Friday, October 31, 2014

Grand Prix D’horlogerie De Genève 2014 Awards: The Winners are:-

On 31 October in the Grand Théâtre de Genève, the prestigious Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève (GPHG) awards for this year were announced. The international jury of this edition 2014 of the GPHG handed out 16 prizes, including the supreme “Aiguille d’Or”, distinction, awarded to Breguet for the Classic Chronométrie model. This prize was officially presented on-stage by the Federal Councillor Johann Schneider-Ammann, who praised the vitality of the Swiss watch industry.
Breguet, Classique Chronométrie
 Jointly hosted by Melanie Winiger and Frédéric Beigbeder, the ceremony was attended by around 1,500 guests including influential figures from the world of watchmaking, finance and politics, who congregated in Geneva for this annual celebration of the 12th art.This 14th edition of the GPHG registered a record participation with representation from all the major watchmaking groups as well as a number of independent companies.
Laureates of the Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève 2014 : Bart and Tim Grönefeld (co-founders of Grönefeld), Kari Voutilainen (Founder of Voutilainen), Felix Baumgartner et Martin Frei (co-fournders of Urwerk),  Pierre Jacques (CEO De Bethune), Walter Lange (Founder of A. Lange & Söhne), Christophe Claret (Founder and President of Christophe Claret), Aldo Magada (President & CEO of Zenith), Dr Helmut Crott (Owner of Urban Jürgensen & Sonner),  Johann Schneider-Ammann (Federal Councilor), Jean-Christophe Babin (CEO of Bulgari), Jean-Charles Zufferey (Vice-president of Breguet), Ricardo Guadalupe (CEO of Hublot), Carlo Lamprecht (President of the Fondation du GPHG), Ryuhei Maeda (HE Ambassador of Japan in Switzerland) and Naoko Maeda, Wilhelm Schmid (CEO of A. Lange & Söhne), Pierre Maudet (State councilor), Stephen Urquhart (CEO of Omega),  Susumu Kawanishi (Senior Vice-president of Seiko), Vincent Becchia (Product director of Blancpain)

The public, after votes cast on internet and at the international exhibitions, selected its own favourite which won the Public Prize: Breguet, Classique Dame.

After New Delhi and Beijing, the exhibition of the watches pre-selected by the jury is still on show at the Cité du Temps in Geneva until November 2nd. In the final stage of this road show, the prize-winning watches in this 2014 edition will be presented in London at the Salon QP from November 6th to 8th.



Thursday, October 30, 2014

Dragon Chronophage, the World’s Most Expensive Contemporary Clock on Display at Design Shanghai 2015

After breaking ground in 2014 as China’s most successful design show opening to date and welcoming more than 47,000 visitors, Design Shanghai returns on 27 – 30 March 2015 with an exciting line up of international brands and designers across its three halls: Contemporary Design, Classic Design and Collectible Design.

Acclaimed British inventor responsible for the thermostat found in today’s electric kettles, Dr John C Taylor OBE will be exhibiting one of the world’s most innovative clocks, the Dragon Chronophage, at the Collectible Design hall at Design Shanghai 2015.
The 450kg Dragon Chronophage – which translates from Latin as ‘time eater’ – is made of gold-plated stainless steel, formed using a special underwater explosion technique. Through the use of concentric circles on the face, the seconds, minutes and hours are shown in a way that’s never been seen before.
Created by Dr Taylor in tandem with Professor Long of the Hangzhou Art University, the Chronophage is a physical interpretation of Einstein’s idea of relative time: each minute may go quickly or slowly – even stopping altogether – but every five minutes the clock catches up with ‘real’ time. Every hour the specially designed mechanical dragon escapement reveals and swallows a pearl, a Chinese symbol of good luck.

One of the world’s most expensive contemporary clocks, the Dragon Chronophage combines timeless Western and Eastern culture with staggering attention to detail and jewellery standard quality.
Design Shanghai
Design Shanghai is China’s leading international design event. In 2014, Design Shanghai opened its doors to over 47,000 visitors, breaking new ground and setting a precedent in China’s ever-growing design community. Showcasing the best design brands from across the globe, Design Shanghai provides a unique and exciting platform to network and establish long-term business relations with China’s top architects, interior designers, developers, facilities managers and private buyers. 2015 will see the return of China’s premier design event at the stunning Shanghai Exhibition Centre, featuring even more of the finest international design houses.

Design Shanghai 2015
27 – 30 March 2015
Shanghai Exhibition Centre
Jingan District, Shanghai, China

Konstantin Chaykin Genius Temporis

World renowned Russian watch manufacture, Konstantin Chaykin presents the Genius Temporis, and exceptional timepiece based on single hand concept. This timepiece will be unveiled on November 06, at Salon QP 2014 in London. Thanks to Konstantin Chaykin’s latest invention, this “loner” now also indicates minutes, whilst retaining the minimalist elegance of a classic single handed watch.

A single hour hand engages in a command performance framed by a luxurious face decorated in the style of 17th century pocket watches: first it indicates hours and then minutes, all at the whim of the owner. The change is effected by pressing a button located at 2:00 on the side of the case. The hour hand leaps gracefully and shows the precise minute.
The Genius Temporis Watch runs on the proprietary K01-5 caliber, which was developed especially for this model. The K01-5 caliber is highly complicated in construction, production, assembly and adjustment. It consists of over one hundred details, each of which is finished by hand in the Konstantin Chaykin Manufacture.

Alexey Kutkovoy, the Russian watch expert and journalist suggested the name “Genius Temporis”, which is Latin for ‘The Spirit of Our Time’ because Alexey felt that this name best reflects the evolution of single handed watches as an echo of our perception of time.

Technical details
Caliber K01-5
Escapement: anchor
Dimensions: 36 х 7,8 mm
Jewels: 29
Power Reserve: 48 hours
Materials: steel, bronze, brass and gold.

Diameter: 44 mm,
Materials: rose gold   

Hour Indication
Minute Indication on demand

Diameter: 44
Materials: brass, gilding, rhodium plated

Breitling Galactic 44

The Galactic collection by Breitling welcomes a new large-sized model featuring a 44 mm diameter and a satin-brushed bezel with rubber-inlaid hour-markers.

In 130 years, Breitling has asserted itself as the specialist of chronographs and instruments for professionals. But this expertise also enables it to create watches reflecting the same performance-oriented spirit, such as the Galactic. This ubersporty, versatile and sophisticated model is intended for all those whose activities do not necessarily require chronograph functions, but who are nonetheless looking for a watch that is at once sturdy, accurate and reliable. After a 41 mm self-winding version and two 36 and 32 mm ladies’ models, the collection is now enriched with a new large-sized watch.
In adopting a 44 mm diameter, the Galactic has strengthened its technical and masculine appeal. The unidirectional rotating bezel takes on a satin-brushed finish along with black rubber-inlaid hour-markers, while the dial features two apertures for the day and date at 12 and 3 o’clock respectively, along with a compass scale and a graduated scale with 1/100th of an hour divisions on the inner bezel.
The large hands and hour-markers enhanced with a luminescent coating guarantee excellent readability, reinforced by the sapphire crystal glare-proofed on both sides. The polished steel case is water-resistant to 200 m/660 ft and equipped with a screw-lock crown protected by reinforcements.

It houses a self-winding movement chronometer-certified by the COSC (Swiss Official Chronometer Testing Institute), the highest benchmark in terms of reliability and precision. The new Galactic 44 is available with a black, blue or silver dial, fitted with a choice of steel bracelet or a strap in leather, crocodile leather, rubber or military type fabric.

Technical details
Breitling Caliber 45, officially chronometer-certified by the COSC
Self winding, high-frequency (28,800 vibrations)
Day/date calendar

Water-resistant to 200 m/660 ft
Unidirectional ratcheted rotating bezel with compass scale
Cambered sapphire crystal, glare-proofed on both sides
Diameter: 44 mm

Trophy black, Metallica blue, Sierra silver

Leather, crocodile leather, rubber Diver Pro, Military/Pilot

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Glashütte Original presents its new chronographs exclusively in Stuttgart, Germany

Numerous guests discover innovative timepieces at the beginning of an international roadshow with an exclusive evening event on 23 Oct in the Baden-Wurttembergian capital Stuttgart the Saxon watch manufacturer Glashütte Original continued its road show for the presentation of its most recent masterpieces.
More than 130 guests, among them numerous business partners, customers, journalists and friends of the brand, accepted the invitation to the Carhotel Stuttgart and celebrated the market launch of the new watch models with the innovative Calibre 37 chronograph movement.
The automatic Calibre 37, which was developed from the ground up and made in the firm’s own manufactory debuts in two exquisite models at the same time: the elegant Senator Chronograph Panorama Date and the sporty Seventies Chronograph Panorama Date.
Senator Chronograph Panorama Date
After the initial presentation in spring 2014 at the international Baselworld fair now the new watches make their initial appearances in the firm’s own boutiques around the world, to be followed by their step-by step presentation in the stores of authorised dealers. Thus the guests in Dresden were among the first to experience the new chronographs “live”.
Seventies Chronograph Panorama Date
Germany’s brand manager Lothar Schlichting and Glashütte Original’s Vice President Sales Dieter Pachner opened the show with a word of welcome and an invitation to explore the new chronographs in all their facets and technical particulars.
There were plenty of opportunities to do so: one watchmaker from the manufactory was on hand for live presentations of selected steps in the assembly of the Calibre 37 and other mechanical movements. Interested guests were offered a chance to try their hand at the watchmaker’s craft and to test their intuition. The technology of the new chronograph movement and the history of chronograph production in Glashütte were presented in an interactive exhibition, which will be shown at the Breuninger Flagship-Store in Stuttgart from November 3 to 28, before it continues its international roadshow.
Besides Lothar Schlichting and Dieter Pachner there was also Mr. Alfred Eberle among the hosts of that evening. Mr. Eberle is the technical director of the Glashütte Original dial manufactory in Pforzheim which is nearby Stuttgart. He is an expert for the manufacture of the delicate dials which are also used for the new models to give each watch line its individual face.
Mr. Alfred Eberle with Dieter Pachner
One attraction proved especially popular with the guests: a slot-car racetrack featured a track in the form of the typical Glashütte Original “Double-G logo”. As the model cars raced around the track, the individual times, along with that of the evening’s fastest driver, were stopped, precisely and reliably, using the new chronographs.

Musical accompaniment for the evening was provided by Echo Prize winner, music producer and DJ Sven Helbig, who made his name with numerous international appearances and music projects undertaken with, among others, the Pet Shop Boys. Together with the cellist Konstantin Heidrich he presented an unusual mixture of electronic and orchestral music. This performance, the first class catering and many interesting discussions made time seem to fly.
The Dresden event on 10 October 2014 and subsequent exhibition in the QF quarter at the Frauenkirche in Dresden (11 - 21 October 2014) was the first stop on a worldwide road show featuring the new chronographs with the Calibre 37 movement.

- Dresden (11 - 21 October 2014)
- Stuttgart, Breuninger Flag-Ship Store:  3 - 28 November 2014
- New York, New Museum:    13 November 2014
- Chicago, Tourbillon Store:    17 - 24 November 2014

Short Story Contest
Anyone unable to attend a live presentation can learn about the new chronograph in the context of an interactive online campaign. An innovative initiative headlined „Our Chronograph – Your Story. The Art of the Chronograph in Short Stories“invites fans of watch technology and connoisseurs of the art of German watchmaking to write a short story on one of five themes involving the new chronograph.

The short stories can be sent by email to The Chronograph@Glashuette-Originalor submitted directly using the contest form on the web page set up for this purpose at Details of the contest and conditions can be consulted on this page.

The short stories will be published on the web site blog, where they can be read and judged by fans. Fans will be asked to choose a crowd favourite, while Glashütte Original will select an additional finalist. The 2 winners take home an exclusive invitation to the 2015 Berlin International Film Festival. The short story contest runs from October 10 through December 8, 2014.

Franc Vila Vintage Chrono Bicompax Intrepido

This new Franc Vila chronograph takes its inspiration from Mediterranean chic and glamour imbued with a resolutely 1960s holiday spirit. This luminous and trendy timepiece with its red accents is also powerful and extremely sturdy thanks to a case construction combining titanium for lightness and “Diehard Extreme Steel” for robustness. The sunburst guilloché blue dial boasts a 30-minute chronograph counter at 9 o’clock; small seconds dial at 3 o’clock and date window at 6 o’clock. The blue crocodile leather with red topstitching enhances the sporty look to this chronograph. The Vintage Chrono Bicompax Intrepido houses mechanical automatic FV17 calibre with “Gold concept”, a rotor concept exclusive to Franc Vila. Production of this sporty timepiece is limited to 88 pieces.
Technical details
Mechanical automatic FV17 calibre, assembled and finished by hand, “Goldconcept rotor” exclusive to Franc Vila, 42-hour power reserve

Hours, minutes, seconds, date, bicompax chronograph

Titanium, “Esprit Unique” ellipse shape, 56.5 x 47 mm
“DieHard Extreme Steel” bezel
Sapphire crystal and back with anti-reflective coating on both sides.
Water-resistant to 100 metres

Sunburst guilloché blue
30-minute counter at 9 o’clock, small seconds at 3 o’clock
Date window at 6 o’clock

Blue crocodile leather with red topstitching
Steel folding clasp

Indicative retail prices
CHF16, 200/ USD 18,400/€12,500.-

IWC Schaffhausen Big Pilot’s Watch Edition "Le Petit Prince" (Ref. IW500908)

Swiss watch manufacture IWC Schaffhausen unveils BIG PILOT’S WATCH EDITION "LE PETIT PRINCE" (Ref. IW500908), the fourth watch paying homage to Antoine de Saint-Exupery and his legendary book "Le Petit Prince". This edition with a midnight blue dial closely follows the classic Pilot's Watches from IWC Schaffhausen and is limited to 1,000 pieces.
This stainless steel model is equipped with a mechanical movement manufactured in house by IWC. Equipped with Pellaton automatic winding system, this exceptional movement delivers 7-day power reserve when fully wound. The midnight blue dial boasts a power reserve display at 3’o clock and date display at 6’o clock. The rhodium plated hands and indices are coated with Super-LumiNova. This limited edition timepiece has special engraving featuring the little prince and inscription “IWC ∙ LE PETIT PRINCE ∙ ONE OUT OF 1000” on case back.
Technical details
IWC-manufactured calibre   51111
Frequency: 21,600 A/h / 3 Hz
Jewels: 42
Power reserve: 7 days (168 h)
Winding: automatic, Pellaton automatic winding system
Glucydur® beryllium alloy balance
Breguet spring

Case, dial and strap
Case and folding clasp in stainless steel, midnight blue dial, rhodium plated hands and indices, coated with Super-LumiNova®, brown calfskin strap with quilted stitching
Central hacking seconds
Glass: sapphire, convex, antireflective coating on both sides, withstands drops in air pressure
Screw-in crown
Water-resistant: 6 bar
Diameter: 46 mm
Case height: 16 mm
Limited to 1,000 watches

A. Lange & Söhne celebrates 20th anniversary of iconic LANGE 1 in Dresden

On 24th October 2014, the best-known model LANGE 1 from A. Lange & Söhne celebrated its 20th birthday. On this occasion, the traditional watch brand launched the LANGE 1 TOURBILLON HANDWERKSKUNST in the castle of Dresden – the place, where, to the day, the first four timepieces after the comeback of the brand have been launched 20 years ago.
About 140 guests from 26 countries had come to Dresden on Friday, 24th October 2014, to celebrate the 20th anniversary of Lange’s first collection. Back then, the LANGE 1 was launched as one of four models. With its unique combination of classic style elements and technical innovations, it has epitomised the core and the identity of the re-born A. Lange & Söhne brand.
Now, the 20th birthday of the brand icon was celebrated with a limited special edition. Lange CEO Wilhelm Schmid and Anthony de Haas, Director Product Development, presented the new timepiece LANGE 1 TOURBILLON HANDWERKSKUNST at a press conference in the castle of Dresden.
Furthermore, Wilhelm Schmid and company founder Walter Lange bestowed the F. A. Lange Watchmaking Excellence Award upon Torsti Laine (42) from Finland. The watchmaking student from the Kelloseppäkoulu – The Finnish School of Watchmaking –received 10,000 Euros prize money for his design of a moon-phase display that also emulates the earth phases from the moon’s perspective. The award emphasises the importance of sustainable funding of watchmaker trainings for the future of fine-watchmaking.

Additionally, Wilhelm Schmid handed over a donation of 20,000 Euros to Sonnenstrahl e.V., represented by Professor Reinhard Berner from the oncological station of Dresden’s university hospital and Antje Hermann from the public charity that supports kids and adolescents with cancer who are under physician care at this station.

Watch In Focus – Oris Aquis Depth Gauge

Since the introduction of quartz movements, programmable computers and micro-sensor technology, the mechanical dive watch has become to diving what the horseshoe is to motoring. The day of the tool watch, with its ticking, clicking, pulsing innards, is done, dead, gone. Or is it?

When the Aqua-Lung - Jacques-Yves Cousteau's self-contained underwater breathing apparatus - was developed in 1945, divers had no choice but to go mechanical. One wrist was for time, the other for depth, and that was how things were done. Today, a single, cheap watch can do all of that and more, including recording dive logs and calculating decompression times, making its mechanical granddad well and truly redundant.

That sounds pretty much like the death knell for the mechanical dive watch, but then so did the introduction of quartz movements for mechanical watches in general - but it wasn't. Quite the opposite, in fact, because now mechanical watches are more popular than ever. Why? Because in a world of technological speed and stress, the simplicity and comfort of out-dated practices comes as something of a reassurance, a comfort. We drive to get somewhere; we walk to relax. We have gas central heating; we fit a roaring wood fire. We have advanced dive computers; we dive with our mechanical watches.

Oris Aquis Depth Gauge
Championing the future of the affordable mechanical dive watch (and affordable they should be; after all, even Rolex released a cheap, non-chronometer version of their Submariner for divers with tighter budgets - the 5513) is Oris, whose dive watches have long offered fantastic value for money. This, the Aquis Depth Gauge, is no exception, offering a solid 500 metres of water resistance and fantastic build for just £2,100. But there's more to it than that, because the Aquis Depth Gauge has achieved the unachievable: developing an affordable, mechanical Depth Gauge. There have been watches with mechanical depth gauges before - the IWC Deep One and Two, the Jaeger-LeCoultre Pro Diving Geographic, the Blancpain X-Fathoms, the Panerai Submersible Depth Gauge - but none that adhere to the tradition of affordability.

So how did Oris do it? Well, the mechanics here are purely theoretical, because there isn't a moving part in sight. Using a channel cut into the double-thick sapphire crystal and a calibrated scale printed on the underside, Oris took advantage of the Boyle-Mariotte law to produce a self-actuating depth gauge. Because gas is compressed proportionally with increasing pressure, the math is quite simple (P=k/V if you're interested), but it takes a previously unattainable level of precision to cut the channel accurately enough for use.

Oris Diving Watch

And it works. Well. As water enters the channel, the cloudy sapphire becomes much darker, and the divide between gas and liquid from which the depth is read is clearly defined. It would take a deep dive (or a night dive) for it to be too dark to read, and that's probably the point where you should leave nostalgia behind and just use a proper dive computer anyway.

Oris Watches

Torsti Laine, a student of Kelloseppäkoulu (The Finnish School of Watchmaking) wins F. A. Lange Watchmaking Excellence Award 2014

For the fifth time now, prestigious German watch manufacture A. Lange & Söhne has awarded an achievement prize to an up-and-coming watchmaker. This year, the EUR 10,000 prize went to Finland.

The “F. A. Lange Watchmaking Excellence Award” for the year 2014 was presented on 24 October. Torsti Laine, a student of Kelloseppäkoulu – The Finnish School of Watchmaking – received the prize of EUR 10,000 for his design of a moon-phase display that also emulates the earth phases from the moon’s perspective. The 42-year-old computer expert decided to make his passion for watchmaking avocation only a few years ago. He accepted the prize from company founder Walter Lange and Lange CEO Wilhelm Schmid at an international press event.
The assignment of this year’s competition was to create and craft a moon-phase display in compliance with Lange’s quest for the utmost in precision. In the course of 2014, Lange launched two new models with this astronomical complication: they reproduce the orbit of the earth’s companion with an accuracy of 122.6 and 1058 years, respectively. Eight aspiring watchmakers from seven countries qualified to compete for the prize. They spent one week at the manufactory in May, during which they were acquainted with the assignment in detail.
A jury consisting of five experts assessed the entries in October. In addition to company founder Walter Lange and Anthony de Haas, Head of Product Development at Lange, the jury members included journalists Gisbert L. Brunner and Peter Braun as well as Peter Plassmeyer, the director of the Royal Cabinet of Mathematical and Physical Instruments in Dresden. The panel assessed the originality of the idea, its technical functionality, the quality of craftsmanship, and aesthetical aspects.

Torsti Laine’s concept impressed the jury from the very beginning. With a pusher, his moon-phase display can be adjusted to render the appearance of the moon as seen from anywhere in the world. But the experts were also surprised by the additional function on the movement side: the display of the earth’s progression as viewed from the moon. In creating this complication, the Finnish aerospace enthusiast was inspired by the Apollo 8 mission in 1968, during which the astronauts had the first opportunity to observe the dark side of the moon.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Montblanc Great Characters – John F Kennedy Edition

With every Great Characters Edition, Montblanc commemorates individuals who have broken new ground in the fields of culture, politics, science or the arts, and the impact of the legacy they have left behind.

John F. Kennedy, one of the best known presidents in American history, inspired the world with his dynamism, optimism and ambition. During his short time as the 35th President of the United States, he was responsible for extraordinary accomplishments -enabling the first ever flight to land a man on the moon, paving the way to end segregation through civil rights advocacy and inspiring the young with the Peace Corps.

The Montblanc Great Characters John F. Kennedy Edition pays tribute to the many facets of JFK: the statesman, the charismatic leader, the intellectual, but also the personal side of this figure as a devoted family man. The design of each edition reveals one of the facets of John F. Kennedy’s fascinating personality, and the influences that shaped his vision as a man.

The John F. Kennedy Special Edition focuses on his family background and the passions that motivated him in life. The Ivy League style of the writing instrument with its cap and barrel made of dark blue precious resin reflects his education, while the rings on the barrel symbolize his military career as a young WWII veteran.

The importance of family throughout his life is reflected in the three rings on the cap representing his three brothers. Celebrating one of his crowning achievements, the pattern on the cap rings is inspired by the footprints of the first steps on the moon, while his vision to send a man to the moon is also immortalized in the lunar module engraved on the writing instrument’s 750 solid gold nib. The writing instrument’s clip with its distinctive 1960s style is decorated with the President’s initials “JFK”. With a limitation number referring to his birth year, the John F. Kennedy Limited Edition 1917 displays design elements inspired by his private life. The red, white and blue colour scheme reflects the traditional colours of sailing.
The rope pattern under the lacquer on the cap and barrel underscore the passion for sailing that started as a boy. Furthermore, the rhodium plated 750 solid gold nib is engraved with the lifesaver of his first boat: the Victura, which was given to him a present from his parents when he was just 15 years old. The three rings represent his three brothers, while the 10 marks on the cap top and cone reference the 10 Kennedy family members, the parents Joseph Kennedy and Rose Kennedy, Joseph Jr., Rosemary, Kathleen, Eunice, Patricia, Robert Francis, Jean-Ann and Edward (Ted).
The inspirational motto central to his presidential campaign “A Time For Greatness” is engraved on the cap ring, while the iconic “JFK” is placed on the clip. The writing instrument is crowned with the Montblanc emblem in moon quartz, reflecting his vision to get a man to the moon.

The Montblanc Great Character John F. Kennedy Edition captures the achievements and the vision of the youngest man ever elected to the United States presidency - a legacy of optimism, prosperity and technological and social progress.

The Montblanc Great Character John F. Kennedy Special Edition is available in Montblanc boutiques worldwide from December, 2014; the John F. Kennedy Limited Edition 1917 starting from January 2015.

In connection with the launch of the Limited Edition J. F. Kennedy, Montblanc is participating as a sponsor in the work of the charity Best Buddies International, Inc. Best Buddies is a non-profit organisation dedicated to establishing a global volunteer movement that creates opportunities for one-to one friendships, integrated employment and leadership development for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD).

Backes & Strauss - The Royal ASHOKA® Empress (Royal ASHOKA® Collection)

Masters of Diamonds, Backes & Strauss unveils the Royal ASHOKA® Collection, a new line of one-of-a-kind diamond watches bringing William Goldberg’s exceptional ASHOKA® diamonds to the world of haute horlogerie.

The inaugural piece from the collection which will be unveiled during the World Presentation of Haute Horlogerie (taking place in Japan from October 28 - 31) is set with no fewer than 92 ASHOKA® cut diamonds, 131 Ideal Cut diamonds and two baguette cut diamonds - making a total of 225 diamonds, one for every year that Backes & Strauss, the world's oldest diamond company, has been in existence. The total weight of diamonds used in the watch amounts to 26.21 carats.

This unique timepiece draws its inspiration from the legendary Ashoka the Great, benevolent ruler of India's Maurya dynasty during the third century BC.

From the depths of the Hindu Kush to the jungles of Bengal, Ashoka presided over an impressive empire - but, unlike many of his peers, he ruled with love, respect and compassion for his subjects having decided to turn his back on war and adopt Buddhism as his way of life. He spread the doctrine throughout Asia, establishing monuments to Gautama Buddha.

Many hundreds of years after his death in 232 BC, Ashoka's name was adopted for a 41.37 carat, D colour, internally flawless diamond which was pulled from an Indian mine and cut by an unknown craftsman of unrivalled skill. Such is its beauty, it has been credited with the ability to abolish sorrow and eradicate pain. Inspired by the mystical 'Ashoka Diamond', William Goldberg, the legendary Manhattan diamond company, created an entirely new, unique and original cut called the 'ASHOKA®' that was granted its very own patent.

An elongated, antique cushion cut that captures light and disperses it with a fiery brilliance, the ASHOKA® can only be executed using diamonds that meet the Goldberg family's exacting specifications -  and only Goldberg master craftsmen have the skill, experience and expertise to bring to life the ASHOKA® cut which has 62 displayed facets and rounded corners.

Backes & Strauss is proud to have created the Royal ASHOKA® Collection, a new line of one-of-a-kind timepieces which bring William Goldberg's exceptional ASHOKA® diamonds to the world of fine watchmaking for the very first time.  

Combining a brilliance for horology and a passion for diamonds, Backes & Strauss is the ultimate diamond watch company. Adding a line of unique timepieces using William Goldberg’s ASHOKA® diamonds was the perfect addition to the world’s oldest diamond company’s Royal collection.

Technical Details
Size: 21 x 16 mm
Case: 18k white gold case set with 130 Ideal Cut diamonds – 1.62 carats
Dial: Black mother-of-pearl
Crown: One Ideal Cut diamond “The Jewel in the
Crown” – 0.06 carats
Hands: Sword-shaped hands
Movement: Quartz movement
Display: Hours and minutes
Bracelet: Jewellery bracelet in 18k white gold set with 92 ASHOKA® diamonds  –  24.44 carats, and 2 Baguette Cut diamonds – 0.09 carats
Total Carats: 225 diamonds –26.21 carats

Ulysse Nardin opens first flagship Boutique in Istanbul

Swiss luxury watch manufacture Ulysse Nardin and its exclusive Turkish partner Sark Saatçilik are proud to announce the opening of the first Ulysse Nardin flagship Boutique in Istanbul at Nişantaşı. CEO of Ulysse Nardin Patrik Hoffmann, Chairman of Sark Saatçilik Mustafa Eliaçık and President of Turmepa association Tezcan Yaramancı honoured the boutique opening.
The first moments of the opening started with a cocktail in the attendance of many celebrities from the business community and from field of art. The street decorated in a marine concept exclusively for the reception turned on the heat with the band “Flapper Swing”s music.
For its first boutique opening in Turkey, Ulysse Nardin cooperated with “Turmepa” Association and designed a giant fish installation with plastic bottles picked up from the seashore by volunteers.
The fish monument was exhibited during the reception and was donated to the association at the end of the night. With this social responsibility project organised by Ulysse Nardin and Turmepa cooperation, the aim was to draw attention to the protection of sea.

Clerc Hydroscaph H1 Chronometer

The Hydroscaph H1 Chronometer by Clerc is a fabulous dive watch designed to explore extreme dives. Sporting a powerful, technical case, this watch is designed to plunge to a depth of 500 metres, and benefits from Clerc's exclusive, patented safety features to prevent any risk of accidental resetting while underwater.
Equipped with the exclusive Clerc C609 movement, this timepiece leaves nothing to be desired in terms of performance or resistance, having passed the tests imposed by the COSC to enter the elite category of authentic chronometers.
Technical details
Mechanical automatic, exclusive Clerc C609 calibre
Officially chronometer-certified by the COSC
21 jewels
"Côtes de Genève" motif on the bridges, blued screws
28,800 vib/h
42-hour power reserve

Hours, minutes, seconds, date

Steel, with or without black DLC, 43.8 mm or 48 mm including lateral reinforcements
Steel bezel, with or without black DLC
Bezel rotated and blocked by the crown
Anti-reflective sapphire crystal
Transparent back
Water-resistant to 500 metres

Luminescent 3D markers and hands
Date window at 3 o'clock

Steel, Louisiana alligator or vulcanised rubber with folding clasp

Indicative retail price
CHF 6,600 /USD 6,600/ €6,080

U-BOAT Classico Chrono Silver Limited Edition

Italo Fontana expresses his passion for 925 Sterling Silver in the U-BOAT Classico Chrono Silver Limited Edition.

The majority of U-BOAT pieces use advanced and unusual techniques and materials – acid baths, carbon fibre, etc. All materials interest Italo Fontana, the Creator of U-BOAT; from classic steel to titanium, tungsten, carbon, bronze, gold and ceramic. Among this variety, Sterling Silver 925 is also quite an intriguing material for Fontana.
In the new Classico Chrono Silver, he expresses his passion for it in its rough essence. The material has not received any specific treatments in order keep it raw and it will be exposed to the natural changes of time.
The concept is to have a living material inviting the owner to take care of his piece over time. Limited edition-only 150 units, the Classico Chrono Silver boasts a 48 mm sterling silver case; an approximately weight of 120 gr; a left hand sided crown; a special protective device and a central horn welded to the case. Regarding the two superimposed dials the watch comes in two versions.
One is black carbon fiber, with the other dial cut, and treated with composite beige pigments. The second model presents one of the superimposed dials in beige, with the other one cut, and treated with composite black pigments. Last but not least the handmade and hand finished dark brown calf leather strap is with a tongue buckle in sterling silver.

Christophe Claret Margot wins the Best Ladies Watch Award at SIAR 2014

Christophe Claret’s Margot has won the Best Ladies Watch Award at the Salon Internacional Alta Relojeria 2014 during the closing ceremony.

The SIAR, the most important regional watch exhibition in Latin America, celebrated its eighth edition this year at the St. Regis hotel in downtown Mexico City, from October 21st -23rd, where 32 brands were exhibiting.

“He loves me, he loves me not.” What hopeless romantic hasn’t ever picked the petals off a daisy to discover how their sweetheart feels about them?
This classic conundrum comes to life on Margot, the first Christophe Claret complication specifically developed for women. Debuting at Baselworld this past spring, the elegant Margot has already conquered the hearts of those in the horological world.
Margot’s automatic winding movement features an enchantingly innovative complication that lets the wearer ‘pick’ the petals off a daisy on the dial. With each press of the pusher at 2 o’clock, a crystalline chime resonates and a petal – sometimes a pair of petals, it is impossible to foresee – subtly disappears under the dial in a smooth action, perfectly depicting the delicate undressing of the flower.

The eagerly-awaited answer (in French) appears in a window at 4 o’clock. The feminine gold case has a curved profile to marry with even the most slender of wrists. The natural mother of pearl dial exudes romantic femininity, revealing delicately engraved verses penned by Victor Hugo. A pair of gold-tipped, steel hands glides over the 12 white, satin-lacquered titanium petals that tightly embrace the central citrine pistil. Three pear-shaped diamonds at 3 o’clock, 6 o’clock and 9 o’clock poetically punctuate the scene.

The display back reveals the automatic winding rotor – a delicately carved, flower-shaped carousel of colors symbolizing sentiments of love. Margot is the perfect allegory for Christophe Claret’s desire to create a watch that is both charming and complex, the ultimate embodiment of women. Margot blossoms in four limited editions of 20 pieces each.

Swedish watch brand Halda to unveil a new Race Pilot model at Salon QP in London

With a strong conviction of never compromising and a refusal of doing anything but the best, Halda Watch Co was established in 1887.  Back then, it was the first watch factory in northern Europe – today, a company that produces 300 sought after timepieces a year and combining fine watchmaking with functions that truly makes a difference in life. After having developed watches for astronauts and Formula One drivers and sold watches worldwide, Halda now tend to meet the increasing demand in the UK with a launch at this year’s Salon QP.

The exclusive Halda-watches are based on a revolutionary concept that consists of interchangeable time modules that can be docked into a time platform – one mechanical module, which stands for the history and passion for fine mechanics and one electronic module – representing the future and the advantages of modern technology. Each module is developed for optimal performance in its respective environment –that is why Halda watches deliver superior functionality and why the Halda Concept has been honored with the prestigious Red Dot Design Award.
The first manifestation of this unique concept was the Halda Space Discovery – a limited and numbered edition of 128 units. To meet the extreme demands that a mission to space involves, the Space Module was developed in close cooperation with astronauts and tested during the NASA mission STS-128. Halda Space Discovery is loaded with sophisticated functions such as G-Force sensors, Earth Timer, Event Log and Mission Elapsed Timer – functions that assist astronaut’s research in space. To satisfy the needs of the watch connoisseur, the mechanical module of the Space Discovery is equipped with a vintage movement manufactured in the 1970s. The movement is self-winding and has the unusually high frequency of 5 HZ, or 36,000 bph, and it is beautifully decorated by one of the most prominent watchmaker there is – Mr. Svend Andersen.

Their latest timepiece, the Halda Race Pilot, is developed together with racing engineers and used by Formula 1 driver Marcus Ericsson of the Caterham team. The watch features innovative technology that truly makes a difference in professional racing. The Race Module is equipped with functions never made before in a watch such as information about 150 race tracks (length, altitude), an advanced Racing Chronograph measuring speed and Countdown according to FIA Formula 1 regulations. The mechanical module of the Race Pilot has a design inspired by the world of racing and is equipped with one of the best engines you can find; a caliber produced by one of the world’s most renowned manufacturers – ZENITH. The self-winding movement features a Power Reserve indicator and has been beautifully decorated with Côtes de Genève and Clous de Paris. The Halda racing watch is nominated for Watch of the Year 2014 by 0024 WatchWorld.

During this year’s Salong QP, a new model in the Race Pilot collection will be officially presented for the first time.

RJ-Romain Jerome Batman-DNA

Swiss luxury watch brand RJ-Romain Jerome joins forces with Warner Bros. Consumer Products, on behalf of DC Entertainment, to celebrate the 75th Anniversary of DC Comics’ Batman. Introducing a new legend to its Collaborations collection, RJ-Romain Jerome pays tribute to Gotham City’s Super Hero with a timepiece inspired by the Dark Knight: the Batman-DNA.

Gotham City’s vigilante, Batman has become an international cultural icon characterized by his strength, intellect and will to fight evil. Batman is an enigmatic Super Hero who does not sport any super powers but relies on science, technology and his superior intellect to assuage his war against crime. First appearing in the comic book Detective Comics #27 featuring artwork by artist Bob Kane and a script by Bill Finger, Batman has evolved throughout the years, forging his double identity along the way.

Inspired by Batman’s heroic personality, the aesthetics of the timepiece are an acknowledgment to the fantastic world that has been built around his character. Housed in a 46 mm black PVD-coated steel case, the black bezel has been machine-worked to showcase the bold and singular facets, recalling the angular contours of the “Batmobile.” The dial of the Batman-DNA mirrors the Gotham City Super Hero’s personality – raw, yet sophisticated.
An eye-catching Batman emblem applique, lacquered in black, is placed at the center of the dial. The legendary “Bat-Signal”, shines at night thanks to an engraving, filled with black Superluminova, which outlines the hero’s famous symbol. The rest of the dial has undergone RJ-Romain Jerome’s special “rough” finish, giving the watch a dark and edgy look.

The RJ logo applique is placed at 12 o’clock, allowing each detail of the dial to stand out and amaze the wearer each time he looks at the watch. A black Hornback crocodile strap has also been added to the timepiece, resembling Batman’s avant-garde leather gear.

Additionally, an engraving of the Batman emblem can be found on the back of each watch, placed on a “rough” finished medallion, accentuating the darkness of the timepiece. Limited to 75 pieces, the Batman-DNA celebrates the Dark Knight’s 75th anniversary.

Technical details
Model: Batman-DNA
Reference: RJ.T.AU.WB.001.01

Calibre RJ001-A
Mechanical self-winding movement
Frequency: 28,800 A/h
Jewelling: 23 jewels
Power reserve: 42 hours

Central hours and minutes

Ø 46 mm
Black PVD-coated steel
Batman medallion engraved on the case back with RJ’s “rough” finish
Bezel: Faceted Black PVD-coated steel, polished and satin-brushed
Water resistance: 3 atm (30 meters)

Batman applique filled with black mat lacquer
“Graphite” effect engraving filled with black Superluminova C1 “blue emission”
Polished RJ logo applied on the dial
Paws: Faceted, satin-finished black PVD-coated steel
Hands: Black satin-brushed hands with superluminova C1 “blue emission”

Black Hornback crocodile

Limited edition  
Limited edition of 75 pieces

Retail price  
USD 18,500.-/ CHF 14,950.- / EUR 14,950.-

Jaquet Droz - The Bird Repeater Openwork

Launched in 2012, the Bird Repeater by Jaquet Droz is an exceptional automaton watch that lays claim to a flavour of modernity and a legacy of tradition. This remarkable model reaffirmed the virtuoso expertise of Jaquet Droz, passed down from the 18th century and realized here in miniature. The following year, The Charming Bird watch marked the brand’s 275th anniversary with a new interpretation of the bird in an ultra-modern decorative setting and this time singing.

Now Jaquet Droz unveils a new version of The Bird Repeater – a more streamlined, contemporary-looking model that has nonetheless retained intact the animated features that made it a success: a duo of blue tit birds feeding their fledglings, the spreading wings, the tumbling waterfall and the hatching egg. It displays a poetic naturalism all the more surprising for the subtle aesthetic changes that the Jaquet Droz craftsmen have decided to make in the name of modernization.
Behind the sapphire crystal dial, the automated movement has been "exposed" so that the colored animations are more visible and the components of the black, anthracite and gray automaton are revealed.
This new depth and contrast in colour enhance the artisans’ work and accentuate every minute detail – the feathers, the eyes, the curve of the bird’s body, the flowing water – as well as the delicacy of the engraving and paint work.
The new Bird Repeater comes in white gold on a black alligator leather strap. It is the ultimate expression to date of the Jaquet Droz spirit, merging historic watchmaking tradition and avant-garde design.
The Bird Repeater Openwork is available as a limited edition of eight pieces, each one equipped with 508 components.
Technical details
Numerus Clausus of 8
Reference: J031034203

Jaquet Droz RMA88, minute repeater hand-winding mechanical movement, single barrel.
Indications: Off-centered hours and minutes
Jewelling: 69 jewels
Power reserve: 48 hours
Frequency: 18,000 v.p.h

18-carat white gold, 47 mm diameter
Height 18.40 mm
Individual limited serial number engraved on the case-back
Water resistance: No

Sapphire, black onyx subdial
Hand-engraved and hand-painted birds
Hands: 18-carat white gold

Rolled-edge hand-made black alligator leather strap. Alligator lining.
Buckle: 18-carat white gold folding clasp

Monday, October 27, 2014

Swiss Haute Horlogerie brand Audemars Piguet Unveils Hong Kong’s First Ever Heliport Advertising Campaign

Audemars Piguet has announced its exciting new collaboration with the leading commercial helicopter operator, Sky Shuttle. The dynamic synergy establishes many “firsts” for both companies embodying the same philosophies in their pursuit of excellence. Not only is this the first-ever outdoor advertising displayed at the Sky Shuttle heliport; on a bigger note, this is the first-ever heliport advertisement in Hong Kong. This innovative advertising idea exclusively features two Audemars Piguet logos on the connecting links between the eastern and western helipads of the Hong Kong Heliport. The hand-painted logos are in fact visible from many landmark buildings around the city such as the International Finance Centre (IFC) and International Commerce Centre (ICC) along the Victoria Harbour skyline. This advertisement will reach some 100,000 premium passengers every year travelling to and from Macau.
Utilization of this premium location demonstrates the brand’s strategic mindset and this partnership is indeed an embodiment of both mastery and pioneering spirit. The entire advertisement is hand painted by a team of experienced outdoor advertisement painters, strongly echoing the brand’s commitment to quality craftsmanship. Through this heliport partnership, Audemars Piguet manifests and reflects truly its brand philosophy - "To break the rules, you must first master them". 
Sky Shuttle Helicopters Limited is one of the world's leading commercial passenger helicopter operators, with over 25 years of history in providing premium cross-boundary helicopter shuttle services.  The company offers 54 flights a day, with flights operating every 30 minutes between Hong Kong and Macau, and 12 flights a day between Macau and Shenzhen. Each flights takes only 15 minutes. The new-generation, medium-twin engine Agusta Westland AW139 helicopters which Sky Shuttle utilizes, offers a smooth flight, in a spacious and comfortable cabin with large view windows for up to 12 passengers per flight.

Piaget Continues Its Support of the American Ballet Theatre

Piaget continued its partnership with the American Ballet Theatre (ABT) through its support of the esteemed dance company’s annual Fall Gala at the David H. Koch Theatre at Lincoln Center.  The event, titled Scarlett, White & Blue, attracted New York’s best and brightest including up-and-coming starlet, Olivia Munn, who dazzled in a black feathered ballerina-inspired dress paired with Piaget Rose earrings and matching ring. Sutton Stracke, co-chair of the event, opted for Piaget’s Limelight Garden Party “bird cage” inspiration necklace while ABT ballerina and first African American soloist, Misty Copeland, chose Piaget’s Limelight Couture Précieuse high jewelry cuff watch and dangling Piaget Rose earrings.
Olivia Munn
Other noteworthy attendees includedAlec and Hilaria Baldwin, Chris Noth, Deborah Ann Woll, Gina Torres, Taye Diggs, Lauren Hutton, Jean Shafiroff, Caryn Zucker and DJ and model Hannah Bronfman. Guests joined Larry Boland, president of Piaget North America, for a preview of the upcoming season’s ballet, followed by an elegant Scarlett-themed dinner in tribute to choreographer Liam Scarlett. Afterwards, guests enjoyed Piaget signature macarons and candy gems with entertainment by Ms. Bronfman.

Earlier this fall, Piaget and ABT celebrated the Theatre’s 75th Anniversary with the annual ABT “Stars Under the Stars” event in Los Angeles as well as the new ‘Extremely Piaget’ collection at the New York and Rodeo Drive flagships.

Popular Posts