At the Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie (SIHH) watch show in Geneva, IWC celebrated the launch of its new Pilot’s Watches collection. The Pepe Lienhard Big Band from Switzerland, a dance ensemble from England and an exciting mix of jazz and swing took around 800 guests back to the golden age of the flying pioneers. Invitees included many well-known IWC brand ambassadors and celebrities, such as actresses Rosamund Pike, Hilary Swank and Zhou Xun, actors Christoph Waltz, Scott Eastwood, Chris Evans, Dev Patel, Elyas M’Barek and Moritz Bleibtreu, Formula One racing drivers Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg and supermodels Adriana Lima and Karolína Kurková.
“Many of us have shared a fascination for aircraft and flying since our childhood years. IWC’s Pilot’s Watches bring this passion to people’s wrists and are popular with watch devotees all over the world,” says Georges Kern, CEO of IWC Schaffhausen, summing up the significance of the legendary watch family.
The Pilot’s Watches, with their characteristic dial design and technical highlights such as a soft-iron cage to protect the movement against mag¬netic fields, have held a firm place in the Schaffhausen-based manufacturer’s collection for 80 years. Accordingly, IWC and its gala guests honoured and celebrated the early days of flying and the launch of IWC’s first Pilot’s Watch in 1936.
The revue-style show entitled “Come fly with us” featured performances by international music legends like Patti Austin, Ronan Keating, Curtis Stigers, Eric Harland and Till Brönner. Together with the Pepe Lienhard Big Band, the singers interpreted classics from the era of jazz and swing. Furthermore, a troupe of 20 dancers from England, who were cast exclusively for the event, took to the stage for a choreography inspired by the 1930s. British comedy star Rob Brydon took guests through the evening, and actress Rosamund Pike was full of praise: “I enjoyed every minute. The thirties atmosphere was so creatively interpreted that I kept thinking I was on a film set,” said the IWC brand ambassador, who shot to fame as Bond girl Miranda Frost and received an Oscar® Award nomination for her performance in “Gone Girl”.
Walking the red carpet was a host of stars of the silver screen, such as double Oscar® winners Hilary Swank and Christoph Waltz, Dev Patel of “Slumdog Millionaire”, American actor and son of Clint Eastwood, Scott Eastwood, “Captain America” actor Chris Evans, German actors Elyas M’Barek and Moritz Bleibtreu, Chinese actress and singer Zhou Xun and Swiss Hollywood director Marc Forster. The guest list also included many stars from the world of sport, among them Formula One World Champion Lewis Hamilton and his teammate Nico Rosberg, and Swiss racing cyclist Fabian Cancellara. Also honouring IWC with their presence were the two supermodels and IWC brand ambassadors IWC Schaffhausen. Adriana Lima and Karolína Kurková, bestselling Brazilian author Paulo Coelho and former Supertramp musician John Helliwell.
Many brand ambassadors also paid a visit to the SIHH, where Georges Kern gave an introduction to the new Pilot’s Watches collection in person and welcomed them to the IWC booth, which also featured a romantic vintage design inspired by the thirties. Eye-catching features in¬cluded hangar-like corrugated steel elements, dark wood floors and walls, brown vintage leather sofas and a fire-place, together with framed photographs of pilots and old aircraft. A genuine Supermarine Spitfire, brought all the way from Manchester to Geneva exclusively for IWC, set the tone for the presentation of the new Pilot’s Watches collection.