RHAPSODY IN BLUE
Since 2004, the Louis Moinet workshops have been keeping alive the spirit of the 19th century watchmaker of the same name. A new limited edition combining cutting-edge watchmaking and sophisticated design is continuing the tradition.
Mogador, from a word in the Berber language, mugador, meaning “ramparts”, sounds like an invitation on a journey of discovery. Louis Moinet has named its new timepiece after the former name of the modern Moroccan city of Essaouira. The watch includes the brand’s signature technical and aesthetic features. The dial comes with a skilfully designed display enhanced by a deep blue setting to attract the play of light. The faceted shadows and lighter areas combine to create a highly graphic effect. A pair of hands in a very striking style move around a simple hour rim. At 6 o’clock, the tourbillon mechanism rotates once every minute. A 45.4mm-wide case acts like a rampart to protect the watch. This is a wide watch, but not at all heavy, since it weighs in at just 33 grams. The result is achieved by using grade 5 titanium.
By Dan Diaconu
A CELEBRATION IN OMEGA COLOURS
For the 125th anniversary of the famous Omega calibre, the Biel/Bienne-based brand has unveiled a new watch with a yellow-gold case enhanced by an Omega-red enamel dial!
125 years ago, in 1894, Louis-Paul and César, the two sons of the watchmaker Louis Brandt, launched a new calibre that was so revolutionary that they called it Omega, the last letter of the Greek alphabet and the symbol of accomplishment. For the occasion, they also renamed the watchmaking firm their father had founded in 1848. To celebrate this important step in its history, Omega has unveiled a new timepiece showing off the brand’s signature colour and capacity for innovation, both inside and out: the De Ville Trésor 125th Anniversary Edition.
The time information is managed by the calibre Omega Master Chronometer 8929, the brand’s first hand-wound movement to be given the METAS certification. This highly accurate mechanism is resistant to magnetic fields and provides a power reserve of 72 hours. It is housed in an elegant, 40mm-wide yellow-gold case, with the right size and finesse to be worn by either men or women. On the back of this precious timepiece is a special medallion made of red enamel and surrounded by a form of engraving called damaskeeing, with curls and curves that were once all the rage in the US.
The De Ville Trésor 125th Anniversary Edition is worn with an alligator-leather strap matching the dial and tone-on-tone stitching, along with a yellow-gold tang buckle.
Price: 17,800 CHF omegawatches.com
By Sharmila Bertin
True to its love for minerals and gems, the watchmakers based in La Chaux-de-Fonds have used jewel-cutting techniques to decorate one of its ladies models in a passionate red colour. An ode to love to wear on the wrist.
Pierre Jaquet-Droz (1721-1790) was captivated by the beauty of nature and the treasures to be found in it. He always turned to the natural world when decorating his watchers and other timepieces, striving to make real poems to time. His lyrical flame has been constantly kept alive by the “brand with two stars” based in La Chaux-de-Fonds in Switzerland, as is shown in the new Lady 8 Petite Ruby Heart. This version of a model launched almost one year ago by Jaquet Droz is truly an ode to love, as its release comes just a few days before Valentine’s Day.
The Lady 8 Petite Ruby Heart is powered by the calibre JD 615, an automatic movement supplying 38 hours of power reserve. The mechanism runs at 21,600 vibrations an hour and is housed in a 25mm-wide rose-gold case shaped like a number 8, delicately highlighted by a line of 68 diamonds.
This new model by Jaquet Droz is worn with an alligator leather strap matching the dial and a rose-gold folding clasp covered with 23 diamonds.
Price: 28,950 CHF jaquet-droz.com
By Sharmila Bertin
Watchmaking and cars have much in common. So when two prestigious brands work together, the aesthetic and mechanic performances are all present and correct.
Zenith began its partnership with Land Rover three years ago. The happy collaboration is based on a shared taste for design and cutting-edge technique. After the Chronomaster El Primero Range Rover Velar, launched in 2017, the brand has just released the Defy Classic Range Rover Special Edition with a limited edition of 200 pieces. Like for the first model, the stylistic features of the watch echo elements in a Range Rover car, in this case, the Evoque. So the second hand and the rotor come in turquoise blue, a colour found on the steering wheel and seats of the SUV. The architecture of the skeletoned dial evokes the sculptural design of the wheel rims. The “diamond“ pattern on the car’s padded upholstery makes an appearance on the rubber watch strap.
Price: 7,500 CHF zenith.com
By Dan Diaconu
The watch was officially introduced during the SIHH 2019, but collectors can already enjoy its exceptional attractions and a highly complex calibre.
Once again, the Les Cabinotiers collection gives Vacheron Constantin a chance to combine a mastery of luxury watchmaking and artistic craftsmanship. The phoenix, the symbol of the eternal rebeginning, is displayed on the body of the beautiful watch case. The pattern takes on life and depth through the expert use of bas-relief engraving. Almost 300 hours of work went in to producing the final result. The magnificent 47mm-wide pink-gold case houses an extremely complex hand-wound movement. The calibre 2755 comes with a power reserve of 58 hours and features 15 complications. Like the conductor of an orchestra, it guarantees the smooth running of the Grande Complication Phoenix.
Price on request vacheron-constantin.com
By Dan Diaconu
ROYALTY IN ROSE
A few weeks away from Valentine’s Day, the dial on the flagship model in Breguet’s ladies collections comes dressed in rose mother-of-pearl with delicate purple tones to celebrate the most beautiful and exciting of all emotions
Is love a feeling, an emotion, a state of mind… or all three? You probably have to have experienced it at least once in your life to try to define it. If love is present in the heart of a person, a couple of a family, then one date is especially important: 14 February, Saint Valentine’s Day. The tradition begun in English-speaking countries has now spread across the world and millions of people celebrate it. Breguet is also taking part with a new version of the Reine de Naples 8905 model made in just 28 pieces.
This collection launched in 2002 shares many of the features of the very first wrist-watch designed in 1812 by Abraham-Louis Breguet (1747-1823) for Caroline Murat (1782-1839), the sister of Napoleon (1769-1821) and Queen of Naples (Reine de Naples in French). The Saint Valentine 2019 model is oval has a fluted white-gold case and a bezel highlighted by a stream of 128 diamonds. The watch case is 28.45 x 36.50mm. The sapphire glass caseback unveils the calibre 537DRL2, an automatic movement providing 45 hours of power reserve.
The mechanism is perfect and the dial is a wonder for the eyes. The rose mother-of-pearl gives rise to dazzling rainbow effects with mauve predominating. The hour and minute hands, with two blued steel Breguet “moon” tip hands, are set at the centre of a guilloché disc. At 7 o’clock is an engraved seconds sub-dial. The upper part of the dial contains the moon phase with the queen of the night and the stars made of white gold against a bright pink disc, along with a power reserve indicator.
The Reine de Naples 8905 Saint Valentine 2019 is worn with a mauve alligator leather strap.
Price: 38’500 CHF breguet.com
By Sharmila Bertin
RECIPE OF TRADITION
After the Year of the Dog, make way for the Year of the Pig! And to get the year off to the best possible start, Chopard has released a collector’s watch with great aesthetic elegance.
On 5 February 2019, the Chinese New Year will begin under the zodiac sign of the Pig. For the occasion, Chopard has added a limited edition of 88 pieces to its L.U.C XP Urushi collection. The totally hand-made dial displays a golden pig, the symbol of plenty, luck and cheerfulness. The brand has once again called on the talents of Minori Koizumi for the new timepiece. This virtuoso of the traditional Japanese lacquerware technique works alongside the master, Kiichiro Masumura, widely recognised as the finest exponent of his art. Urushi lacquerware is made from the sap of the tree of the same name. Its honey-like consistency adds relief to the delicate picture on the dial. But that’s not all, since it also provides a rich range of colours helping to bring the composition to life. The dial has no hour markers or numerals but features dauphine-style hour and minute hands.
The L.U.C XP Urushi Year of the Pig is worn with a hand-sewn black alligator strap. The watch is only on sale in Chopard stores.
Price on request chopard.com
By Dan Diaconu
A TOUCH OF BLUE
In 2018, the Skelet-One combined ceramics and red gold. The year, the model is back with a sublime chromatic design that is both sophisticated and modern.
Last year, Jaquet Droz moved out of its traditional comfort zone, where the brand so excels, with the Grande Seconde Skelet-One Ceramic, a watch with a striking design and no dial. The curves and design of the open-work architecture played on the light to help bring out the time display. The watchmakers have continued to explore this aesthetic path with a new model. As its name implies, the 41.5mm-wide case is again made of a high-tech material that is almost impossible to scratch, as well as being harder and lighter than steel. A dynamic coating gives it an anthracite tone that highlights its contemporary feel. The bridges are the same colour and stretch out like a spider’s web to hold the calibre’s components captive. In this monochrome world, the hour and minute hands move around a steel disc, while the off-centred second hand turns above a translucent sapphire surface. The three blued hands perfectly stand out in an uncluttered staging for optimal readability.
To make it ideal for all occasions and to match any clothing style, the Grande Seconde Skelet-One Ceramic comes with a blue fabric strap and a folding clasp.
Price: 24,850 CHF jaquet-droz.com
By Dan Diaconu
SOUND AND LIGHT SHOW
Combining the rhythms of a drum machine and the tempo of a watch mechanism, the brand from Nyon has created an extravagant world with limited editions designed with Nicky Jam.
Are you familiar with reggaeton? In case you don’t know, this is an urban music style that is spreading its high-tempo rhythms all over the American continent. Among the stars of the genre is Nicky Jam, whose success caught the eye of Hublot. He has been the brand’s ambassador since June 2018. And now three watches that are as colourful as the singer’s hit records have just been unveiled. The Big Bang Meca-10 Nicky Jam models are available in three different versions, all designed around a 45mm-wide case. The first is limited to 100 pieces and is made of black ceramic. The second comes in 30 copies and is designed in King Gold, an alloy combining gold with copper and platinum. The bezel and the dial are also set with precious stones, namely, yellow, orange and green sapphires. The colours borrow from the colours featured in the video for Nicky Jam’s song “X“, seen over 1.4 billion times on YouTube. The third specially made watch shines as brightly as the spotlights when the singer is onstage. This piece of luxury jewellery combines King Gold with 367 diamonds for a total of 19.54 carats.
All the Big Bang Meca-10 Nicky Jam feature the singer’s signature on the crystal caseback and come with a pair of straps featuring a folding clasp made of black alcantara or red, yellow and green alligator leather.
Price on request www.hublot.com
By Dan Diaconu
For the 2019 SIHH trade show in Geneva, Montblanc has enriched its collection with a sports-style chronograph displaying a “reverse panda” dial.
It all began in the late 1960s. Black sub-dials were added to a white dial on a famous chronograph. The ultra-readable dial recalled the face of the charming giant panda and turned out to be a big hit. Since then, all sports-style watches with this design are named after the cuddly herbivore. Montblanc has already released watches of this kind in the past. This year, the brand has introduced a model called the TimeWalker Automatic Chronograph with a “reverse panda” dial. Unlike the classic tricompax or bicompax designs, the chronograph’s totalisers here are white and placed on a vertical axis. The seconds sub-dial is discreetly located at 9 o’clock, providing a visual and symmetrical reply to the date counter at 3 o’clock. Otherwise, the watch has all the regular aesthetic features of the collection. The dauphine-style hour and minute hands move around an hour rim made up of generously proportioned indices and numerals. The central second hand still has a tip with a Minerva arrow, while a fixed, ceramic bezel with a tachymetric scale encircles the dial.
The time information and split-time measurements are driven by the calibre MB 25.07 (46 hours of power reserve), an automatic movement housed in a 41mm-wide steel case.
And to round off the racing vintage spirit, the TimeWalker Automatic Chronograph comes with a perforated black rubber strap.
Price: 4,000 EUR
By Dan Diaconu