Monthly Archives: November 2017

montblanc 1858 2017 caseback



With its resolutely retro style, bronze/orange elements and unique look, the new chronograph by Montblanc takes us back to a vintage era.

The new 1858 collection introduced at the SIHH (Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie) in January 2017 included three watches dressed in bronze, including the Montblanc 1858 Chronograph Tachymeter. Just a few weeks away from the SIHH 2018, Montblanc has unveiled a new version of the timepiece, available in a limited series of 100 pieces, with its vintage style intact, and this time equipped with an original salmon-coloured dial. The dial, together with the use of bronze, strongly underlines the watch’s vintage aesthetic.

montblanc 1858 2017 caseback

On top of the exterior design, this new timepiece is driven by the calibre MB M16.29, which is itself inspired by the calibre Minerva 17.29, originally made for pocket watches and wrist watches in the 1930s. With this hand-wound monopusher chronograph movement, the Montblanc 1858 Chronograph Tachymeter runs at a rhythm of 18,000 vibrations an hour and has a power reserve of 50 hours. Wide, luminous cathedral-style hands, along with blue hands for the chronograph and the seconds accompany the original Montblanc logo from the 1930s, with the whole design providing a vintage look to the piece, although at that period, Montblanc was not yet making watches. This timepiece, with its authentic alloy, will certainly withstand the passing of time with elegance.

Price: 28,100 CHF

By Isabelle Guignet

vacheron constantin historiques american 1921 caseback



A never-before-seen diameter; a unique piece. Vacheron Constantin has unveiled a new American 1921 that will win over any watch wearer!

The Historiques collection launched in 2005 with timepieces inspired by past models by Vacheron Constantin. The Genevan brand first unveiled the stylish 40mm cushion-shaped American 1921 in 2009. This year the timepiece is back on centre stage with brand new measurements. This is the first time it has been available with a 36.5mm case to fit everyone. The watch is true to previous versions with a diagonal time display and off-centre crown in a corner of the case at 1.30. As you’d expect from a Vacheron Constantin watch, the American 1921 bears the prestigious Geneva Seal.

vacheron constantin historiques american 1921 caseback

In order for both ladies and gentlemen to wear it, the timepiece comes with two alligator straps and a rose gold deployment clasp, one in brown to wear anytime and one in red to glam up a chic or casual outfit.

Price: €30,000

By Dan Diaconu

louis moinet memoris 200th closeup

Louis Moinet Memoris received a prize in the international Good Design Awards

Switzerland wins a Good Design Award for the first chronograph-watch in history

“Winning a Good Design Award alongside firms like Apple is recognition indeed. This prize honours the memory of Louis Moinet, thus restoring the watchmaking genius who invented the chronograph to the pantheon of universally acclaimed artists.” JMS

 Memoris has just received the distinction of winning a prize in the international Good Design Awards, one of the most highly-renowned competitions in the world. For 67 years now, the Good Design Awards have assessed the extent to which creative designs enrich the contemporary world. Some 1,000 applications were submitted by companies and independent designers in 2016, from 46 different countries.

As well as Memoris, Apple’s iPad also received an award. The design of both items surpasses the merely utilitarian; they are the stuff of dreams, adding a touch of soul, and offering a coherent aesthetic vision of what beauty is – even when the object in question is intended to serve a useful purpose.

louis moinet memoris 200th closeup

A complete redefinition of watchmaking aesthetics

The starry base of Memoris consists of a brass plate coated in a translucent blue. The stars themselves have been created using an entirely new fixed graver process. This involves attaching a specially-made lathe to a traditional rose engine (also known as a guillocheuse).

Individual stars are all fashioned to feature different angles and depths, so that each and every one captures as much light as possible. The process used is unprecedented in watchmaking – and the outstanding result gives the novel impression of stars that really are shining.

Louis Moinet has also come up with a wholly exclusive use of synthetic gemstones. Usually destined to serve as good pivots and provide proper lubrication of the movement components, gemstones have now found a new purpose elsewhere: black zircon, in a screwed setting, takes on a decorative function here – on the Memoris case horns.

For the flange and counter bridge, Ateliers Louis Moinet have used a revolutionary translucent material. Its precise makeup, produced by combining a number of composite materials and using high-temperature vacuum moulding, is a closely-guarded secret. It offers a unique advantage: it is through-coloured – and yet the same time maintains a certain degree of transparency.

Using it in translucent dark blue on the flange of the Memoris adds an exclusive sense of depth, whereas an opaque flange would have ‘locked down’ the timepiece. Thanks to this material, the counter bridge is transparent, too, ensuring the wearer can admire the night blue sky – without missing a single star.

omega aqua terra gold collection



As versatile as ever, the new Aqua Terra watches gain in clarity with an even more attractive design. So, are you ready to set off for new watchmaking horizons?

In 2002, Omega opened a new chapter in the Seamaster saga with the Aqua Terra model. Equally at ease at sea and on land, the timepieces in the collection have seen variations over time and a whole host of versions. But they all have some things in common: they are water-resistant down to 150m and have a shock protection system to guarantee the mechanism’s performance. In 2008, the dials were decorated with a “deck” or teak pattern, which became a signature of Aqua Terra. This year, following in the wake of previous models, the design has been changed, with slimmed-down cases and a more symmetrical design. The famous dial pattern now has horizontal and not vertical lines. The date counter has moved from 3 to 6 o’clock. The reference to “water-resistance” is now on the caseback, simplifying the design on the dial, which is more elegant as a result. Reading the time is also easier thanks to wide, traditional hands pointing to triangular indices.

omega aqua terra gold collection

All the watches have Omega’s Master Chronometer certification, guaranteeing the performance of the movements with the COSC seal during exposure to magnetic fields of 15,000 gauss.

Price: €5,100 (41mm with steel strap)

By Dan Diaconu

cartier double tourbillon mydterieux squelette platinium closeup



When the magic of the tourbillon and the mystery movement meet the art of skeletonising, Cartier puts high-level watchmaking majestically on display.

In 2013, Cartier introduced the Rotonde Mysterious Double Tourbillon. The strength of this exceptional piece was to enhance the mystery movement so dear to the brand by including a double tourbillon. The mechanism made to compensate for the effects of gravity seemed to be in a state of weightlessness during its double revolution. In concrete terms, the tourbillon cage turned on itself once every 60 seconds, and at the same time the sapphire discs where the cage was placed turned once every 5 minutes.

cartier double tourbillon mydterieux squelette platinium closeup

In a preview piece for the SIHH (Salon de la Haute Horlogerie in Geneva from 15 to 19 January 2018), the mechanism has been combined with another feature: skeletonising. The Rotonde Skeleton Mysterious Double Tourbillon stands out through its highly graphic openwork structure with bridges in the shape of Roman numerals in the pure stylistic tradition of Cartier. Other elements, such as the blued sword-style hands and the pearled crown topped with a cabochon, also evoke the signature features of the Parisian brand.

The calibre 9465MC and its 286 components lie behind this clearly visible architecture. The hand-wound movement provides 52 hours of power reserve. It is housed in a generous 45mm platinum case, associated with an elegant navy-blue alligator strap with a grey-gold folding clasp.

The Rotonde Skeleton Mysterious Double Tourbillon by Cartier, with the prestigious Geneva Seal, comes in a limited edition of 30 pieces.

Price on request

By Dan Diaconu

tag heuer formula 1 alec monopoly closeup



Street art has moved from the pavements to museums and wrists with the first piece by Alec Monopoly on the dial of a TAG Heuer.

Alec Andon, a.k.a. Alec Monopoly, is famous for graffiti on New York’s streets. In 2008 he made headlines with his work mocking the world of finance and depicting people from pop culture. His playground has since spread to other international cities whose walls bear his designs. The world-renowned artist always has his face covered and is now the TAG Heuer “Art Provocateur” ambassador. The first limited edition watch (200 available) from this collaboration has the features of a Formula 1 model. The self-portrait on the dial bears the artist’s signature iconography. The top hatted Monopoly Man has a scarf around his face to remain anonymous, just like the artist.

tag heuer formula 1 alec monopoly closeup

A quartz TAG Heuer movement fuels the white Super-LumiNova® hands, central seconds and graduated scale lies on the black PVD unidirectional rotating bezel. The crown and back are screwed down to increase the case’s water-resistance to depths of 200m.

The Formula 1 Alec Monopoly Special Edition comes with a black rubber strap and deployment clasp in satin-finished steel.

Price: 1,150 CHF

By Dan Diaconu

parmigiani bugatti type 390 all views



What if you could wear a car on your wrist? Parmigiani has done just that with its Bugatti Type 390, a timepiece in tribute to the Chiron

Parmigiani has been the car brand’s partner since 2004 and had ample opportunity to unveil timepieces oozing car design and mechanical engineering, just like the Bugatti Type 370 that came out at the same time as the Bugatti Veyron 16.4. This year the watch brand is launching an unusual new timepiece that won’t go unnoticed: the Bugatti Type 390 in tribute to the incredible Bugatti Chiron.

parmigiani bugatti type 390 all views

Bugatti Type 390 is a real engine on your wrist that focuses on performance, power and reliability. It reflects the Chiron’s signature looks in the engine/interior/bodywork design and a case reminiscent of the shape of the world’s most powerful and fastest car. Parmigiani has given it a cylindrical movement with a traditional time display. The hours and minutes are joined by an 80-hour power reserve and a 60-second flying tourbillon. The new in-house PF390 calibre has been patented and lies in the cylinder dominating the structure to feed information to the dial through an endless screw (cylinder containing spiral ribbing). This new watchmaking engine is no bigger than the regulator on its 60-second tourbillon that also provides the seconds: 25×37.5mm. The entire watch has a light structure with a cylindrical horizontal build.

What’s appealing about the Bugatti Type 390 is its quirky white or rose gold case (42.2×57.7mm in diameter) and its pitch black dial that contrasts with the luminescent rose gold applied markers. Parmigiani called upon Hermès for the classic and chic black alligator strap. Only 10 collectors can get their hands on this racy little number. Are you in the running?

Price: 295,000 CHF

By Isabelle Guignet

tissot everytime swissmatic movement



A chic and simple design is the main feature of the Everytime Swissmatic. A new calibre has joined the collection, beating all the competition hands down

Buying a mechanical watch is not within everyone’s reach And yet the brand from Le Locle has taken up the challenge with its Tissot Everytime Swissmatic. Part of the entry-level Everytime collection released last year, this new model marks another step towards wider accessibility for finely crafted mechanical watches with a price outdoing all the close competitors. Tissot has hit the spot.

Inside the 40mm-wide, 12mm-thick case, the Tissot Everytime Swissmatic houses a brand-new calibre, the Swissmatic, a Swiss-made automatic movement (ETA), providing almost 75 hours (three days) of power reserve. Tissot is rightly proud of this new movement, based on the remarkable Sistem51 by Swatch. It drives the hour, minute and central second functions with silvered hands providing a strong contrast with the black dial, plus the date in a window at 3 o’clock. The dance of the mechanism can be admired through the transparent caseback.

tissot everytime swissmatic movement

With its simple design, and chic and harmonious silhouette, the Tissot Everytime Swissmatic is suited to all occasions. The case is made of 316 L stainless steel, with a sapphire crystal that is tried and tested against scratching. This new timepiece is also available in rose gold with a PVD coating and is sold with a black leather strap featuring a jewelled clasp, tone-on-tone overstitching and crocodile embossing. But you can also get a stainless-steel strap or a synthetic fabric strap with a standard buckle. Tissot focuses on the simplicity of the design, it’s true, but with an elegant and timeless look.

Price: 425 CHF

By Isabelle Guignet

patek aquanaut 5168g profile



Launched in 1997, the Aquanaut has been given fresh charms to celebrate its anniversary. The result? A new look with a more modern and elegant style.

This year, Patek Philippe is celebrating the 20th anniversary of the Aquanaut collection with a new model, the 5168G. It has kept the elegant sports look, but for the occasion has been specially dressed in grey gold – a first! The silhouette is still familiar. We can find the octagonal bezel set off with satin finishes on the top and polished finishes on the sides. On this anniversary edition, the dial impresses with its gradient midnight blue colour, a distinctive sign of the Nautilus, going from a relatively light colour at the centre to a darker hue at the edges. And this is not the only reference to the older model, since the 42.2mm-wide case is also a homage to it. The size of the case is the same as the original’s, nicknamed Jumbo by collectors.

patek aquanaut 5168g profile

The Aquanaut 5168G is worn with a composite strap in a colour and checked pattern echoing the dial. The material guarantees top-level resistance to wear and tear, salt water and ultraviolet rays. The symbol of the Genevan watchmaker, an engraved Calatrava cross, embellishes the grey-gold folding clasp.

Price: €34,980

By Dan Diaconu

jaeger lecoultre hybris artistica mysterieuse closeup



Prepare to be blown away when expertise, daring and creativity set the scene for a limitless watchmaking playground!

There’s usually just one step separating architecture and art but the success of a project depends on its ability to enhance a design. Jaeger-LeCoultre has certainly pulled it off with the Hybris Artistica Mystérieuse. The first thing that blows you away when you see the timepiece is the dial’s glittering aventurine disc delicately covered by an openwork mother-of-pearl rosette. A majestic flying tourbillon appears to be the only thing alive on this incredible composition. Where have the hands gone? The Sentier manufacture’s watchmakers have really showcased their ingenuity here! The dial is actually made up of two rotating discs and the one in the centre houses the tourbillon with the position of the complication providing the hours. The second disc on the chapter ring has an understated gilded triangle tracking the minutes.

jaeger lecoultre hybris artistica mysterieuse closeup

This impressive layout is fuelled by a self-winding movement containing 441 parts. The in-house 941 calibre provides a 50-hour power reserve from inside the 42mm case. Just like the dial, delicate rose gold embroidery wraps around the semi-precious stone on its sides and lugs. The sapphire back unveils a rotor that has been openworked by hand following countless painstaking operations.

The Hybris Artistica Mystérieuse is ultra-limited edition with just 5 available. It comes with a black leather strap and rose gold deployment clasp.

Price: €384,000

By Dan Diaconu