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US Presentation of timepiece collection


Portofino Midsize: Watches and
a Campaign that Transcend Time

Vivienne Nosti

Models and movie stars come out to celebrate the launch of IWC Schaffhausen’s new Portofino Midsize Collection.



The W Miami Beach, with its gleaming lobby and 120-foot long marble wall, recalling the glamour of the 1950’s, was the perfect backdrop for one of Art Basel’s most exciting events. Swiss luxury brand IWC Schaffhausen’s U.S. launch of its new watch collection: The Portofino Midsize Range. The cast of ambassadors for this new campaign, shot by famed photographer Peter Lindberg, is in Lindberg’s own words “a cast that only IWC can summon,” starring some of the world’s most glamorous and beautiful models and movie stars: Cate Blanchett, Ewan McGregor, Emily Blunt, Christoph Waltz, Zhou Xun, Adriana Lima and Karolina Kurkova, among many others.

IWC Portofino Midsize
Actress Emily Blunt and CEO of swiss watch manufacturer IWC Georges Kern.

The chilly and unusually windy evening near the ocean began with celebrities walking the red carpet. First on the scene was the ever- jocular host of festivities Jason Alexander. When greeted by the press and asked if he was excited to be in Miami, he joked, “I am not even sure where I am,” yet he seemed ready to host the many guests on hand to celebrate the Portofino Affair, an exhibit of approximately 60 black-and-white images shot in Portofino, Italy.

This idyllic seaside village, with a picture-perfect harbor and crystal clear turquoise water, has long been associated with glamorous stars, who in the heyday of the 1960’s, included Sofia Loren, Princess Grace of Monaco, Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor sauntering around its charming streets. Portofino provided the perfect setting for this spectacular photo shoot, featuring an extraordinary cast of women, dressed in men’s inspired tuxedos, lounging around drinking espresso and yachting, while all the while looking mysteriously alluring in an androgynous campaign that recalls some of the images of Marlene Dietrich in a tuxedo smoking a cigarette.  

IWC Portofino Midsize
(L) Adriana Lima; (R) Karolina Kurkova.

Next to join Mr. Alexander on the red carpet was the CEO of IWC, Georges Kern followed by Jason Binn, Editor In Chief of Du Jour Magazine. After a short interval, the stars began arriving to make a colorful splash. Decked out in a yellow ensemble to complement her flowing hair was Solange Knowles. Legendary sports stars Sammy Sosa, Lennox Lewis, and Martina Navratilova next captivated the crowd, followed by the debonaire X-Man star James Marsden. Then, the stars of the campaign themselves, Adriana Lima wearing an elegant black gown and Karolina Kurkova both looked stunning. Finally, award-winning actress Emily Blunt made a knockout entrance, in a gunmetal jeweled Pucci dress, accentuated with yellow flowers placed strategically along the neckline and scattered around a stunning backless drop. All three women had something insightful to say about their experience with this campaign.

”A watch is an important accessory, especially if you don’t like to wear too much jewelry,” explained Lima. “Watches reveal a lot about your personality and I am fascinated by how IWC timepieces seem to touch your soul time and again to reveal yet another facet of who you are.”

”I felt like I was transformed back in time like a Hollywood movie star being shot by a director who wasn’t only shooting fashion but timeless, raw photographs,” enthused Kurkova.  

For Blunt, “to work together with Peter Lindberg was an experience I will not forget, because his magnificent sense of beauty and attention to detail allowed us as cast members to truly transcend time and space.” When asked to name her favorite watch in the Portofino Midsize collection, she answered without hesitation “the rose gold model, it’s classic and goes with everything.”

IWC Portofino Midsize
Musician Solange Knowles performs at the IWC Schaffhausen and DuJour Magazine's Jason Binn's celebration of "Timeless Portofino" during Art Basel Miami Beach.

Once the stars had answered some of the media’s questions, they were whisked off to a private cocktail party, followed by an intimate dinner, curated by Chef Andrew Carmellini of the Dutch restaurant at the W South Beach. Inside the private dining room, where champagne and conversation flowed, you could hear Blunt, Kurkova and Lima joke about whose hair had been more wind-swept on the red carpet (which was impossibly windy that evening). The dining room was surrounded by beautifully framed images of the campaign shot by Lindberg.

Later, Ellen Barkin, David Arquette, Garance Doré, Paulina Rubio, and director Michael Bay, among others, gathered with the guests to enjoy a live musical performance by Solange at the After-Party hosted by Du Jour Magazine. The entire evening summed up the brand’s remarkable and luxurious watches with a sense of timeless elegance.

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© azureazure.com | 2014

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