisites here.
At the time of writing, there were 27 brands confirmed to be exhibiting at SalonQP. Many will be familiar to regular MONOCHROME readers. There is a nice mix of big names like Breguet, IWC and Breitling, as well as smaller niche brands, such as Atelier De Chronometrie and Urban Jürgensen. We must admit there are a few names on the list that even we haven’t come across before. But that is the great thing about SalonQP, the opportunity to discover new and potentially interesting brands. The full list is as follows:
- Andersen Genève
- Atelier De Chronometrie
- Birchall & Taylor
- Cyril Brivet-Naudot
- Czpaek & Cie
- David Candaux
- Emile Chouriet
- Favre Leuba
- Konstantin Chaykin
- Matthias Naeschke
- Meccaniche Orologi Milano
- Sinclair Harding
- Swchartz Etienne
- Urban Jürgensen
- Vacheron Constantin
Hearst UK has indicated though that it expects to add even more brands to the line-up in the coming weeks, so there might be a few more pleasant surprises in store.
As with previous years, there will also be a series of talks running throughout the exhibition. These range in topic from ‘How To Collect Vintage’ to an Audience with Roger Smith, arguably England’s greatest living watchmaker. While access to the exhibition is free, however, you will have to buy separate tickets to attend the talks. There’s also a VIP party on the Friday night that you can buy tickets to. All the details can be found on the official SalonQP website.
All in all, the 10th edition of SalonQP promises to be an exciting few days for UK (and European) watch lovers. Perhaps as importantly, it will offer insight into the future direction of the show and its continued viability in this ever-changing market. The exhibition will take place from the 22nd – 24th of November at the Saatchi Gallery.
To get more information and register for your free ticket: www.hearstlive.co.uk/salonqp/#tickets