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10 watches for your Christmas list
Trend Forecaster

10 watches for your Christmas list

Thursday, 14 December 2017
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Mathilde Binetruy
Freelance journalist

“And yet, it moves.”

Galilée

From the 1998 World Cup, her first big event, to SIHH and Baselworld today, she reports from where the action is.

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6 min read

As we coast into Christmas, thoughts turn to the one gift we hope to find under the tree. Here are ten fabulous timepieces you may like to add to your list, while there’s still time.

Goooooooal!

Unless you hitch a ride to the North Pole with Santa, there will be no getting away from next year’s footballing extravaganza, as television networks all over the globe zoom in on every kick, pass and goal from the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia (June 14th to July 15th, in case you hadn’t heard). Get in on the action with the TAG Heuer Aquaracer Calibre 5 sport watch with its six must-have features: unidirectional rotating bezel, sapphire crystal, screw-down crown, SuperLuminova® markers and hands, double safety clasp and 300-metre water-resistance. So if your team gets knocked out after their first match, at least you’ll be able to drown your sorrows in the pool. Of course Italy got there first, having foundered during qualifications.

Aquaracer Calibre 5 © TAG Heuer
Aquaracer Calibre 5 © TAG Heuer
Diamond delights

While it has yet to be medically proven, we have grounds to believe that women are irresistibly drawn to jewellery shop windows, so please be aware that the Cartier Tank Anglaise watch will only accentuate symptoms. Its nine-sided crown in 18k pink gold is topped with a synthetic spinel, while 11 brilliant-cut diamonds adorn the silver-coloured dial. The case is a stylish match of steel and pink gold. Just what the doctor ordered.

Tank Anglaise © Cartier
Tank Anglaise © Cartier
The big attraction

The moon has an influence that’s hard to resist, some of it good – the human urge to surpass ourselves when we reach for the moon – and some not so good: we accuse our silvery satellite of messing with our sleep and playing with our nerves. It’s even said that more babies are born when there is a full moon. Following its phases can be one way to feel more in control. The moonphase display on the Rolex Cellini Moonphase offers astronomical precision for 122 years to come. Happy, now?

Cellini Moonphase © Rolex
Cellini Moonphase © Rolex
As long as it's green

If there is one positive trend right now, it has to be the global awareness that planet Earth needs our help. This new environmental conscience has left a trail of green in its wake, from the clothes we wear to the cushions we put on our sofa. Hence it’s tempting to see the H. Moser & Cie. Venturer Small Seconds XL Purity as a means of getting back to nature. Its cosmic green fumé dial with a delicate sunburst pattern is chlorophyll for the wrist.

Venturer Small Seconds XL Purity © H. Moser & Cie
Venturer Small Seconds XL Purity © H. Moser & Cie
May the force be with you

You could be holed up in a beach hut somewhere in Thailand, sipping apple brandy in a carnotzet deep in the Swiss countryside or desperately trying to connect to social media in China, news will still have reached you that the new Star Wars movie is coming to a theatre near you. So brace yourself for the inevitable Star Wars figurines, Star Wars socks, Star Wars pasta, Star Wars underpants, Star Wars popcorn… If you would rather have a watch to match the occasion, the all-over-black Panerai LAB-ID™ – Luminor 1950 Carbotech™ 3 Days – 49mm will bring out the Darth Vader in you. Don’t forget your lightsaber, that’s all.

LAB-ID™ – Luminor 1950 Carbotech™ 3 Days – 49 mm © Panerai
LAB-ID™ – Luminor 1950 Carbotech™ 3 Days – 49 mm © Panerai
Smooth as silk

Delicate by name and delicate by nature. The Premier Delicate Silk Automatic 36mm by Harry Winston is a fine example of watchmaking’s companion crafts, the métiers d’art. It is also the first artistic association of silk weaving and embossing. A poetic beauty which helps to preserve an endangered craft. This is the watch every self-respecting aesthete wants to own.

Premier Delicate Silk Automatic 36 mm © Harry Winston
Premier Delicate Silk Automatic 36 mm © Harry Winston
In at the deep end

How to have style? Patek Philippe answers this difficult question with an Aquanaut whose blue dial sits inside a rounded octagonal bezel with vertically satin-finished flats and chamfered polished flanks. 42mm of instant chic. A maritime air and 120-metre water-resistance make it the nautical watch par excellence.

Aquanaut Reference 5168G © Patek Philippe
Aquanaut Reference 5168G © Patek Philippe
High speed

It’s crazy, when you think about it. We spend the entire year chasing after time then on New Year’s Day we make the firm – and shortlived – resolution to slow down. Here’s a thought: what if we rolled the counters back to zero… in which case what better than the Omega Speedmaster Racing Master Chronometer, whose dial puts the accent on motor sports. This is one inspirational chrono: stainless steel, mat black dial with orange accents, and 18k white gold bevelled arrowhead indexes filled with white SuperLuminova®. This redesigned Moonwatch even has slightly enlarged counters for enhanced readability.

Speedmaster Racing Master Chronometer © Omega
Speedmaster Racing Master Chronometer © Omega
Geek, geek, geek, hurray!

Delete as appropriate: smartwatches are desirable, decadent, innovative, instantly obsolete, a threat to mechanical watchmaking, just another gadget. The one box we can all tick is that they have caught our attention. And that of leading watchmakers such as Montblanc, whose Summit smartwatch is a new direction for the brand. The design uses Minerva chronographs as a starting point, while the new 46-mm references aim to take Fine Watchmaking into the digital realm and, if the name can be believed, right to the very top.

Summit © Montblanc
Summit © Montblanc
Believe

Some watch enthusiasts don’t know where to draw the line. They know that there is no such thing as Father Christmas, they know they don’t have the cash in the bank, yet they want to believe magic can happen and end their wishlist with a watch that’s worth at least three times more than their home: the Richard Mille RM 70-01 Tourbillon Alain Prost. This mechanically complex, futuristically styled timepiece carries a price tag of €891,960/$815,000. Should it fail to turn up in your Christmas stocking: 1. Don’t blame your wife (if she had that kind of money, she’d spend it on herself); 2. Look on the bright side (here’s an opportunity to practice some mental arithmetic instead of leaving your watch to track how many miles you’ve pedalled); 3. Consider this thought from Growth Fetish, Australian academic Clive Hamilton’s book on consumerism: “People buy things they don’t need, with money they don’t have, to impress people they don’t like.”

RM 70-01 Tourbillon Alain Prost © Richard Mille
RM 70-01 Tourbillon Alain Prost © Richard Mille
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