MADRID - Last week, I was fortunate enough to be invited to the launch of a new watch fair in Madrid – the Salon Internacional Altar Relojeria (SIAR). Held in the lavish surroundings of the Palacete Miguel Angel, an impressive family palace in the heart of Madrid that accommodated eleven Swiss watch brands displaying the latest ultra-rare watches, as well as historical pieces from their collections.

Cartier-Mysterieuse The Cartier Mysterieuse

Each room presented brands in a distinct and atmospheric manner. We discovered Jaeger-LeCoultre in the immaculate surroundings of the wonderfully furnished library and Audemars Piguet outside in the tranquil atmosphere of the pool house. The latter presented the Tourbillon Royal Oak Concept GMT, in its titanium case with white ceramic bezel – this striking architectural masterpiece underscored the brand’s ongoing advancements in horological science.

On walking into the Cartier display we were greeted by an impressive presentation on the Cartier ID One concept watch. This one-off piece created by the boffins at Cartier has a stunning carbon crystal escapement that does not require regulation or lubrication.

I took the opportunity to ask a representative from Cartier watches for a closer look and was thrilled to be able to privately view this unique creation as well as some of their other pieces on display. I was particularly drawn to the Cartier Mysterieuse wristwatch and also the Cartier Promenade d’une Panthère, which features an inverted oscillating weight in the form of a diamond-set panther playfully prowling the dial, both of which we would love to see at auction in the future!

Joanna Lewis is a specialist in the Watch department, Sotheby’s London.