Monthly Archives: March 2016

CHOPARD – Happy Diamonds

Chopard – Happy Diamonds

The idea behind Happy Diamonds came during a woodland walk: a fun-filled and lively way to tell the time with diamonds dancing on a watch dial. Chopard unveiled the first model (a men’s watch with a cushion-shape gold case and black dial) from a collection which would become iconic in 1976. 40 years later and the Geneva-based family business has given the piece a new twist for ladies.

Chopard has freshened up the cushion-shape case with white gold (36x36mm) and a veil of claw-set diamonds. The dazzling rim frames a white mother-of-pearl dial where 15 loose diamonds perform, the famous Happy Diamonds. The claw-set gems spin around a central paved ring with small spear-shape hands.

The hours and minutes are brought to life by a quartz movement.

Price: 48,500 CHF

By Sharmila Bertin

MIDO – Baroncelli Heritage

Mido – Baroncelli Heritage

The Spanish verb medir means “to measure” and, once conjugated in the first person singular, forms yo mido (I measure). How fitting for a watch brand whose main function is…to measure time! Mido was founded in 1918 by watchmaker Gorges Schaeren and 40 years ago it launched a classic collection with a very exotic name: Baroncelli, joined by the Baroncelli Heritage in 2016.
The steel or PVD-coated rose gold case comes in two sizes (33mm or 39mm) with a smooth gadroon-shape bezel. It houses the self-winding ETA-based Mido 1192 calibre which provides a 42-hour power reserve and fuels the time and date functions.

The delicately grained ivory dial bears three hands: two gold dauphine-shape hour and minute hands and a blue seconds hand. The date appears in a display at 3.

Price: 990 CHF (steel) – 1,090 CHF (rose gold PVD)

By Sharmila Bertin

JUNGHANS – Meister Driver Handaufzug

Junghans – Meister Driver Handaufzug

The late 19th century was a milestone in the automobile industry with inventions by German engineers such as Gottlieb Daimler (1834-1900) and Wilhelm Maybach (1846-1929) who were close to Arthur Junghans, the son of the eponymous watch brand founder and car collector.

The love for these revolutionary vehicles, especially 1930s cars, bursts from the Meister Driver Handaufzug watches. Both dials feature a blend of classic colours from the period with a mixture of anthracite, silver and vanilla beige. Each two-tone lacquered dial has a different display: the white minute track takes centre stage on one whilst the other showcases the ivory hours.

The time functions (hours and minutes in the centre, small seconds at 6) are fuelled by the manual wind J 815.1 calibre inside the 37.7mm steel case.

Price: 1170 CHF

By Sharmila Bertin

TUDOR – Heritage Black Bay Bronze

Tudor – Heritage Black Bay Bronze

Bronze is a glossy blend of copper and metals (aluminium, tin, lead) that’s stronger and heavier than steel. Unlike other iron materials, seawater hardly affects it and rust gives it a beautiful green-grey patina. Bronze has fascinated mankind since the dawn of time and we’ve used it a million ways from prehistoric tools to 21st century watch cases, just like the new Heritage Black Bay Bronze by Tudor.

Its 43mm bronze case is slightly larger than its Heritage Black Bay brothers and has the self-winding in-house MT5601 calibre which provides a 70-hour power reserve and is COSC-certified.

Its slightly domed milk chocolate dial features luminescent bronze bevelled indices and Arabic numerals with a bronze minute track. The hours, minutes and seconds are tracked by phosphorescent gold hands.

Price: 3,800 CHF

By Sharmila Bertin

ZENITH – Elite 6150

Zenith – Elite 6150

At last year’s Baselworld, Le Locle brand Zenith used the name of one of its calibres from 1994 for a new model: Elite 6150. Fans of classic timepieces fell head over heels for the super-slim and super-smart steel watch with a silver dial. A second model is now available in steel or rose gold. Elite Chronograph Classic is the latest addition to the new collection and the brand is pushing its vision forward this year with a “precious” version of the Elite 6150.

Its super-slim gold 42mm case glows with warm coppery accents. The watch has the signature self-winding Elite 6150 calibre which brings the time functions and 100-hour power reserve to life.

The dial bears slender gold indices which softly unfurl on the black minute track. A pair of leaf-shape hour and minute hands burst from the silver disc alongside a slim central seconds hand.

Price: 12,900 CHF

By Sharmila Bertin

CHOPARD – L.U.C Perpetual Chrono

Chopard – L.U.C Perpetual Chrono

We’ve been used to Chopard’s super-sophisticated L.U.C. collection for a while. This model is a step above. The technical, quality and ethical features put the L.U.C Perpetual Chrono in a class of its own.

Let’s start with technique. The piece is fuelled by the 03.10-L calibre and brings together two top complications: the perpetual calendar and chronograph. What makes things even more exciting is that there are two types of measurement: long time with the first and short time with the second. On top of that, the displays occupy the same spaces. The minute counter at 3 features the months and leap years whilst the hour counter at 9 displays the days and day/night indicator.

As for quality, the watch has the Geneva Seal and is COSC-certified. Last but by no means least, the ethical white gold 45mm case is “Fairmined” guaranteed. Limited edition (20 available).

Price: 85,000 CHF

Par Fabrice Eschmann

TISSOT – T-Touch Expert Solar NBA Edition spéciale

Tissot – T-Touch Expert Solar NBA Special Edition

You’d be wrong to think that the king of slam dunk is a big orange ball that bounces away on the maple hardwood court; instead it’s a racy watch with an athletic core that encapsulates the partnership between Le Locle watchmaker Tissot and North American basketball giant, the NBA.

Its 45mm solid titanium case is coated in rose gold PVD, houses a quartz movement and is brought to life by the light filtering through the dial. The digital display at the bottom of the black carbon dial features the different functions (20 in total) that you can preselect by pressing the touchscreen glass. Back-lighting, double time zone, complete perpetual calendar, altimeter, chronograph (with additional and split times), compass, dual alarm and more.

The T-Touch Expert Solar NBA Special Edition is an undeniably versatile piece of kit both on the court and in the city at your fingertips.

Price: 1,125 CHF

Par Sharmila Bertin

A. LANGE SÖHNE – Datograph Perpetual Tourbillon

Lange & Söhne – Datograph Perpetual Tourbillon

Lange & Söhne unveiled the Datograph Perpetual model, a fabulous piece pairing a flyback chronograph with a perpetual calendar on a grey dial, to the press and clients at the 2015 SIHH. The Saxony brand has gone one step further for 2016 by creating a more all-round version of the model: Datograph Perpetual Tourbillon.

The more all-round and more complex Datograph Perpetual Tourbillon has a manual wind L952.2 calibre in its 41.5mm platinum case. The movement fuels the 50-hour power reserve and myriad functions on the black solid silver dial tracked by luminescent gold hands: hours and minutes in the centre, large date at 12, linear power reserve indicator at 9, moon phase and dual counter displaying jumping minutes, day of the week, month, leap year and day/night indicator.

Just 100 of this limited edition timekeeping masterpiece are available.

Price: 295,000 €

By Sharmila Bertin

MONTBLANC – Heritage Chronométrie Twincounter Date

MONTBLANC – Heritage Chronométrie Twincounter Date

Unveiled at the 2016 SIHH, the Heritage Chronométrie Twincounter Date is based on the twin-counter chronographs designed in the 1950s by Minerva, the famous manufacturer founded in Villeret in 1858 and taken over by Montblanc in 2007.

A slim bezel runs around the silver white sunray dial displaying two perfectly central secondary dials with azure hearts or rims and small blue hands. The small seconds count down at 9 whilst the date and hand appear at 3. They straddle gold leaf-shape hour and minute hands which glide over a rose gold hour rim with facetted markers, two Arabic numerals (6 and 12) and a black minute track.

The functions are fuelled by the MB24.23 calibre in the 40mm steel case that’s 9.85mm thick.

Price: 2,850 €

By Sharmila Bertin

BVLGARI – Octo Ultranero Solotempo

Bvlgari – Octo Ultranero Solotempo

93 years after its foundation in Rome, Bvlgari began its watchmaking adventure in 1977 and is still going strong. Its Roman roots go into the patterns and architecture that are intrinsic to its designs as we can see on the Octo Ultranero Solotempo’s case.

The 41mm case is edgy to say the least. It’s carved out of steel, coated in black DLC and topped by an equally edgy bezel in the same material or rose gold. Its black lacquer dial bears slender hour markers and two Arabic numerals (6 and 12) in rose gold. The hours and minutes are tracked by two dauphine-shape openwork hands in the centre whilst a slim central seconds hand ticks down the seconds. The subtle white-on-black date display lies at 3.

The functions are fuelled by the self-winding BVL 193 calibre with a 50-hour power reserve.

Price: 7,950 CHF (black bezel) – 10,500 CHF (rose gold bezel)

By Sharmila Bertin