Blancpain Date Moon Phases

Blancpain Quantième Phases de Lune

Women’s preferences as regards watches are a debated question. The main dichotomy is between quartz and mechanical. Brands such as Glashütte Original use quartz for their Pavonina watches and say that women prefer quartz because the watch is always running and so doesn’t need fiddly adjustment on a small crown. But, talking to a woman…

Limes Pharo DayDate

Limes Pharo DayDate

Limes, part of the Ickler stable that also owns Archimede, has introduced a new version of its Pharo DayDate. This is an attractive but relatively rare complication, and Limes’ version has touches of refinement such as the Clous-de-Paris guilloché dial, the fluting on the case side and blue Breguet hands. Case and dial The case…

Patek Philippe 7130 ladies’ World Time

Patek Philippe’s World Time for women is a variation of a watch that is already part of the catalogue. The new version has a white gold case 36 mm in diameter, a bezel set with 62 diamonds, and a blue-grey hand-guilloché dial, confirming the ongoing success of the blue-dial trend. The alligator strap is in…

Zenith Pilot Type 20 Extra Special 40 mm

Zenith is one of the few brands making pilot’s watches to have a genuine historic prototype on which to base its new models. The original timepiece made for Louis Blériot in 1909 set the scene for pilot’s watches, with its cathedral hands, large, chunky numerals, and a crown large enough to be used with flying…

Tissot Heritage Banana

Tissot Heritage Banana

The Heritage Banana by Tissot celebrates an anniversary, a rather unusual one for watchmaking: the Russian Revolution. A Russian customer bought a gold Tissot watch in 1916, and sent it back to Tissot in 1917 for maintenance and safekeeping during the October Revolution. Tissot were not able to return it due to import restrictions on…

Breitling Navitimer Rattrapante steel

Top 10 watches at Baselworld 2017

Baselworld is an enormous show, and this year it ran for a week starting from 23 March. The major trends emerging from the stands were a confirmation of the popularity of blue dials, the rise of sports watches – pieces with some features of diving watches but intended for everyday use – a move towards…

Jaquet Droz Loving Butterfly Automaton

The inspiration for this Jaquet Droz watch came from a sketch made by Henri-Louis Jaquet-Droz (Pierre’s son), for an automaton of a cherub on a chariot drawn by a butterfly. From 1768 to 1774, Pierre and Henri-Louis created some extraordinary automata, such as The Writer (a boy who dips a pen into an inkwell and…

Zenith Defy El Primero 21

Zenith Defy El Primero 21, a 100th-second chronograph

The Defy El Primero 21 by Zenith was undoubtedly one of the highlights of Baselworld 2017. With its chronograph seconds hand flashing around the dial once a second, and its movement that ensures timekeeping precision by means of two gear chains and two regulators, one for time and one for the chronograph, it is a…

Bovet 1822 Château de Môtiers 40 Papillon

Bovet 1822 Château de Môtiers 40 Papillon

The Château de Môtiers 40 Papillon by Bovet 1822 is a watch with a mother-of-pearl dial painted with a butterfly motif. The unusual feature is that it is painted with both conventional colour and luminescent paint, so that it takes on new life in the dark. Bovet say that the difficult part of the process…

Tudor Clair de Rose

Tudor Clair de Rose

The Tudor Clair de Rose has been completely reworked with respect to the 2013 version that had some interesting design touches, such as the rose forming the continuous seconds indicator (instead of a seconds hand) and the quirky crown protector. In the new 2017 Clair de Rose, Tudor have returned to a more classical design,…

Ateliers deMonaco La Sirène Diamant

Ateliers DeMonaco La Sirène Diamant and La Sirène Rubis

At Baselworld 2017, Ateliers deMonaco presented two new La Sirène timepieces, derived from the original 2009 watch inspired by Princess Charlene of Monaco (whose nickname is La Sirène, referring to her career as a swimmer that culminated in her participation in the 2000 Olympics). The two watches, one set with diamonds, the other with rubies,…

Ateliers DeMonaco La Sirène rubies

Ateliers DeMonaco

Brief company profile: Ateliers deMonaco was born as a tribute to a movement, and two years later, its founders decided to dedicate it to a city. The principal motive for its foundation was a minute repeater movement created over the course of two years by Pim Koeslag, a Dutch watchmaker born in 1981, who was…

Tudor Heritage Black Bay Chrono

The Tudor Heritage Black Bay Chrono, the first chronograph in the Black Bay family, has an unusual appearance, with elements recalling both motorsports and diving. The watch has a 41 mm case, with a circular-brushed steel bezel engraved with a tachymetric scale, so that you can read off speeds by timing a unit mile or…

Pierre DeRoche TNT GMT Power Reserve 43

Watches by Pierre DeRoche always have something a bit unusual. For one thing, this is the first watch by the brand to have a solid dial: all their other watches, such as the TNT Chrono 43 or the TNT Royal Retro Skull, have deconstructed dials that reveal part of the movement. The TNT GMT Power…

Oris Artelier Calibre 113

Oris Artelier Calibre 113

In-house. The capability of designing and building a mechanical watch movement is becoming increasingly important in watch marketing. There are different degrees of “in-house,” starting from companies such as Rolex and Jaeger-LeCoultre which make just about everything themselves, to others that design and assemble their own movements but buy some of the components from specialist…

Chopard Happy Ocean

Chopard Happy Ocean

Sports watches were one of the dominant themes at Baselworld 2017: the sort of watches that borrow some features of diving watches but are intended more for general use than specifically for diving. They generally have the water resistance of diver’s watches, enabling them to be kept on while swimming, diving, or just hiking in…

Rolex Oyster Perpetual Yacht-Master II

Rolex Oyster Perpetual Yacht-Master II

The Rolex Oyster Perpetual Yacht-Master II is the perfect example of the Rolex way: gradual modifications to an existing model, improving functionality and appearance. The 2017 Yacht-Master II doesn’t have all that much that is new – a triangular hour marker at 12 o’clock, a rectangular hour marker at 6 o’clock, new hour and minute…

Breitling Superocean Héritage II

Breitling Superocean Héritage II

Breitling has redesigned the Superocean Héritage line, celebrating the 50th anniversary of the collection. A comparison show that the new Superocean Héritage II is not so different from the 1957 model, which had an endearing arrangement of circular and spike-form hour markers, shorter hands and no date window: And it’s not so different from the…

Frederique Constant Flyback Chronograph Manufacture

What Frederique Constant has succeeded in achieving over a relatively short period of time is astounding. Sufficient vertical integration to equip some of their watches with in-house movements, and pricing that they justifiably refer to as accessible luxury. At Baselworld 2017, Frederique Constant presented their “Flyback Chronograph Manufacture.” They say that the process of design…

Breitling Navitimer Rattrapante steel

Breitling Navitimer Rattrapante

Breitling’s Navitimer Rattrapante is an exceptional watch. It has a new in-house split-seconds chronograph movement that incorporates two patents, it is COSC chronometer-certified, and it operates using the most prestigious chronograph layout, column wheel and vertical clutch. It comes in two versions, steel and gold, and the gold version has a display caseback. The dial…