Watchmaking challenge: A Swiss watch assembled at 30,000 ft of altitude between Geneva and New York




Geneva, October 19th 2023 - A watch was assembled for the first time at an altitude of over 30,000 ft, thanks to a unique collaboration between Geneva Tourism and Swiss International Air Lines (SWISS). On board the flight that connected Geneva to New York on October 18th, representatives from both entities, along with a master watchmaker from Geneva, worked at a specially arranged workstation in the business class to assemble a watch during the journey between the two cities. This exceptional timepiece will be showcased from October 18th to 22nd during the New York leg of the Grand Prix d'Horlogerie de Genève which will be hosted at the Watches of Switzerland boutique in Soho.

Highlighting swiss quality and reliability
A groundbreaking collaboration between Geneva Tourism, the Grand Prix d'Horlogerie de Genève (GPHG), and SWISS has emerged to celebrate Swiss quality and craftsmanship. At a cruising altitude of 30,000 ft, a watch was meticulously assembled during an unexpected watchmaking workshop on SWISS airline's Geneva to New York flight, showcasing the precision, craftsmanship, and watchmaking expertise of Geneva. The assembly was carried out by a flight crew member, accompanied by an independent master watchmaker. This unique and unprecedented watch will be unveiled alongside the 84 watches from the official nomination of the GPHG traveling exhibition in New York, standing as a testament to Swiss excellence. Adrien Genier, Director of Geneva Tourism and member of the GPHG Foundation Board, who was attending the flight, explained the project's genesis: "As the capital of fine watchmaking, Geneva shines the light on the entire industry worldwide. This one-of-a-kind precision endeavour allows us to take this craftsmanship on a journey." Romain Vetter, SWISS Director for Western Switzerland, added, "Assembling a watch at 30,000 ft altitude is a fusion of two sectors that represent Swiss quality and reliability. SWISS is thrilled to enable this high-flying assembly."

Swiss and international outreach: exhibitions around the world
Each year, the Grand Prix d'Horlogerie de Genève celebrates the vitality, creativity, and horological excellence by showcasing the 84 watches nominated by its Academy during an international tour before the award ceremony takes place in November in Geneva. This series of exhibitions allows a diverse and cosmopolitan audience to discover and admire the horological innovations of the year. Since 2011, the traveling exhibition has made stops in Bangkok, Beijing, Berne, Casablanca, Dubai, Geneva, Hong Kong, Kuala Lumpur, La Chaux-de-Fonds, London, Macao, Mexico City, Milan, Moscow, New Delhi, New York, Paris, Puebla, Rome, St. Petersburg, Seoul, Shanghai, Singapore, Sydney, Taipei, Venice, Vienna and Zurich.

Geneva: The vibrant capital of fine watchmaking
As the host city of GPHG, Geneva keeps horology alive throughout the year in innovative ways. Numerous watchmaking experiences are available to visitors, including themed guided tours and watch assembly workshops, allowing visitors to discover the art of watchmaking and the secrets of an age-old craftsmanship that has become the hallmark of an entire region and nation.
To learn more: https://www.geneve.com/en/whygeneva/keeping-time

After New York, the 2023 GPHG traveling exhibition will be hosted at the Musée Rath in Geneva from October 26th to November 12th, offering an extensive program of cultural mediation:


About Geneva Tourism & Conventions Foundation
The Geneva Tourism & Conventions Foundation is a private foundation, recognized as being of public utility, whose mission is to promote and sell Geneva as a destination for both leisure and business tourism. Responsible for welcoming, assisting, and providing information, the Foundation also supports and promotes tourist-related activities of interest. The resources of Geneva Tourism are primarily funded by tourist taxes and the tourism promotion tax.

Swiss International Air Lines (SWISS) is Switzerland’s largest air carrier. With one of Europe’s most advanced and carbon-efficient aircraft fleets, SWISS is a premium airline that provides direct flights from Zurich and Geneva to keep Switzerland connected with Europe and the world. Its Swiss WorldCargo division offers an extensive range of airport-to-airport airfreight services for high-value, time-critical and care-intensive consignments. As The airline of Switzerland, SWISS embodies its home country’s traditional values and is dedicated to delivering the highest product and service quality. The company has also committed to the ambitious climate goals of halving its 2019 net carbon dioxide emissions by 2030 and making its operations entirely carbon-neutral by 2050, particularly by promoting the use of sustainable aviation fuels. SWISS is part of the Lufthansa Group and is also a member of Star Alliance, the world’s biggest airline network.

About GPHG - Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève
The Grand Prix d'Horlogerie de Genève (GPHG) was created in 2001 and has been run by a public interest foundation since 2011. For more than 20 years, it has pursued its mission of showcasing the international art of watchmaking with the support of its public and private partners, notably its principal partner FGP Swiss & Alps, backed by the participation of all those involved in the industry.


Photos & Videos available: https://tinyurl.com/4ajdjfbh  

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Press Contact:

Aude Campanelli: aude.campanelli@gphg.org

Fondation Genève Tourisme & Congrès
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