Visiting the Omega Museum in Biel

Before we headed to the Omega Museum in Biel, I had read in internet reviews that you would spend about an hour here. I thought to myself, “Well, at least we drop Dominic at the ice rink to get ready for the hockey game with the team, and in the meantime, we’ll spend the hour before the game starts at the nearby museum.” But that was a big mistake in my planning! We’d spend a lot more time in the museum, so we liked it there, even if someone could say it was “just a watch”. In the end, we missed the first third of the game, and I was nervously hurrying my parents and the rest of the family up to be able to see at least something from the game! And I was very sorry that Dominic couldn’t be with us in the museum, because he would have liked it a lot.

Getting there

By public transport: from Biel/Bienne train station by bus lines 2, 4, 7 or 72, stop OMEGA.

By car: The Omega Museum is located at Nicolas G. Hayek Strasse 2, 2502 Biel/Bienne. There are limited parking spaces in the blue zones around the museum, which require a parking disc with a maximum stay of 1.5 hours. Additional parking spaces (paid) are about 250 meters from the Gurzelen car park on Falkenstrasse.

Opening hours and admission fees

The museum is open from Tuesday to Friday from 11 am to 6 pm, on Saturdays and Sundays from 10 am to 5 pm. It is closed on Mondays. Admission is FREE!

Museum tour

As soon as you walk through the glass revolving door to the modern building, the friendly staff will show you where the coat stand is and recommend leaving your handbags and larger bags in the lockers at the front desk. You will then be encouraged to take the elevator to the second floor, where you will see the Swatch exhibition, and then continue down the tour to the Omega exhibition.

Swatch

As soon as you get out of the elevator, the helpful staff is waiting for you to explain what you can see on this floor and recommend that you follow the colored lines on the floor so that you don’t miss the essentials. All watch models from each year are displayed on rotating panels, which you can either spin with the wheels on the sides or by sitting on the red bike and start pedaling. Fun not only for kids but also for adults (well, following with the joy of finding your first Swatch watch, then the second, and the third… 😀)

Swatch watches were born in 1983 (a perfect year to be born, right? 😉) and until now they are known not only as of the world’s thinnest watch but are also characterized by their fresh design. They are funny, cheerful, playful, but also elegant and romantic. Simply design pieces that you fall in love with.

I personally liked the special Swatch collections: Christmas, Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day, the Olympic Games or even world destinations…

And of course also devoted to Switzerland.

Swatch with its kid’s collection of Flik Flak watches does not forget even the little ones who are still learning about time.

Those who would no longer enjoy the exhibited watch can play a virtual game.

Photo credit -josr-

Omega

When you come down the stairs, you are again welcomed by the museum staff who will ask you in which language you would like to have your audio guide. These are available in English, French, German, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Russian and Mandarin Chinese. The tour begins in a small cinema room with a nine-minute film in which you will learn about the history of time. It is certainly interesting to learn how time has been measured in ancient times until the time when Omega watches began.

Then the exhibition focuses on 3 main parts: the Omega Timekeeper technology, which is an integral part of the Olympic Games, Omega’s role as a supplier of NASA and US and Russian space programs, as well as an essential accessory to Agent 007.

The Olympic games

Space program

007

James Bond fans will be very pleased with the part of the exhibition dedicated to this hero by Ian Flemming.

At the end of this part of the exhibition, there is another small cinema where a video about OMEGA history and watchmaking craft is played. Unfortunately, we have missed this to the above-mentioned time schedule, but I hope to return to the museum soon.

Summary

  • Very well organized and informative museum, which is definitely worth a visit! Expositions are well-thought through and displayed in an elegant and modern way. It presents many fascinating aspects of this important Swiss industry. The visit has left a great impression on me and I just wanted us to have more time to visit.
  • The excellent impression is certainly due to the museum staff, who is very friendly, knowledgeable and makes you feel welcome in the museum.

PS: it looks like I’m going to visit the museum with Dominik this weekend because this time its our son Patrik who has his ice hockey game in Biel 🙂

PS2: Photos marked by -josr- have been taken by my dad

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