To celebrate the 2020 Latin Grammy awards, Bulova unveils the Latin Grammy Gemini, a new tonneau-shaped quartz watch with an asymmetrical rose gold-tone stainless steel case, made in two sizes. Each watch showcases a curved black metallic crystal with a black dial and rose gold-tone accents.
The overall black hue of the new model continues from the dial into the black rubber strap. To emphasize the ongoing partnership between the Latin Grammys and Bulova, the watchmaker has emblazoned the Grammy gramophone logo on the front side of the strap, as well as on the caseback.
Bulova’s Latin Grammy Gemini is a three-hand quartz watch offered in two sizes, 40.5mm and 30.5mm. Both models sport a deployant buckle with water resistance to thirty meters. Price: $495.
History of Firsts
In addition to launching the Latin Grammy Gemini, Bulova is sponsoring an online series, via The Latin Recording Academy social media platforms, spotlighting the Latin Grammy ‘Best New Artist’ nominees. In addition to bios and a history of the artists, the series will feature special Bulova cameos such as the unboxing of a Bulova Latin Grammy watch.
Bulova will also gift this female 2020 Latin Grammy nominees one of its Rubaiyat watches during an even just prior to the awards ceremony, which is scheduled for November 19.
iW Presents the 2020 Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève Awards Ceremony.
Click below to watch the 2020 the 20th Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève awards ceremony live on iwmagazine.com at 12:30 pm this Thursday, November 12. The ceremony, which is online only this year and not open to the general public, takes place at the Theatre du Léman in Geneva.
The ceremony is in French but will be subtitled in English.
To view all the nominated watches for 2020, click here.
Available today, the watches will be offered on the Vortic website only, with Vortic pledging to donate $500 from the sale of each watch to the VWI. The non-profit organization trains and educates disabled military veterans.
“The volunteers with the VWI are teaching our war veterans the skills to restore and preserve historic watches while also providing a new purpose for our nation’s heroes,” says R.T. Custer, co-founder of Vortic Watch Company. “The increasing demand for vintage wrist watches and resurgence of American-made products has led to a skills gap in the trade of watchmaking. The VWI provides a valuable service to both our vets and the watch industry.”
Vortic’s Military Edition watches are created from antique pocket watches known as the “Navigator’s Watch.” Commissioned by the U.S Army Air Corps during World War II, the pocket watches were used by aviators to aid in navigation. Vortic makes the watches using original pocket watch movements restored by watchmakers from the VWI and other partners. The straps are made with vintage military canvas bags, classic black leather, or bomber jacket material.
“We sold out in one day last year and were able to donate $25,000 to the school. This year, we’re aiming higher with a goal to sell the watches and other items to raise $50,000,” says Custer. “We have 3,000 people on the waitlist for 65 watches. We’re all excited about the watches but everyone is thrilled to help our veterans and our future watchmakers.”
Check the Vortic website for details about the sale and to learn more about the Military Edition watches.
Patek Philippe this week launches a platinum-cased Grand Complication, the Ref. 6301P Grande and Petite Sonnerie, Minute Repeater with Jumping Seconds, the Geneva watchmaker’s primary technical watch debut for 2020.
With its black grand feu enamel dial, slanted Breguet numerals and relatively unadorned time and power reserve indications, the new watch understates its impressive and complex chiming mechanism. While eyeing a classically presented time display, a wearer can also place an ear to the 44.8mm case and enjoy a rarely orchestrated symphony of three gongs: a grande sonnerie (full strike), petite sonnerie (small strike) and an on-demand minute repeater.
Patek Philippe has also added an unexpected layer of complexity to the new watch by incorporating a jumping seconds indicator, prominently displayed at the 6 o’clock position on the dial. Patek Philippe looked to its Reference 5275 from 2014 for inspiration on this complication, as that chiming model boasted jumping hours, minutes and seconds.
Patek Philippe watchmakers, well-versed in designing and building the brand’s highly regarded and extensive range of chiming watches, developed the new caliber GS 36-750 PS IRM movement directly inspired by Caliber 300 used in the Patek Philippe Grandmaster Chime Ref. 6300 from 2014.
Unlike most chiming watches from Patek Philippe and elsewhere, the new watch’s chime control center is located below the 6 o’clock position rather than on the left side of the case. On this watch, the selector can be adjusted to petite sonnerie mode (left side), grande sonnerie (center) and silence (right). The user activates the minute repeater on request with the pusher in the winding crown.
Because Patek Philippe opted to place that strike mode selector at 6 o’clock on the case, the watchmaker needed to move its traditional small-diamond platinum case indicator to the side of the case at the 12 o’clock position.
Two series-connected twin mainspring barrels power the new caliber GS 36-750 PS IRM movement. One assures a power reserve of 24 hours for the striking mechanism while the second ensures a 72-hour power reserve for the movement.
All this chiming and timing occurs within a platinum case that may look familiar. Inspired by the Ref. 5370 split-seconds chronograph Patek Philippe presented in 2015, the case features rounded contours, a concave bezel and a slightly cambered sapphire crystal.
In summary, the new Patek Philippe Ref. 6301P Grande Sonnerie includes these six complications:
Movement power-reserve indicator
Strikework power-reserve indicator
In addition, the new watch offers unique technical achievements that have resulted in the Geneva watchmaker earning three patents, which Patek Philippe describes below:
Isolation of the grande sonnerie in the silence mode (Patent CH 704 950 B1). In the silence mode, this mechanism totally isolates the grande sonnerie from the power flow and eliminates energy consumption.
Selection of the strike work mode (Patent CH 706 080 B1). This mechanism enables the selection of the strike work mode (petite sonnerie, grande sonnerie, silence) with a single lever and a single slide switch. Two slide switches were formerly required for this operation.
Jumping display with a jumping seconds wheel (Patent CH 707 181 A2). This innovative mechanism for jumping displays does not require springs and levers but instead uses wheels and a release lever that instantaneously unblocks the wheel train every second, and features a coiled return spring as the only power element. The advantage of this system is that it makes energy consumption easier to regulate and control.
Patek Philippe will offer the new Ref. 6301P Grande Sonnerie on a shiny black, hand-stitched alligator leather strap with square scales, secured with a fold-over clasp. The price for the limited production watch is available upon request.
Specifications: Patek Philippe Ref. 6310P Grande and Petite Sonnerie, Minute Repeater with Jumping Seconds
Movement: Patek Philippe Caliber GS 36-750 PS IRM, manual winding, minute repeater with 3 classic gongs, grande sonnerie, petite sonnerie, jumping small seconds at 6 o’clock, power reserve indicators for the movement (72h) and for the strike work (24h), frequency of 25,200 bph (3.5 Hz), power reserve of 72 hours, strike work power reserve of 24 hours.
Dial: Grand Feu black enamel with glazed finish, gold applied Breguet numerals, 18-karat gold dial plate, white gold leaf-shaped hands with luminescent coating.
Case: 44.8 mm by 12mm platinum, humidity-and dust-protected only (not water-resistant), interchangeable solid and sapphire crystal case backs.
Between the COVID pandemic, wildfires on the West Coast, hurricanes in the South, and other turmoil, we are living through exceptionally difficult times. Our daily lives, whether professional or personal, have changed in fundamental ways—particularly when it comes to in-person events. With all the current restrictions in place, companies have had to be creative to not only promote their brands but the causes they believe in too.
I received an email from Blancpain recently inviting me to attend a virtual event organized by Oceana. With the tagline “Protecting The World’s Oceans,” Oceana, based in Washington, D.C., is the largest international organization dedicated solely to ocean conservation.
Although it was only possible to attend the event online, it was clear that Oceana put in the extra effort. I then received from Andrew Handschin, general manager of Blancpain USA, a lovely package with bread, patés, specialty butter, a festive bottle of champagne, and an invitation to enjoy the live event from home.
Then, a link to attend the online “Oceana Virtual New York Gala” and silent auction was sent via email.
While the spirit, excitement, and inspiration of an online occasion cannot compare to an in-person event with hundreds of people sharing the same space, the message of “Protecting our oceans and future” was still conveyed passionately.
The Oceans & Hayek
Blancpain is famously involved with causes focused on saving the ocean, its eco-systems, and its species. At the helm of this involvement is Blancpain CEO, Marc A. Hayek, who is an enthusiastic scuba diver and a vocal advocate of ocean conservation. He has even received several accolades for his efforts.
Blancpain’s connection to marine conservation is further emphasized by having marine scientist, deep diver, and underwater photographer Laurent Ballesta as an ambassador of the brand. Blancpain’s Lettres du Brassus magazine frequently publishes Ballesta’s incredible photography and stories as he travels the globe.
The fascination with the ocean is not new to Blancpain. It was the first watchmaker to develop a professional diving watch in the form of the Fifty Fathoms in 1953—beating out the Rolex Submariner as “the first” by a few months. Since then, Blancpain has always had a spiritual affinity with the oceans of the world.
As a result, it was only natural for Blancpain to partner with Oceana, assisting with the organization and publicity of the “Oceana Virtual New York Gala” event. The night’s hosts were Susan and David Rockefeller Jr. while speakers included Jane Fonda, Ted Danson, and Sam Waterston. The evening also featured performances by Sting, Nile Rodgers, and Chic.
Among all the powerful words that were said that night, the ones that struck me the hardest were “Save the oceans, feed the world. Restoring the ocean could feed one billion people with a healthy seafood meal every day.” Followed up by “Do something.”
These are strong statements, and I invite you to visit www.oceana.org to discover more about the organization’s projects and how you can help.
“Do something” rings true here, no matter the size of the effort—every bit helps, whether spreading awareness or making small contributions.
Once a year in my town, you can go for three hours on a Saturday morning to help clean up the beach by picking up plastic bags, bottles, and other garbage. It’s a fantastic community event where you not only learn about ocean conservation but where you can also meet other like-minded people.
Oceana and Blancpain are big organizations that strive to remind us that preserving the health of our oceans is critical and there is a need to change our habits and attitudes before it’s too late. One person at a time can make a big difference.
I am thankful that I attended this beautiful night, which served to highlight that awareness, creativity, unity and commitment can make a big difference in our lives, our children’s lives, and future generations.
Watch companies have been collaborating with artists and designers for years, producing animated timekeepers with distinctive, non-traditional dials, eye-catching engravings and even unusual case finishes.
Brands as diverse as Hermès and G-Shock tout their artistic connections with special editions that typically offer playful, aesthetic variations to well-known collections. The partnerships take many forms, from one-off fund-raisers for charities to long-term collaborations that morph into full-fledged new collections.
Let’s take a look at a few of the latest watch-artist collaborations we’ve seen.
Hublot and Orlinski
This artistic collaboration represents one of Hublot’s most successful, with multiple editions of Hublot’s Classic Fusion Orlinski reaching collectors of both Hublot watches and Pop Art, Orlinski’s domain.
Casual and serious art observers are aware of Richard Orlinski’s brightly colored beasts, including his “Wild Kong” gorilla sculpture in Cannes and his crocodiles in Miami. He and Hublot have teamed on their successful series of angular designs with light-reflecting faceted sapphire crystals for several years.
Just recently, Hublot released a new white-themed Classic Fusion Orlinski series – with gold and diamonds – just in time for the holiday season.
These are 40mm King gold or titanium models, with and without diamond pave bezels and lugs, all attached to a white rubber strap. Prices start at $11,500.
Movado and Lubomirski
Movado has teamed with Alexi Lubomirski for its newest Artist Series dials. The photographer provided Movado with four photographs (Light, Water, Illumination and City Scenes) that will grace the dials of the Movado Museum dial with vegan straps in dark grey, yellow and navy blue.
Each steel 40mm watch ($595) also comes with a vegan reusable watch pouch and packaging made from recyclable materials.
A portion of proceeds from all watches sold (at Movado.com) will be donated to Alexi’s preferred charities Concern Worldwide and the Humane Society of America. Another collection with Lubomirski is expected for Spring 2021.
Rado Designer Series
Rado has released special designer watches for 2020, the latest releases from an annual tradition for the high-tech watchmaker known for its ceramic cases and bracelets and its contemporary design focus.
Rado is working within its True Square collection to offer three models designed in collaboration with the Italian duo FormaFantasma, the British designer Tej Chauhan and Japanese duo YOY. All three have used the automatic True Square Collection as their Swiss watch canvas.
The Rado True Square Formafantasma brings us a partially enclosed dial that refers to pocket watches with protective cases.
The Japanese design duo YOY offers a contemporary interpretation with the True Square Undigital. YOY shows only analog hands within the shape of a typical digital, possibly smart dial.
Award-winning British industrial designer Tej Chauhan brings us flowing shapes, high-tech ceramic and bold colors to evoke “futuristic visions of pop culture.”
Prices for the Rado True Square design collaborations: $1,800 (TrueSquareTejChauhan), $2,550 (True SquareFormaFantasma) and $2,350 (True Square YOY).
Ateliers deMonaco and Luca Stradivari
Produced in partnership with the architect and designer Luca Stradivari, a direct descendant of famed luthier Antonio Stradivari, Atelier deMonaco launches its Admiral Chronographe Flyback Stradivari, available in four limited editions of eighty-eight pieces (steel, rose gold, white gold and yellow gold).
The 42mm flyback chronograph displays a dreamlike dial where elegant hands pass over matching markers and the autograph of the architect and designer.The caseback shows the in-house dMc-760 Calibre, an eye-catching movement beautifully finished with intricate circular satin finishing, perlage, Côtes de Genève and chamfering. Price: CHF 18,000 (approximately $19,600.)
Zenith continues to place its Defy collection on the cutting edge of high-end, serially produced horology with the addition of the Defy Classic Carbon, which finds the automatic Zenith Defy Classic cased in solid carbon fiber and connected to the wrist with a fully integrated carbon fiber bracelet.
The carbon fiber packaging means that the new model weighs a wispy sixty-five grams, about half the weight of an equivalent 41mm Defy Classic with a titanium case and bracelet. Like other Defy Classic models, Zenith fits the watch with its Elite skeletonized movement with a silicon escape wheel and lever.
While carbon fiber is not unheard of today as a case material in high-end watchmaking, the addition of a carbon fiber bracelet is rare and seen only on pricey, extremely limited editions such as Bulgari minute repeater or a Richard Mille offering.
Zenith explains that the new bracelet required new expertise at cutting, molding and milling the carbon fiber so that it highlights its layers, known technically as strata. The Le Locle watchmaker is touting this knowledge as another aspect of its ability to create serially produced watches infused with new materials (at least within watchmaking) and avant-garde techniques.
The lightness and the marbled, layered look of a carbon fiber bracelet looks unusual and feels unexpectedly light on the wrist, especially when it clasps a highly complicated automatic watch. While I haven’t worn the new Zenith Defy Classic Carbon, my experience briefly wearing Bulgari Octo Finissimo Minute Repeater Carbon in 2018 was educational in this regard.
The material is warmer and almost friction-free on the skin, quite unlike the sensation when wearing a steel watch or a gold watch. As an added bonus, the layering of the carbon fiber within such construction results in a different visible pattern every time. As a result, each Zenith Defy Classic Carbon will exhibit a unique appearance.
Zenith also offers a black rubber strap with a carbon and titanium folding buckle for those who prefer a more familiar attachment to their watch. While the price difference between the rubber strap and the carbon fiber strap is high, only one model will suffice for those in search of the truly unusual, and potentially ground-breaking, with their haute horology.
The Zenith Defy Classic Carbon with carbon bracelet is price at $19,500. The model with the black rubber strap is priced at $11,600.
Specifications: Zenith Defy Classic Carbon
References: 10.9001.670/80.M9001 (carbon bracelet) and 10.9000.670/80.R795 (rubber bracelet)
Movement: Zenith Elite 670 SK, automatic, 28,800 VpH, 48-hour power reserve, special oscillating weight with satin-brushed finish.
Case: 41mm carbon with sapphire caseback, water resistant to 100 meters, 65-gram total weight (watch with carbon bracelet).
Dial and functions: Openworked with hours and minutes in the center, central seconds hand, date at 6 o’clock, hour-markers and hands ruthenium-plated, faceted and coated with Super-LumiNova SLN C3.
Bracelet: Full carbon. Also available on rubber bracelet, with carbon folding buckle.
Citizen takes its light-powered, GPS-connected wristwatch technology underwater this week as the Japanese watchmaker debuts two Promaster dive watches set for the first time with the Citizen Cal. F158 Eco-Drive Satellite Wave GPS movement.
The new watches are being billed by Citizen as the first light-powered dive watch with GPS satellite capabilities. The newest Promasters are also fully compliant the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) standard for dive watches and feature water resistance to 200 meters.
To use the new models beneath the waves, a diver first presses the push buttons at 2 o’clock and 4 o’clock simultaneously, which sends the watch into Dive mode. All functions, except time display, will then stop in order to prevent erroneous user operations. It will not enter into Dive mode if the charged battery amount is insufficient.
Both watches are cased with Citizen’s proprietary Super Titanium, which Citizen then enhances with a surface-treatment hardening technology called Duratect MRK. While both models measure 47mm in diameter, the blue dialed option (model CC5006-06L) is finished in a glossy black hue using a DLC layering technique, which enhances scratch resistance.
Sea of features
These are professional-level dive watches, echoing much of the Promaster collection, which features a range of high-spec dive, aviation and racing watches. Citizen has ensured that each model boasts a unidirectional bezel with knurled notches, a screw lock crown, sapphire crystal, charge capacity display function and light-level indicator.
And, as is required for ISO compliance, the Eco-Drive Satellite Wave GPS Diver 200m dials are easy to read with large, luminous indexes and hands.
Citizen’s proprietary light-powered Eco-Drive Cal.F158 will operate for about seven years on a full charge – even without a light source. This insures that the various high-tech functions will operate uninterrupted.
Thus, the watches will continue to receive location and time information anywhere in the world using GPS satellite signals. This data will automatically correct the time and world calendar. Even without GPS satellite function, the watch is rated to an accuracy of ± five seconds per month. The wearer can also manually adjust the crown to change city and calendar, if desired.
For experienced or aspiring divers, Citizen has emblazoned the dial ring on both watches with the abbreviated names of eight famous diving locations, including Sharm El Sheikh, Maldives, Phuket, Great Barrier Reef, Fiji, Hawaii, Galapagos and Fernando de Noronha.
Citizen supplies each watch with a urethane band and an extension band for wet suit use.
Prices: $1,395 (Super Titanium case with black DLC coating and blue dial) and $1,350 (Super Titanium case and green dial).
Junghans toughens its Meister collection with the new Meister S Chronoscope, a sportier version of the best-selling retro-inspired chronograph.
Known for its convex day-date dial and concave subdials, the Meister Chronoscope here arrives with a larger case (45mm), stronger water resistance (200 meters), a screw-down crown, screwed steel caseback and a thickened thick sapphire crystal doubly coated for serious anti-reflection properties.
The new Junghans Meister S Chronoscope boasts a new case that cuts a contemporary profile. The case’s new, enhanced crown protection and beveled bezel set it apart from the earlier, retro-styled Chronoscope designs.
Junghans offers two dial options. One of the two steel-bracelet models takes its sportier designation most seriously with a tachymeter scale framing an anthracite (grey) dial set with raised and numbered markers.
A second steel-bracelet model offers a tachymeter-free visage on a green-black dial with un-numbered, raised markers. Even without the tachymeter scale and with its dressier matte/polish case finish, this model asserts a hint of sportiness through its red chronograph hands.
The third design, the only Meister S Chronoscope made in limited production (of 888 units), also offers red accents, but arrives on black PVD, brushed steel case attached to a red-stitched synthetic black rubber strap. This model features the same grey dial with tachymeter as offered on one of the two bracelet watches, but with red-accented hands and two red markers.
Junghans has emblazoned its name in raised letters to the underside of the strap. This feature, according to the brand, will provide “an elaborate solution for airing of the synthetic rubber strap, guaranteeing optimum wear comfort.”
Prices: $2,595 (either model on steel bracelet) and $2,795 (black PVD case with rubber strap, an 888-piece limited edition.)
Movement: Automatic ETA-7750-based caliber J880.1 with a power reserve of up to 48 hours, date and weekday (also available in English), chronograph.
Case: 45mm x 15.9mm steel or black PVD-coated, convex sapphire crystal with anti-reflection coating on both sides, 7-times screwed stainless steel back with Junghans star artwork, screwed crown and tube, 200 meters of water resistance.
Dial: Matte anthracite, model 027/4023.44 with green-black-effect lacquer, model 027/4024.44 with tachymeter scale, hands and indices with SuperLuminova. Hands coated with luminous substance in red and/or white.
Strap: Stainless steel bracelet with safety folding clasp and fine adjustment, synthetic rubber strap with leather inlay and stainless steel folding clasp in black PVD-coating (on model 027/4025.44 with red accent strap, limited to 888 watches).
Prices: $2,595 (either model on steel bracelet) and $2,795 (black PVD case with rubber strap, an 888-piece limited edition.)
Alpina this week revives a regulator dial design with the new Alpiner Regulator Automatic, a successor to the Geneva-based watchmaker’s Avalanche Regulator, which debuted in 2003.
As is the case with all regulator dials, the hands rotate within separate subdials, all dominated by the central minutes hand. Alpina echoes its first regulator watch from by setting the subdials amid vertical Côtes de Genève stripes. However, Alpina has replaced the original’s baton hour markers with triangle-tipped markers lined with luminescent material.
Alpina’s choice of dial décor is meant to enhance the dial’s visibility.Traditionally, watchmakers apply a Côtes de Genève (Geneva Stripes) finish not to dials, but to movement bridges and rotors. The stripes distribute reflected light from the dial, which reduces reflections.
Now in a round 45mm steel case, the new Alpiner Regulator Automatic sets its hour subdial at 10 o’clock and its seconds subdial at the 6 o’clock position.
While Alpina offers a broad range of vintage-styled watches, here the watchmaker offers a contemporary look to what is a classical regulator dial layout.
For the United States, collection includes two models with blue dials, which are available on a brown calfskin strap or a steel bracelet. A third model, offered as a limited series of 883 pieces, features a blue dial on a black calfskin strap with red stitching (pictured above).
Alpina has placed its ETA-based AL-650 automatic movement inside the new Alpiner Regulator Automatic. This differs from Alpina’s earlier regulator watches, many of which were powered by manual-wind movements. And unlike many of those earlier models, the new Alpiner Regulator Automatic features a close, engraved caseback rather than a clear sapphire back.
The watch, available on us.alpinawatches.com, is nicely priced at $1,895 to $1,995, depending on the version.
With this launch, Alpina continues its support of the National Park Foundation as an official partner. For every Alpiner Regulator Automatic purchased through the United States website, Alpina will donate $100 to the parks.