The story begins in 2004 with a father called Luc Pettavino whose late son suffered from muscular dystrophy. Pettavino had always been an active fundraiser for research into his son’s illness—a devastating myopathy that affects one in 3,000 male births—organizing events and auctions to raise money. He had some contacts in the watch industry thanks to his work at the Monaco Yacht Show and one day had the brilliant idea to create a watch-only auction called Only Watch, where all the proceeds would help further research. An astonishing 34 watch brands agreed to make a unique timepiece for the auction and H.S.H Prince Albert II of Monaco offered his support to the charity, making it a huge success.
Only Watch takes place every two years and this year marks the eighth edition of the auction with 52 brands taking part. To date, the charity has raised over CHF 40 million and that number is set to climb even higher this year thanks to the incredible offering of unique timepieces donated by the watch brands.
All the participating brands make a unique piece for the auction, making it a watch collector’s dream event as each watch is a genuine one-off.
This year’s event will take place on November 9th 2019 in Geneva’s Four Seasons Hôtel des Bergues at 2pm (UTC+1). Before the big day, the watches will make a worldwide tour for the watch-loving public to see so if they come to a city near you, it is definitely worth putting the date in your diary.
Monaco — 25 to 28 September — at the Monaco Yacht Show
Dubai — 1 to 3 October — at Christie’s in association with Seddiqi
Paris — 7 to 8 October — at Christie’s
London — 11 to 13 October — at Christie’s
New York — 16 to 17 October — at Christie’s
Tokyo — 22 to 23 October — at Christie’s
Singapore — 25 to 26 October — at Malmaison by the Hour Glass
Hong Kong — 28 to 29 October — at Christie’s
Taipei — 30 to 31 October — at Christie’s
Geneva —7 to 9 November — at Four Seasons Hôtel des Bergues
“With Only Watch, everyone creates beauty to do good, meaning in this case, supporting the work of dozens of researchers around the world, financing studies, purchasing material, creating biotech companies in the chemistry and biology sector…to bring the science to the clinic and one day maybe to find a cure. We have done a lot already and are conscious that there is still much to be done and that this initiative needs, more than ever, help and support.” Luc Pettavino.
And without further ado (drum roll, please), here are the 2019 Only Watch participants.