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Twelve watches revealed at Swatch Group’s “Time to...
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Twelve watches revealed at Swatch Group’s “Time to Move”

Tuesday, 21 May 2019
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Fabrice Eschmann
Freelance journalist

“Don't believe all the quotes you read online!”

“In life as in watchmaking, it takes many encounters to make a story.”

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7 min read

By presenting their latest releases actually inside the Manufacture (except Glashütte Original which located to one of Geneva’s luxury hotels), Swatch Group’s prestige brands were able to highlight the singularity of their watches while making clear the complexity inherent to production.

Glashütte Original Senator Chronometer Tourbillon - Limited Edition

From the Saxon town of Glashütte, Germany, Glashütte Original has released its first ever watch to combine a flying tourbillon with a stop-seconds mechanism, a zero reset and a minute detent, enabling the wearer to set the time with precision. Two patents have been filed for this construction. Pulling out the crown stops the tourbillon and also the seconds hand mounted on its cage. Pulling the crown again advances the seconds hand to zero. The minutes hand can then be set, index by index. This 25-piece limited edition is presented in a 42mm platinum case.

Senator Chronometer Tourbillon - Limited Edition © Glashütte Original
Senator Chronometer Tourbillon - Limited Edition © Glashütte Original
Glashütte Original PanoInverse - Limited Edition

A characteristic feature of German watchmaking, the three-quarter plate of this PanoInverse is brought to the front of the movement so that the sprung balance can be admired on the dial side. Equally distinctive are the double balance cock – also typical of the German tradition – and a magnificent “butterfly bridge”. In addition to indications of the hours, minutes and small seconds, this PanoInverse features a power-reserve display and stop-seconds. Limited edition of 25 pieces.

PanoInverse - Limited Edition © Glashütte Original
PanoInverse - Limited Edition © Glashütte Original
Omega Speedmaster Apollo 11 50th Anniversary Limited Edition

On July 21st 1969, Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin stepped off the Eagle to become the first humans to set foot on another world. It was also during this legendary mission that the Speedmaster became the first watch ever to be worn on the Moon. To commemorate this event, and the 50th anniversary of Apollo 11, Omega has released this new version, limited to 6,969 pieces. The 42mm case in stainless steel combines with a bezel in polished 18k Moonshine™ gold, an exclusive patent-pending alloy that is paler than traditional yellow gold. The small seconds subdial at 9 o’clock is laser-engraved. Master Chronometer movement.

Speedmaster Apollo 11 50th Anniversary Limited Edition in Stainless Steel © Omega
Speedmaster Apollo 11 50th Anniversary Limited Edition in Stainless Steel © Omega
Omega De Ville Trésor 125th Anniversary Edition

In 1894, the Brandt brothers revolutionised the market with the launch of a 19-ligne calibre. Mass-produced using revolutionary methods, the brothers named their new movement “Omega”. Its success was such that in 1903, what had been the Louis Brandt company became OMEGA Watch Co. For the movement’s 125th anniversary, Omega has released a special-edition De Ville watch with multiple unique details, including a red enamel dial and, on the caseback, a yellow gold medallion filled with red enamel and surrounded by damaskeen engraving. Master Chronometer movement.

De Ville Trésor Édition 125e Anniversaire © Omega
De Ville Trésor Édition 125e Anniversaire © Omega
Blancpain Fifty Fathoms Automatique

Blancpain returns to its Fifty Fathoms, the blueprint for the modern dive watch. Launched in 1953, the 2019 edition retains its predecessors’ sporting and stylish nature while introducing the high-tech touch of a blue ceramic dial in an elegant red gold case, measuring 45mm in diameter and water-resistant to 300 metres. It houses Caliber 1315 whose gold oscillating weight is visible through the sapphire caseback – an exploit for a dive watch.

Fifty Fathoms Automatique © Blancpain
Fifty Fathoms Automatique © Blancpain
Blancpain Villeret GMT Date

After introducing the first complete calendar to the Villeret collection in 2018, and after associating the GMT function with complex calendars, Blancpain again spotlights this useful complication, this time with a simple date display. A lesson in classicism as practiced by Blancpain, this newcomer to the Villeret collection is driven by Caliber 5A50, an automatic movement with four days of power reserve and a silicon balance spring. The links on the “Mille Mailles” gold bracelet, which premiered in 2010, are 3/100th of a millimetre smaller on each row.

Villeret GMT Date © Blancpain
Villeret GMT Date © Blancpain
Breguet Classique Tourbillon Extra-Plat Squelette 5395

Breguet has risen to the challenge of presenting a skeletonised version of its Calibre 581 whose exceptionally thin profile (3mm) already inspired the firm to rethink the construction of the tourbillon by having the titanium cage engage with the geartrain directly rather than through a pinion at its base. Also, the silicon escapement has a space-saving angled form. Breguet is the only manufacturer to propose this rarely-seen structure in serial production. Hollowing the gold plate and bridges to show off this mechanical anatomy is to walk a fine line between removing as much metal as possible and preserving the technical properties of the components.

Classique Tourbillon Extra-Plat Squelette 5395 © Breguet
Classique Tourbillon Extra-Plat Squelette 5395 © Breguet
Breguet Reine de Naples Jeux d’Azur

Rumour has it that this watch was made at the behest of the group’s chairwoman. And what a modern Reine de Naples it is, in steel with a blue lacquer dial to match its denim strap. For night-time legibility, the hands glow blue in the dark. Turning the watch over reveals a sapphire back and, through it, Calibre 591C with its solid gold guilloché oscillating weight. The choice of anti-magnetic silicon for the escapement and balance spring enhances precision and reliability.

Reine de Naples Jeux d’Azur © Breguet
Reine de Naples Jeux d’Azur © Breguet
Jaquet Droz Magic Lotus Automaton

Jaquet Droz is the last brand to keep alive the tradition of automaton watches. Think back to the Bird Repeater in 2012 or the Charming Bird in 2015, the only wristwatch anywhere to feature a singing bird. This latest invention, for which four patents have been filed, presents the most intricate dial ever from the Manufacture. On demand, a disc representing a pond turns for four long minutes As it does, it triggers two animations: a koi carp flicks its tail as it appears to dive in and out of the water, while the stone at the centre of the lotus blossom changes whenever it disappears then reappears. At 8 o’clock, a dragonfly slowly alights on a waterlily leaf. Pure magic.

Magic Lotus Automaton © Jaquet Droz
Magic Lotus Automaton © Jaquet Droz
Jaquet Droz Grande Seconde Skelet-One Ceramic

Last year’s skeletonised Grande Seconde broke new ground by being the first to do away with the dial. This new interpretation adds a modern slant courtesy of the ceramic case, measuring 41.5mm in diameter. Connoisseurs with an eye for detail will note that the movement plate extends all the way around the edge of the case, thus dispensing with the casing ring. This new construction allows the geartrain to be fully suspended, attached only to the skeletonised bridges that traverse the movement.

Grande Seconde Skelet-One Ceramic © Jaquet Droz
Grande Seconde Skelet-One Ceramic © Jaquet Droz
Harry Winston Histoire de Tourbillon 10

For its tenth and last chapter, Harry Winston’s Histoire de Tourbillon saga goes out with a bang, with four tourbillons making one revolution in 36 seconds and connected by three differentials. The imposing case – 53.30mm across and 39.10mm thick – is proposed in platinum, red gold or white gold. The platinum version is a one-off; the gold versions are limited to 10 pieces each. A decade-long adventure, in the company of CompliTime, comes to a suitably impressive conclusion.

Histoire de Tourbillon 10 © Harry Winston
Histoire de Tourbillon 10 © Harry Winston
Harry Winston Premier Precious Micromosaic Automatic 36mm

Since its creation inj1989, the Premier collection has been Harry Winston’s chosen vehicle to showcase the métiers d’art. For this latest incarnation, the brand’s artisans looked to Ravenna in Italy for inspiration. Capital of the Roman Empire in the fifth century then of Byzantine Italy in the eighth century, the town has elevated the art of mosaic to an unprecedented level. Four hand-crafted models spring to life through fragments of translucent or opaque glass in vibrant colours. After firing to fuse the glass to the base, the surface is polished to make it shine like a precious stone. Cased in 18k white gold or 18k pink gold, each version is limited to 30 pieces.

Premier Precious Micromosaic Automatic 36mm © Harry Winston
Premier Precious Micromosaic Automatic 36mm © Harry Winston
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