With Vertalor, the Ateliers Louis Moinet are heralding a new era for their open-dial watches. The innovation lies in the movement architecture : the tourbillon and the barrel hang from distinctly raised gold bridges. To set the perfect aesthetic finishing touch, the eight curved hour-markers are themselves suspended above the dial. This airy construction fits remarkably well with the patented case, the dial adorned with “côtes du Jura” and the brand’s characteristic “Gouttes de Rosée” (dewdrop-tipped) hands. Moreover, Vertalor also introduces an openworked sunburst barrel cover, an enlarged fleur de lis, and a seconds hand with a star-shaped tip harking back to the Julius Caesar clock created by Louis Moinet in 1825.
Bell & Ross is writing a new chapter by launching the BR-X1, a chronograph defined as the “Ultimate Utility” watch housed in a case that is more sculpted than ever and as well ‘armored’ as the Bell X-1, the first supersonic flight plane to which its name refers. An extreme version of the BR-01, the BR-X1 in titanium features a ceramic shield with rubber inserts including an integrated rubber button grip insert button at 9 o’clock to ensure easy handling even with gloves. The skeleton movement powering this model features a distinctive X-shaped upper bridge, while the rubber strap is reminiscent of the woven canvas models worn by astronauts.
Heir to a tradition firmly rooted in artistic crafts right from the outset, Bovet loves to adorn its creation in splendid décor, notably Fleurisanne engravings or miniature paintings. These are either part of the initial design or may be added on demand. For the Year of the Horse, the brand offered two dials depicting this noble animal – a head painted on a mother-of-pearl background and a Barb horse painted on a background lacquered with a Chinese technique. The saddle, stirrups and harness of the latter are enhanced with gold leaf. The paintings are framed by patented convertible Amadeo cases serving to alternately transform the models into a wristwatch, a pocket watch or a table clock.
Partner of the Ballet Béjart Lausanne since 2013, Jaquet Droz has chosen the dial of the Petite Heure Minute to depict two emblematic ballet figures from the Rite of Spring choreographed by Maurice Béjart : “The Vulture” and “The Chief”. The original drawings are by Stéphanie Barba, a French artist who has had the opportunity of attending rehearsals of the Opéra de Paris ballet and various other major companies. In doing so, she has forged an impressive reputation for capturing dancers’ movements. Hand-painted reproductions enjoy pride of place on the extremely pure dials of these watches and are echoed on the back, engraved on the oscillating weight of the self-winding movements.
A first for Jaeger-LeCoultre : the Manufacture in the Vallée de Joux recently unveiled its first ladies’ musical watch. The Rendez-Vous collection launched in 2012 thus welcomed a self-winding minute repeater specifically designed for this model and equipped with patented trebuchet hammers striking crystal gongs connected to the sapphire crystal so as to produce amplified sounds, as well as a silent regulator that reduces peripheral sound disturbances. To enhance the slim, smooth design of this watch, the traditional repeater slide is replaced by an ingenious secured pushbutton. A new white gold ivy decor with snow-set leaves enhances the guilloché dial coated with translucent flinqué enamel.
For its 175th anniversary, Patek Philippe decided to pay a poetic tribute to its birthplace and enduring home – Geneva – by staging a series of picturesque scenes, notably including Lake Geneva (Lac Léman) and its shores that can be seen from the historical headquarters on the Rue du Rhône. To achieve this, the Manufacture has enlisted the talent of the finest artisans – a custom it has cultivated with remarkably constancy – to create around 40 commemorative timepieces in the Rare Handcrafts collection. The 20 or so wristwatches include the “Breeze and Storm” models fitted with dials showing the harbor in calm or rough competitions. They are hand-engraved in white gold using the low-relief technique and each requires up to 108 hours of fine workmanship.
Time for cinema with the Romain Jerome watch dedicated to Batman : the first Batman-DNA celebrates the 75th anniversary of the Dark Knight through the prevailing black color, the angular case reminiscent of the Batmobile, a dial bearing an applied bat insignia on a Superluminova background to symbolize the luminous Bat-Signal, a back personalized with an insignia engraved on a medallion, as well as a Hornback crocodile leather strap evoking the leather costume. Taken as a whole, this rugged yet sophisticated creation vividly reflects the enigmatic personality of the hero of Gotham City.