Monthly Archives: April 2019

tissot t touch expert solar 2 swiss edition closeup



Proud of its Swiss roots, Le Locle-based Tissot selected the T-Touch, one of the signature models of its watch collections, to honor its home country’s culture.

2019 marks the 20th anniversary of a timepiece which is unique in its class: the Tissot T-Touch. The first tactile watch in the world, it quickly became a contemporary classic after it was launched in 1999. T as in Tissot and Touch: because a light touch of your finger gives you access to countless functions. This tool rapidly found an audience, especially with athletes, both amateur and professional. 20 years later, Tissot presents the T-Touch Swiss Edition, a timepiece which pays homage to its Helvetian origins.

tissot t touch expert solar 2 swiss edition closeupTissot’s homeland is of great importance to the brand. It demonstrates that here with a few touches borrowed from Swiss folklore, such as the chocolate color of its impressive ceramic bezel and the “chocolate bar” look created by the “Clou de Paris” pattern. The matching color of the aged leather wristband accentuates the look…delicious! The wristband is inspired by the traditional bell collars of Swiss cows. Next, the upper section of the dial, which hides the solar cells that power the T-Touch Swiss Edition, sports a tapestry of edelweiss and vertical stripes in a nod to the traditional costumes worn by the shepherds of the Swiss Alps. And to finish, the back of the 45 mm titanium case, which houses an ETA E84.301 caliber, is decorated with the Confederation’s shield.

At the center of the dial, two ajoure and luminescent hands reach over the digital and tactile display to show the hours and minutes “traditionally”. Along with these displays, the watch provides a large array of functions: weather, altimeter, compass, countdown timer, chronograph, two alarms, second time zone, and more. A Swiss army knife on your wrist!

Price: 995 CHF

By Sharmila Bertin

patek philippe 5520 calatrava pilot alarm travel time dial closeup



At Baselworld 2019, the Geneva watchmakers had the chance to unveil this impressive model, one of the most complex watches in its range.

In 2015, the traveller’s watch gained in prestige with the 5524 model by Patek Philippe. The watch stood out with a style inspired by pilot’s watches and featuring improved readability. A press on one of the two monopushers near the top and the bottom of the case were used to move local time forwards or back. This year, the Geneva manufacture has launched a striking new version, the Calatrava Pilot Alarm Travel Time (reference 5520P). The watch again features the practical GMT function, but now comes with an alarm.

patek philippe 5520 calatrava pilot alarm travel time dial closeupOn the dial, local time and the minutes are shown with Super-LumiNova®-coated hands. A third, skeletoned hand keeps track of the time at home. The date is shown in a counter at 6 o’clock. Two day and night indicators round off the time data. A double counter has made its appearance at 12 o’clock, showing the time set for the alarm. “On” and “off” are shown with a bell that changes colour depending on the setting. It is white when activated and black when turned off. You choose by pressing on the monopusher at 2 o’clock. When activated, the alarm rings for 35 seconds unless stopped beforehand. At 4 o’clock, the crown has several different roles. In the first position, you set the alarm clockwise. When turned anticlockwise, it winds up the watch. In position 2, the crown is used to change the alarm in either direction at intervals of 15 minutes. In position 3, you can set the time. It is worth noting that the date is synchronised to local time, as is the alarm.

The self-winding movement with 574 elements is housed in a 42.2mm-wide platinum case.

Price: 200,000 CHF

By Dan Diaconu

montblanc heritage monopusher chronograph lifstyle



Like a virtuoso musician practising scales, Montblanc shows off its skills in the Heritage collection, with models inspired by the rich past of Minerva, such as this chronograph.

We can set our smartphones today at the press of a finger, but watchmakers have long since been looking for solutions to make it easier to manage short-time intervals on chronographs. The Minerva manufacture, which was taken over by the Richemont group and incorporated into Montblanc in 2006, excells in creating monopusher chronographs that are both practical and refined. How do they work? Just one monopusher interrupts the curved outline of the watch case. Even better, some recent models fit the monopusher into the crown to provide the ultimate pure and simple design. To launch the timer, to stop or reset it, you just need to press down once or more. This system is to be found in the Heritage Monopusher Chronograph, unveiled at the 2019 SIHH. On the dial, simplicity is also the watchword. A 30-minute totaliser at 3 o’clock displays the time measured with a central second hand. A running seconds sub-dial at 9 o’clock brings symmetry to the layout of the time elements. Curved, dauphine-style hands move around the figures and indices in a vintage setting.

montblanc heritage monopusher chronograph lifstyleThe elegance of the model is enhanced by a Sfumato alligator leather strap. Montblanc has also made a Milanese mesh strap for the new watch.

Price: 4,700 EUR

By Dan Diaconu

chanel j12 2019 movement



With its simple name – a capital letter coupled with a number – the J12 has symbolised the modern sports-style watch since its launch in 2000. The ceramic model is made for both men and women and has taken on a new lease of life with a redesigned shape and a new automatic mechanism.

There is nothing harder for a designer than to work on an existing piece, and the task becomes even more perilous when it is an icon like the J12, first launched in 2000 in a black version, then released in white three years later. And yet, Arnaud Chastaingt, the director at Chanel’s watch design studio, has risen to the challenge with panache, since the aesthetic changes made to the new J12 are very discreet. Discreet, but wonderfully apt. You just need to place the two watches side by side to notice the differences.

chanel j12 2019 movementThe J12 is available in a Phantom version, where the time elements blend in with the white or black ceramics, and a version with indices set with 12 diamonds.

Price: 5,300 EUR (classic version) – 5,500 EUR (“Phantom“ version) – 6,500 EUR (version with diamond indices)

By Sharmila Bertin

hermes slim titane closeup



Since 2015, we have never been disappointed by the watches in the Slim collection! We love their simplicity and their visual features, well in evidence in this model.

With Hermès, time has entered another dimension. A dimension where style is not just a marketing pitch, but a real aesthetic aim. Each component has its own identity. Once brought together, the elements give the watch a unique character. For proof you just need to look at the brand-new Slim Titane. The chapter ring is made up of white figures in an original typeface. Designed by Philippe Apeloig, they are precisely cut out from the watch face. In the centre, an azure surface houses a grained counter at 6 o’clock in the same colour as the hours. While the Parisian firm likes to play with materials, it also shows unique skill in combining colours. So we find a touch of orange, Hermès’ trademark colour, on the figure 12 and on the small second hand, helping to bring the simple design to life. The watch is housed in a 39.5mm-wide titanium case with a swirling, satin-brushed bezel.

hermes slim titane closeupThe matt alligator leather strap worn with the Slim Titane recalls the colours on the dial. The front comes in a graphite tone, while the lining is a smooth orange.

Price: 5,900 EUR

By Dan Diaconu

audemars piguet code 11 59 qp closeup



In this essential model, the brand based in Le Brassus makes use of geometric shapes to provide a striking new visual design.

Bowing out with panache: this was Audemars Piguet’s aim at its last SIHH – the brand has opted not to take part in the major watchmaking event from next year. So this year was marked by a new collection, the Code 11.59. Its strong points? An original case, first of all, although it is based on the iconic Royal Oak. The outline follows the famous octagonal case drawn by Gerald Genta’s inspired pencil in 1972. This geometric shape is sandwiched between a round extra-slim bezel and sapphire crystal caseback. The open-work horns set up rounded lines to harmonise with the wrist. The polished and satin finishes on the 41mm-wide case catch the light in an attractive way. Light also flourishes on the dial of the Code 11.59 Perpetual Calendar. The time elements are set against a background decorated with aventurine in a midnight blue colour. Three small hands in the same number of sub-dials show the day, date and month. A realistic reproduction of the moon is housed at 6 o’clock and shows the moon phases. Lastly, the dial is encircled by a chapter ring with a white hand to indicate the week number.

audemars piguet code 11 59 qp closeupThe Code 11.59 Perpetual Calendar is an elegant model, worn with a blue alligator leather strap to perfectly match the rose gold case.

Price: 69,500 CHF

By Dan Diaconu

bulgari octo finissimo chronograph gmt caseback



Sport helps you stay in shape even in the world of watchmaking. If you have your doubts, then take a look at the world’s slimmest automatic GMT chronograph, announced at Baselworld!

bulgari octo finissimo chronograph gmt casebackThe strap on this traveller’s sports watch features sanded titanium links. A folding clasp guarantees comfort and safety.

Price: 16,500 CHF

By Dan Diaconu

chopard luc flying t twin dial closeup



Chopard, the creators of aesthetic and mechanical emotions, has produced a limited edition showing off its high manufacturing standards and underlining environmental commitments.

Elegance is a state of mind and can be embodied in different ways. At Chopard, we see it in the L.U.C. collection, with watches combining refined designs and exceptional mechanisms. The brand’s new model, unveiled at the 2019 Baselworld, nonetheless fills a gap with the first calibre featuring a flying tourbillon. For the occasion, the manufacture has designed a delicate setting built around a 40cm-wide and 7.2mm-thick, ultra-slim case made of Fairmined rose gold. The regulating organ driving the small seconds dial at 6 o’clock is enhanced by a solid-gold watch face featuring a hand-made guilloché pattern. At the centre of the L.U.C Flying T Twin is a honeycomb decoration encircled by an hour rim with an azure pattern.

chopard luc flying t twin dial closeupAnd to fully satisfy contemporary gentlemen with a concern for the environment, CITES has given its seal of approval to the strap worn sold with this limited edition of 50 pieces. It is made of matt black alligator leather and dyed with plant pigments. The CITES certification means that the origin of the leather poses no threat to the survival of the species in question.

Price: 109,000 EUR

By Dan Diaconu



In these new models, Vacheron Constantin highlights the importance of visual design for showing off a watch complication. The hardest thing will be to choose which dial you prefer!

The model with a pink-gold case and strap comes with two spare, easy to change straps. The first is made of blue alligator leather, the second of rubber in the same colour. These two straps are also included with the Overseas Perpetual Calendar Ultra-Thin model with the blue dial.

Price: 78,300 EUR (silver dial) – 76,500 EUR (blue dial)

By Dan Diaconu