A grand finale at Starhill Gallery's Watch Award Night 2009
As published in the YTL Community website.
Kuala Lumpur, December 14, 2009
A Journey Through Time III came to a grand close yesterday, after 11-days of spectacular showcases of stunning timepieces and jewellery. Endorsed by the Ministry of Tourism Malaysia for the third consecutive year, A Journey Through Time III welcomed an even more stellar line-up of luxury watch brands and exquisite jewellery.
There was much excitement as boutique owners, watch connoisseurs, watchmakers and principles gathered in merriment to witness the Starhill Gallery Watch of the Year Awards 2009 presentation after the 11-day long showcase.
Addressing guests during the evening Dato’ Seri Dr. Ng Yen Yen thanked YTL and Starhill Gallery for their collaboration with Tourism Malaysia and for helping put Malaysia on the horological world map as the destination for Asia’s largest watch exhibition.
“This journey will put Malaysia not only as a country with beauty and nature but also a place with sophistication and luxury. Today, in our Tourist Arrivals figure, I would like to announce that we have reached 21.5 million arrivals – far exceeding the 19 million target we set in May! This is not only because of Tourism Malaysia’s efforts but it’s because of Tan Sri Francis and Starhill Gallery for helping to make Malaysia a top tourist destination,” said Ng.
Tan Sri (Dr) Francis Yeoh in his speech said, “It is my joy to celebrate this occasion in the company of our very dynamic Minister of Tourism, YB Dato’ Sri Dr Ng Yen Yen. I truly believe that your energy and your passion will take Malaysia to greater heights.”
Yeoh also applauded the watchmakers who had flown in from around the world to grace the event. “I’m touched by your passion and your attention to detail and for giving us such quality timepieces. You are al the Mozart’s and Monet’s, the Picasso’s and Michelangelo’s of the watch world,“ he continued.
Known as Asia’s first horological awards, the gala dinner paid tribute to the best of the best timepieces which were honoured in 7 Categories.
The stunning award trophies for the winners of the six categories were created by Malaysian artist, Abdul Muthalib Musa, in honour of the craftsmanship of the revered global watchmakers.
Among the judges on the panel were Tan Sri (Dr) Francis Yeoh, Dr Bernard Cheong, Dr Massimiliano Landi, Su Jia Xian and Jean-Francois Meyer.
The Starhill Gallery Active Lifestyle Watch Award was the first to be announced and the very deserving Omega was honoured with their Seamaster Ploprof 1200MM, made for a deep-sea environment.
Next, young watch connoisseur Su Jia Xian presented the Starhill Gallery Active Lifestyle Watch Award. This award went to MCT with their Sequential One. The massive complexity in design and creation in the Sequential one has made it a first in watch making history!
The Starhill Gallery Favourite Ladies' Watch Award went to the brand that has been expanding rapidly throughout Asia and has also just opened its nouveau “Art Deco” style concept boutique that is the largest stand-alone boutique in the world at Starhill Gallery.
Bedat & Co. – 384.031.600 was announced as the winner and Tiffany Cartier-Millon, Bedat & Co.’s PR director was on hand to receive the award.
The Fourth award given away during the evening was the Starhill Gallery Favourite Mens’ Watch Award. Dr. Massimiliano Landi presented the award to Guillaume Tetu from Hautlence for the HLS 08, a timepiece that is known for its futuristic and provocative design. The uniqueness of a Hautlence piece can be seen in its jumping-hours and retrograde minutes which are linked by a patented system of connecting-rods movements.
The next award given away was the Starhill Gallery Watch with Complications in Movement Award. The award is based on mechanical complexities and complication in movements which have received critical reviews. Ulysse Nardin - Moonstruck was announced the winner and Dato’ Ralph Schneider was called up to receive the award and share a little bit about his creation.
The Moonstruck, which is an astronomical wristwatch with moon phases, comes in a limited edition of 500 pieces. “This piece is 100% Swiss made, but its aesthetics were done in my home in Bangsar. You could say that this watch is very much Malaysian!” Dato Ralph exclaimed.
Tan Sri (Dr) Francis Yeoh was called upon to deliver the YTL Spirit of Classical Art Award. The award was chosen from the top 10 favourites of the panel of judges and celebrates YTL’s spirit of classical craftsmanship.
The award went to Jaeger Le Coultre for the Master Minute Repeater Venus Botticelli. The hand-enamelled dial on this exquisite timepiece is inspired by paintings of the goddess Venus and is a one of a kind creation.
The final and most celebrated award for the evening – the Tourism Malaysia Most Revered Watch Award was a timepiece that most honoured Tourism Malaysia’s celebration of Horological Art.
Minister of Tourism, Dato’ Seri Dr. Ng Yen Yen presented the award to Franc Vila for the Fva 15 Column Regulator Automatique. This is the first Franc Vila Timepiece which uses meteorite in its dial. The man himself, Franc Vila was on hand to receive the award.
A grand event like A Journey Through Time wouldn’t be complete without world-class entertainment and YTL once again delivered by flying in a Welsh classical singer Katherine Jenkins. The multiple award-winning mezzo-soprano is the most lucrative in the United Kingdom's classical recording history and has performed before the Queen of England a number of times and has even appeared on popular television shows like Strictly Come Dancing, Royal Variety Performance and The X Factor.
Speaking to reporters before the show Jenkins said, “This is my first ever show in Malaysia and I’m very grateful to Francis Yeoh for making it possible for me to be here. I love watches and jewellery so I can’t wait to go check out what they have here!”
Jenkins delivered a powerful repertoire of classical songs and hymns accompanied by the 25-piece Starhill Gallery Sinfonietta, conducted by Anthony Inglis. Guests were wowed by her performance and were awe struck by the beautiful Welsh singer. Jenkins performed songs like Hallelujah, Pie Jesu and Nessun Dorma which was a grand close to a grand evening.