Return of a revolutionary
Progressive and revolutionary: the new Royal Oak Offshore Chronograph collection from Audemars Piguet dazzles with its formal aesthetics and technological sophistication.
Twenty years have passed since the first Royal Oak Offshore shook up the market for classic gold watches. Its hallmark: the octagonal case and an oversize 42 mm diameter. In 2014, Audemars Piguet unveils an even sportier and more masculine version of the trailblazing original: in six different models and with new elements like the pushbuttons and crown in scratch-resistant black ceramic. The first models are now available in 18 K pink gold, stainless steel, or a vintage safari look. All with the characteristic Mega Tapisserie-pattern dial. Despite the unorthodox exterior, Audemars Piguet opted for traditional mechanical watchmaking on the inside of the case. The movement is assembled and decorated by hand, even in the models without a see-through sapphire glass back.
Neptune’s loyal companions
They are the perfect companions for underwater adventurers: the latest models in IWC’s 2014 Aquatimer generation.
“If you plan to remain successful, you have to go on developing,” said IWC Schaffhausen to itself, and promptly relaunched its legendary diver’s watch family. The new Aquatimer collection impresses with its sophisticated technical functionality, a patented bracelet quick-change system and two fascinating first-time features: the use of bronze as a case material and the haute horlogerie combination of a perpetual calendar with a large digital date display. IWC will use the four special editions in the collection to finance its commitments to the Charles Darwin Foundations research station and to the Cousteau Society, which works to protect the world’s oceans and towards the long-term preservation of the Galapagos Islands’ fragile ecosystem.
The Altiplano 38mm 900P from Piaget blends state-of-the-art technology with ingenious, ultra slim haute horlogerie.
To mark its 140th anniversary, Piaget decided to set a new record for slimness and designed the world’s thinnest mechanical hand-wound movement, measuring just 3.65 mm. A dazzling technological achievement, it called for a complete and uncompromising rethink of movement architecture. The case and movement are bonded together as an inseparable unit, the case back also serving as the bottom plate of the movement, and the 145 individual parts are reduced to an absolute minimum. The bridge, mounted visibly on the dial side, a cantilevered barrel and the decentralized hour and minute display save further precious millimeters. Despite the extreme miniaturization, aesthetics are still writ large: the four models in gold have a distinctive and distinguished elegance.
The Hommage Double Flying Tourbillon with its hand-decorated guilloche dial from Roger Dubuis stands for luxury, design and exquisite craftsmanship.
Roger Dubuis has dedicated 2014 to an overhaul of the Hommage collection, which marked the Geneva-based manufacturer’s entry to the pantheon of haute horlogerie back in 1995. Since then, the company has created a furor with extravagant appearances at the Geneva watch salon. The newly revived Hommage collection embodies the fifth element in the spectacular Roger Dubuis brand world. It embraces an exclusive series of automatic timepieces and chronographs. The masterpiece of the collection is the Hommage Double Flying Tourbillon in pink or white gold with a hand-chased guilloche dial. Ticking away inside the case is a hand-assembled caliber comprising 452 individual parts. Despite its imposing diameter of 45 mm, the state-of-the-art wristwatch radiates an aura of discreet elegance. To use Roger Dubuis’s own words, the new Hommage collection is “simply perfect”. As a sign of his approval, all models bear the signature of Monsieur Dubuis himself below the Hallmark of Geneva.