The Unique Show: Pop-Up High Jewellery Events for Collectors

From the alpine heights of Switzerland to the shores of Lake Como in Italy, The Unique Show is blazing a trail of high jewels across Europe under the stewardship of lifelong jewellery expert and gemmologist Dalila Daffara. It exists as a series of boutique events, bringing brands and collectors together in plush surroundings to forge new connections. With its next iteration taking place in St Moritz, Switzerland, later this month, now’s the time to find out more…

As someone who travels to countless high jewellery events throughout the year, I’ve always had a soft spot for boutique shows. These small and intimate events seem to bring out the best in brands and can put them directly in the path of potential customers, VIPs, and collectors in more nuanced locations. In 2023, a new pop-up event called The Unique Show landed on my radar, and I was intrigued from the start. The organisers kicked off their new format in Lugano, Switzerland, last November and have since put four new events on the horizon in St Mortiz, Como, Monte Carlo, and Lugano. What ties all these travelling events together is the quality of both the exhibitors and the surroundings, which are carefully chosen to be attractive for visitors and accessible for brands. Although there’s a thread that ties each show together, they’re all slightly different based on the time of year, the surroundings, the exhibiting brands, and the special activities presented by Dalila Daffara, the woman behind the project.

She tells me: “What sets The Unique Show apart is its commitment to providing an intimate gala-like ambience whilst exhibiting high jewellery and collectable watches. Guests can immerse themselves in an exquisite blend of music, fashion, fine cuisine, luxury activities such as wine-tasting, and of course, the finest high jewellery and watches.”

The Unique Show participant Maison J’OR will present high jewellery, such as this Gothica necklace with kunzite and mother of pearl, at Luxury St Moritz in February 2024

Dalila started her career working for an international auction house and has since amassed 20 years of jewellery and gemmology expertise. During that time, she built a wealth of connections that eventually led her to establish D4LUX – a strategy, marketing and events business that helps brands and designers grow their global audience. Her debut event under The Unique Show banner – Luxury Lugano – was open to the public through invitation and included brands such as Autore, Gismondi, Sicis Jewels, and Alexander Laut. She predicted 300 people would attend the show, and yet 600 people filed through the doors looking for extraordinary jewellery and watches… no wonder there are four shows on the agenda for the year ahead.

We don’t have long to wait for the next event in St Mortiz, which takes place from February 23 to 25. This ‘Winter Edition’ of The Unique Show will transform the Grand Hotel des Bains Kempinski into a destination for jewellery, topped with a cocktail party for networking and socialising. So far, the exhibitor list is bursting with friends of, including Aariya Diamonds, Autore, Boite d'Or, Lydia Courteille, Scavia, La Gioia Ascona, Matthia's & Claire, Pasquini Roma, Mayiana (Geneve), Vitale Jewelry (Padova), Fratelli Piccini, Maddalena di Stefano, Sicis Jewels, Alexander Laut, Terzihan, J'Or, Lenti 1963, AVPV Jewelry, Alessi Domenico, Edox (Orologi), Bee Goddess, Gismondi 1754, David Gotlib and Cedille Paris.

The Unique Show participant SICIS will present high jewellery, such as this Sea Anemone parure set with micromosaics, diamonds and Australian pearls in white gold at Luxury St Moritz in February 2024

For our debut event in Luxury Lugano in 2023, we carefully curated a selection of 10 esteemed brands,” Dalila explains. “Building on this success, our upcoming exhibition Luxury St Mortiz will feature an expanded roster of 25 brands and designers.” She continues: “Our selection process is focused on excellence, artistic value and distinctive identity. We prioritize partnering with industry leaders who boast impeccable reputations, demonstrate unwavering trustworthiness, and consistently work with flawless materials.”

It's also important to note that The Unique Show has great connections with suppliers and partners who help everything run smoothly. For example, there’s Champagne Barons de Rothschild for the refreshments, Sotheby’s. Loomis for logistics, ARVI for wine-tasting experiences, and many more. Everyone on board is acquainted with the luxury sector in one way or another, thereby maintaining a certain standard throughout each event and helping to give visitors the best experience possible.

Autore will return to The Unique Show at Luxury St Mortiz in February 2024 following a successful show at Luxury Lugano in November 2023

The same stringent selection process applies to visitors too. Dalila explains that external guests must register via The Unique Show website and undergo a screening process. She says: “We carefully assess factors such as social media presence and the individual's impact within the luxury industry, ensuring that only the most esteemed guests receive invitations to our events. By maintaining a discerning approach to guest selection, we ensure that our events are attended by individuals who not only appreciate the finer things in life but also contribute meaningfully to the luxury landscape.”

The Unique Show participant Terzihan will showcase its high jewellery creations, such as these ruby, sapphire and diamond earrings, at Luxury St Moritz in February 2024

If you can’t make Luxury St Mortiz in February, there are more dates for your diary. Luxury Como will take place at the famous Italian lake, which is just an hour from Milan and next door to Switzerland, from May 24-26. The venue itself is a theatre with Empire-style furnishings, stucco decorations and beautiful chandeliers that will no doubt add to the ambience. I am told that this edition of The Unique Show will also feature vintage jewellery and collectable watches, in addition to high and fine jewellery from 40 brands, plus live music, an artwork gallery, a fashion show, and immersive wine-tasting sessions. Less than two weeks later, you can travel to Monte Carlo for another The Unique Show event from 7-9 June. This event will host 50 brands at the Sea Club, which overlooks the ocean, and will coincide with Top Marques, the prestigious international supercar show that attracts 25,000 people annually!

“Our foremost goal remains crafting an unforgettable experience for our guests —one that seamlessly blends luxury, sophistication, and unparalleled craftsmanship. We are committed to connecting our attendees with the crème de la crème of high jewellery and collectible watch brands and designs, facilitating meaningful interactions and lasting impressions,” Dalila Daffara, The Unique Show.

Finally, to announce the arrival of autumn, The Unique Show will return to Lugano for its second event in the town. What’s special about this destination is its Swiss-Mediterranean culture and the fact that it’s a popular holiday destination for people across the Mediterranean and northern Europe. Luxury Lugano will take place from 22-24 November, meaning it’s the ideal time to spy some early Christmas presents.

The Unique Show participant Lenti will showcase its precious jewellery creations, such as this oval-shaped pink sapphire and diamond ring in rose gold, at Luxury St Moritz in February 2024

It is no easy task to establish a new event in the high jewellery market, especially when that event travels and pops up in new towns and cities with each new season. Thanks to its solid start in Lugano last year, I can’t wait to see how The Unique Show develops as it tours Europe in 2024.

The Unique Show will take place in St Mortiz (23-25 February), Como (24-26 May), Monte Carlo (7-9 June) and Lugano (22-24 November). Find out more here:

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