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Category: Features

Omega Seamaster

The Twenty Year Bond

Omega Seamaster

Over the years, James Bond has been constantly reinvented to adapt to changing political zeitgeists, technological advancements, and fashion trends, making it possible for him to be a household name that has transcended generations.

He was initially only found as a character within the pages of Ian Fleming’s books, but since then, there have been multiple on screen adaptations, beginning with the 1954 special for the CBS show Climax! Mystery Theatre.

It was a low budget, hour-long rendition of Casino Royale, starring American actor Barry Nelson. In the episode, Nelson was immaculately dressed and sported perfectly coiffed hair, but his similarities with all the other Bonds ends there.

The mediocrity and cheesiness of this episode made it entirely eclipsed by Dr. No, the 1962 flick given credit for launching James Bond into the status of pop and style icon, and introducing the audience to the villains, well-cut suits  and beautiful women that the Bond franchise is associated with today.

 

A change in time

While many things have remained consistent throughout the years of 007’s existence, there have been several noticeable changes; from driving a Sunbeam Alpine, wearing Rolex Submariners, and asking for martinis, “Shaken, not stirred.”, the spy is now more known for getting around in Aston Martins and chugging Heineken, all the while donning Omegas on his wrist.

This particular connection with Omega is arguably the longest relationship James Bond has ever had with anything or anyone (agent M excluded), but, as James Bond aficionados will tell you, this is not in adherence to Fleming’s horological preferences.

The author had initially described the spy to own a Rolex Oyster Perpetual with an expandable steel bracelet, but the costume designer for Goldeneye, Lindy Hemming, wanted something better suited for “a naval man, a diver and a discreet gentleman of the world”.

Because of how most of the naval men she knew swore by Omega, and considering the company’s history with the British military – specifically their involvement with the Royal Navy Divers of the 1960s – it only made sense to make Omega 007’s watch brand of choice.

So in the 1995 release of the movie, James Bond appeared with a new watch (an Omega Seamaster) and a new face (Pierce Brosnan).

Like all those that had preceded them, every timepiece during the Brosnan era had been modified to become espionage friendly; new functions included laser beams, grappling hooks, and remote detonators, and they all, of course, eventually played unwitting roles in the successful accomplishment of his missions.

But all this changed once Daniel Craig began to introduce himself as James Bond.

Wanting to portray a 007 less reliant on highfaluting gadgetry but still as impeccably dressed as ever, Craig’s rendition of the character had Bond fighting his battles with more orthodox weapons, but still maintaining Omegas as part of his uniform.

 

Time to celebrate 

In 2002, Omega decided to celebrate the 40th anniversary of James Bond on the silver screen. Simultaneous with the release of Die Another Day, they launched a limited edition commemorative timepiece.

Needles to say, the timepiece was a was a huge hit, so releasing limited edition 007 watches soon became a tradition.

These commemorative timepieces have conspicuously featured the “007” gun logo and other iconic images from the franchise; but the ones that have been launched simultaneously with the movies not only had these, but also the movie name and, usually, the same functions as the spy’s watch.

But to mark the release of the 24th James Bond film SPECTRE, Omega has decided to do things a little differently by not only releasing a limited edition variation, but also the exact model worn by James Bond.

 

James Bond Watches

 Though the exact replicas of 007’s watches haven’t always been available to the public, his wrist accessories have always been fawned over throughout his entire career with the agency. Here’s a closer look at the ones that have been identified with him, along with their modifications and some of the commemorative timepieces Omega has released alongside them.

 

Dr. No (1962)

Rolex Submariner Ref. 6538

Note: While most sources agree that the Rolex timepiece used by Sean Connery in the different Bond films is the Submariner ref. 6538, some contest that and say that he used the 6200, 6538A, or 5510

 

From Russia with Love (1963)

Rolex Submariner Ref. 6538

 

Goldfinger (1964)

Rolex Submariner Ref. 6538

 

Thunderball (1965)

Rolex Submariner Oyster Perpetual Ref. 6538

 

Breitling Top Time Ref. 2002, case no. 984343

Added gadget: Waterproof geiger counter

Note: this timepiece was specially modified by the prop department and is different from the standard Breitling Top Time

 

Casino Royale (1967)

Rolex GMT Master

 

On Her Majesty’s Secret Service (1969)

Rolex Pre-Daytona Chronograph Ref. 6238

Added Gadget: Compass

The seconds hand was painted bright red because it was supposed to function like a  compass needle, and the watch was supposed to be a compass.

Rolex Submariner Oyster Perpetual Ref. 5513

 

Live and Let Die (1973)

Hamilton Pulsar ‘P2 2900’

 

Rolex Submariner Oyster Perpetual Ref. 5513, case no. 2’683’776

Added spy gadgets: electromagnet bullet deflector, circular saw

 

The Man with the Golden Gun (1974)

Rolex Submariner Oyster Perpetual Ref. 5513

 

The Spy Who Loved Me (1977)

Seiko LC Quartz digital wristwatch DK001, 0674-5009

Added spy gadgets: pager; built-in telex, prints out messages like a miniature teletype

 

Moonraker (1979)

Seiko M354 Quartz Liquid Crystal Memory-Bank Calendar

Added spy gadgets: reel of explosives that are connected by a small length of wire to the watch, which acts as the detonator

 

For Your Eyes Only (1981)

Seiko Alarm-Chronograph Duo-Time H357-5040

Added spy gadgets: Digital message read-outs and a two-way radio/transmitter

 

Seiko Professional Diver’s 600m Ref. S60583

 

Octopussy (1983)

Seiko Sports 100 pseudo-analogue G757

Added spy gadgets: Radio direction finder that worked with a homing device planted in a fake Faberge egg

 

Liquid Crystal TV Seiko t001-5019

Added spy gadgets: Video feed receiver

 

A View to Kill (1985)

Seiko Diver’s 150m Ref. SPW001

 

Seiko Quartz Chronograph wristwatch SPR007

 

Seiko Quartz two-tone wristwatch

 

The Living Daylights (1987)

Tag Heuer Professional Night-Dive PVD 980.031

 

Tag Heuer Professional 200 Meters 980.013

 

License to Kill (1989)

Rolex Submariner Oyster Perpetual Ref. 16610

 

Goldeneye (1995)

Omega Seamaster 300M Quartz Professional

  • Blue dial
  • Blue bezel
  • Stainless steel bracelet
  • Date function
  • Caliber: Omega 1538 Quartz precision movement. Battery end of life indicator
  • Power reserve: 27/36 months
  • Domed anti-reflective, scratch resistant sapphire crystal
  • Water resistant up to 30 bar

Added spy gadgets: remote detonator, laser beam

 

Tomorrow Never Dies (1997)

Omega Seamaster 300M Chronometer 2531.80.00

  • 41mm stainless steel case
  • Stainless steel bracelet with deployant security clasp
  • 12-sided unidirectional blue bezel with engraved graduated scale
  • Blue dial with wave motif
  • Helium release valve at 10 o’clock
  • Screw-in crown
  • Water resistant to 30 bar
  • Caliber: Omega 1120
  • Self-winding chronometer with rhodium-plated finish
  • 44 hour power reserve

Added spy gadgets: Integrated detonators activated by turning the watch dial

 

The World is not Enough (1999)

Omega Seamaster 300M Chronometer 2531.80.00

Added spy gadgets: Grappling hook, high-intensity lighted bezel

 

Die Another Day (2002)

Omega Seamaster 300M Chronometer 2537.80.00

Added spy gadgets: remote detonator (replacing the helium valve, activated by turning the bezel), laser activated by the crown.

 

Commemorative Timepiece:

Omega Seamaster 300M Chronometer 2537.80.00

  • “007” gun logo on dial, inscribed beneath “Seamaster Professional Chronograph
  • “40 Years of James Bond – Limited Series” and series number inscribed on caseback
  • Unique bracelet design
  • Special packaging
  • 10,007 pieces

 

Casino Royale (2006)

Omega Seamaster 300M Co-Axial 41mm 2220.80.00

  • 41mm steel case
  • Chronometer
  • Date
  • Blue dial
  • Blue unidirectional rotating bezel
  • Screw-in crown
  • Helium escape valve
  • Water resistant up to 30 bar
  • Caliber: Omega 2500
  • Self-winding chronometer with rhodium plated finish
  • Co-Axial Escapement
  • 48 hour power reserve

 

Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean Big Size

  • 45.5mm steel case
  • Rubber strap
  • Domed scratch-resistant sapphire crystal
  • Black dial
  • Caliber: Omega 2500
  • Self-winding chronometer
  • Co-Axial Escapement movement with rhodium-plated finish
  • 48 hour power reserve

 

Commemorative timepiece:

Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean Casino Royal Limited Edition

  • 007 logo on the seconds hand
  • 5mm steel case
  • Black rubber strap
  • “007” gun logo in orange on the central second hand
  • Title of the film on the dial
  • Caseback embossed with Casino Royale logo
  • 5,007 pieces

 

Quantum of Solace (2008)

Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean

  • 42mm stainless steel case
  • Steel bracelet
  • Matte black dial
  • Water resistant up to 60 bar
  • Caliber: Omega 2500
  • Self-winding chronometer
  • Co-Axial Escapement
  • Rhodium plated finish
  • 48 hour power reserve

 

Commemorative timepiece:

Omega Seamaster Diver 300M Bond 007 Collecter’s Piece

  • Two size options: 41mm or 36.25mm
  • Black dial with 007 logo motif
  • Red 50 on bezel (an idea by Bond co-producer Barbara Broccoli)
  • 007 gun-barrel design encircling a “bullet” on the back of the watch.
  • Co-Axial caliber 2507
  • 11,007 pieces for the 41mm
  • 3,007 pieces for the 36.25mm

 

Skyfall (2012)

Omega Seamaster Aqua Terra Ref. 231.10.39.21.03.001

  • 38.5mm steel case
  • Blue dial decorated with Teak Concept pattern
  • Transparent caseback
  • Water resistant up to 15 bar
  • Caliber: Omega 8500
  • Self-winding movement with Co-Axial Escapement
  • Free sprung balance
  • 2 barrels mounted in series; automatic winding in both directions to reduce winding time
  • Bridges and oscillating mass decorated with exclusive Geneva waves in arabesque
  • 60-hour power reserve

 

Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean, Ref. 232.30.42.21.01.001

  • 42mm steel case
  • Black dial
  • Water resistant up to 60 bar
  • Caliber: Omega 8500

 

Commemorative Timepiece:

Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean 600M “Skyfall” Limited Edition

  • 42mm stainless steel case
  • Screw and pin bracelet with diver’s clasp engraved with “007” logo
  • Matte structured black dial
  • “007” logo as 7 o’clock index
  • “SKYFALL 007” engraved and black varnished on the rotor
  • 5,007 pieces
  • Special presentation box

 

SPECTRE (2015)

Seamaster 300 Omega Master Co-Axial 41mm

  • 41mm stainless steel case
  • “007” gun logo engraved on bracelet strap holder
  • “SPECTRE” film title on caseback
  • Ceramic bi-directional bezel with LiquidMetal® 12 hour scale
  • 5-stripe black and grey NATO strap
  • “Lollipop” central seconds hand
  • Broad arrow hour hand
  • Rhodium plated hands with vintage (blue emission) coating of Super-Luminova
  • Recessed triangular hour markers
  • Caliber: Omega 8400
  • Resistance to magnetic fields up to 15000 gauss
  • Bridges and oscillating weight decorated with Geneva waves in arabesque
  • 7,007 pieces available

 

Commemorative timepiece

Omega Seamaster Aqua Terra James Bond Limited Edition

  • 5 mm stainless steel case
  • Stainless steel or blue coated nylon fabric strap
  • Caseback engraved with “ANTI-MAGNETIC>15’007 GAUSS”, LIMITED EDITION
  • Lacquered blue dial with Bond family coat of arms
  • Yellow transferred “>15’007 Gauss” with the “007” gun logo
  • special presentation box with strap changer tool
  • 15,007 pieces available

 

Omega Seamaster AquaTerra James Bond watch
Omega Seamaster AquaTerra James Bond caseback
 

This 2019, Omega celebrates the 50th anniversary of Her Majesty’s Secret Service with special edition of the Seamaster Diver 300M which you can read about here.

Patek journey with Lucerne

Lucerne, the premier purveyor of Swiss luxury timepieces in the Philippines, was established by Yao E Chiu in 1982 in Ali Mall, Cubao. It began as a small watch shop, but has since expanded to several stores, including two stand-alone boutiques of Patek Philippe.

Emerson Yao, one of Yao E Chiu’s sons who took over the business in 1988, says that the turning point for the company was when he and his brother, Ivan Yao, decided to open a boutique in Makati in the early 1990s.

They had decided that to differentiate themselves from other local watch retailers, they would focus on Swiss luxury timepieces that were yet to become available to the Philippine market. Their expansion to Makati was a strategic move, because back then, it was the only place in the country where luxury goods could be found.

One of the brands the brothers knew they had to bring in to be taken seriously in this segment of the market was Patek Philippe.   And in 1998, they introduced the manufacture to the Philippines.

After a decade, Lucerne and Patek Philippe opened the watch manufacture’s first stand-alone boutique in the country. Located in Makati’s Greenbelt 5, it was among the manufacture’s first independent boutiques throughout the Asia-Pacific region.

A front shot of the Patek Philippe boutique in Greenbelt 5, Makati.

A waiting area where clients may sit and discuss with the staff.
Patek Philippe’s first stand-alone boutique in the Philippines.

 

 

Lucerne managing directors Emerson and Ivan Yao with Patek Philippe president Thierry Stern and honorary president Philippe Stern.
(Left to right) Lucerne managing director Emerson Yao, Patek Philippe honorary president Philippe Stern, Patek Philippe president Thierry Stern, and Lucerne managing editor Ivan Yao at the 175th anniversary celebration of the manufacture in Singapore (2014). 

A few years after the launch of its first boutique, Patek Philippe opened its second one in Shangri-La Plaza, which was a testament to its growing following in the country. 

Emerson and Ivan Yao with Patek SEA General Deepa Chatrath and Swiss Ambassador Andrea Reichlin.
(Left to right) Lucerne managing director Emerson Yao, Patek Philippe Southeast Asia General Manager Deepa Chatrath, Swiss Ambassador Andrea Reichlin and Lucerne managing director Ivan Yao at the Patek Philippe boutique opening in Shangri-La Plaza in 2016.

By 2017, women had become a notable part of the Manufacture’s local clientele. Together with Lucerne, they hosted an intimate event called the Mechanical Art for Ladies.

Patek Philippe Southeast Asia General Manager Deepa Chatrath delivered a presentation to attendees, discussing Patek Philippe’s longstanding history of catering to the tastes of discerning women. She also emphasized how they had always made sure their women’s timepieces were crafted independently from that of the men’s, as opposed to the more common practice of simply shrinking the dimensions of men’s watches.

During the exclusive ladies event, bags of designer Bea Valdes, who made a name for herself by incorporating traditional Filipino craftmanship into her work, were also on display. It was a fitting venue to display the work because similar to how Patek Philippe strives to keep Genevan decorative skills alive in their workshops, she aims to preserve Filipino artisanal skills.

Those at the event had the opportunity to take a closer look at the creations of Ms. Valdes, as well as the extensive women’s collections of Patek Philippe.

Ivan Yao with Deepa Chatrath, Filipina bag designer Bea Valdes and Patek Philippe regional sales manager David Chan.
(Left to right) Lucerne managing director Ivan Yao, Patek Philippe Southeast Asia General Manager Deepa Chatrath, Filipina designer Bea Valdes and Patek Philippe regional sales manager David Chan at the Mechanical Art For Ladies event held at Shangri-La At The Fort.

In 2018, Patek and Lucerne delighted watch enthusiasts yet again with the launch of a knowledge series about the perpetual calendar. The Manufacture’s full collection of timepieces featuring the grand complication, including models that were yet to be released, were put on display, while an expert watchmaker gave participants a chance to examine a perpetual calendar’s inner workings.

Ms. Chatrath presented the grand complication’s technical aspects; the various ways in which it can be displayed on a dial; and the Maison’s history of producing movements with perpetual calendars and the meticulously decorated cases that have housed them. 

 

Patek Philippe perpetual calendar timepieces.
A few of the Patek Philippe Perpetual Calendar timepieces on display at the knowledge series event.

 

A man observing the parts of a Patek Philippe complication.
A participant of Patek Philippe’s perpetual calendar workshop examines the components used in the complication.

Now in their 21st year of partnership, Lucerne looks forward to helping sustain and increase Patek Philippe’s local following. Among the plans the two have for the near future is relocating the boutique in Greenbelt to occupy a larger space.

Patek Philippe and Lucerne continue to pride themselves in being family-run businesses with haute horology at the center of what they do. And in the years to come Philippine watch enthusiasts can rest assured that the partners will remain uncompromising when it comes to delivering only the finest of timepieces. Whether it be in this generation, or the next.

Before telescopes, probes, and all kinds of space technology existed, man had only his eyes to observe and make sense of the world around him. It was this unquenchable sense of wonder that served as fuel for individuals to reach great heights in the field of space and science. We’re honoring that extraordinary drive with watches that have been deeply inspired by all things outer space.

 

Patek Celestial Moon Age
 

Patek Philippe Celestial Moon Age 6102P 

Leave it to Patek Philippe to create a dreamlike masterpiece with an out of this world display of mathematics. The Celestial Moon Age 6102P’s deep blue dial is made up of several rotating sapphire crystal discs that chart the celestial bodies and the moon’s phases. And as the dial slowly rotates, the stars simultaneously change as well. If set correctly, the cardinal points can help locate a portion of the sky that’s visible from Geneva. Two skeletonized feuille hands indicate the hours and minutes of solar time which is the timekeeping system that everybody else in the world uses, and a red crescent tipped white hand points to the date on the inner bezel.

 

A. Lange and Söhne Richard Lange Perpetual Calendar Terraluna
 

Lange & Söhne RICHARD LANGE PERPETUAL CALENDAR “Terraluna”

Through the caseback of the watch you’ll catch a glimpse of its inner workings and three important discs: the earth, the sky, and the moon. The discs are designed to show you the moon (which also has a moon phase indicator) and sky from the perspective of the Northern Hemisphere, with the balance wheel acting as the sun. When the earth does a full rotation once every 24 hours, it’s easy to find the time of any location on the globe. How? With the 24-hour ring that surrounds the plate. All you have to do is make a straight line from the North Pole to any country, and from there you can already figure out the time in that location.

 

Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Grande Tradition Tourbillon Celeste
 

Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Grande Tradition Tourbillon Céleste

The revamped Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Grand Tradition model lets you live your life according to the stars. The latest Jaeger-LeCoultre timepiece uses a time frame of 23 hours, 56 minutes, and 4 seconds—using the distant stars, rather than the sun, as a reference point in timekeeping. The celestial dial displays the Northern hemisphere, and on its outer ring are constellations of each zodiac, along with the corresponding symbols associated with the signs. To know which point in time you are currently standing in, all you have to do is look at the small triangular gold marker. Adding the finishing touches to the timepiece are the rose gold tourbillon and the glow from its luminescent hour markers and constellations.

 

Rolex Pepsi Meteorite Dial
 

Rolex GMT-Master II Pepsi Meteorite Dial

While the GMT-Master II Ref. 126719BLRO still has the signature GMT-Master II  40mm case, blue and red “Pepsi” cerachrom bezel, and COSC-certified automatic calibre 3285 movement, this model is delivered with a white gold oyster bracelet and stunning, one-of-a-kind meteorite dial. If you look closely through the cyclops magnifier, you can even see bits of the meteorite’s grain.

 

 

IWC Schaffhausen Portugieser Siderale ScafusiaIWC Schaffhausen Portugieser Siderale Scafusia
 

IWC Portugieser Sidérale Scafusia

On the front, nothing seems out of the ordinary. You see a typical IWC Portugieser with an added constant-force tourbillon, a power reserve and sidereal time indicator. The sidereal time, also called “star time”, is a system commonly used by astronomers to locate the same stars in the same position every night. When turned over to its caseback, the stellar magic begins. Immediately grabbing hold of your attention is a rotating astrological map that can be customized according to which part of the sky you’d like to have framed. The yellow circle you see is called the horizon and within it are the stars visible during the day or night. The back features yet another sidereal time indicator, found on a white outer ring with a red triangular marker and a dot on top. Within it is a black inner ring which turns out to be a solar time indicator. On top of the chart is a perpetual calendar that begins counting the days from 1 to 366, and located right next to it is a leap year indicator.

 

Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch
 

Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch Professional family

Accompanying Buzz Aldrin to the historic moon landing in July 1969 was his trusty Omega Speedmaster. It was because of this key event that the timepiece was given the title “Moonwatch.” But even prior to the lunar landing, the Speedmaster Moonwatch had gone through countless journeys and expeditions with astronauts on six Apollo missions. In 1964, NASA was on the hunt for a chronograph that could be used for future space missions. Omega and three other contenders took a chance and sent each of their top performing watches to go through, and hopefully pass, NASA’s rigorous tests. Some of these tests involved environmental shifts, drastic changes in temperature and pressure, and vibration frequencies. Due to its robustness and precision, it was a no-brainer for NASA to have the Moonwatch be part of the official equipment for all piloted space missions. Up to this day, the Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch is the only watch certified by the federal space agency for astronauts to use on an extravehicular activity.

 

Girard-Perregaux Cosmos
 

Girard-Perregaux Cosmos 

The Cosmos was the grand highlight of Girard-Perregaux’s “Earth to Sky” collection back in SIHH 2019, and it does an exceptional job at showing the art and beauty in science. This timepiece brings a tourbillon, a sky chart, and world complications all onto one three-dimensional dial. Displayed at your 3 o’clock is a titanium globe with raised continents which has a second time zone indicated by the 24-hour scale found near the equator. Opposite to it is a deep blue globe with a luminescent, laser-engraved sky chart that does a full rotation equivalent to one sidereal day and displays zodiac constellations that’s customizable on request. The local time is displayed on the top of the dial, and the tourbillon with a black PVD treated titanium bridge is located at the bottom of the dial. The case housing these has been carved from bead blasted titanium, and is protected by curved sapphire crystal that acts like a telescope. 

Watches for a Cause

IWC Schaffhausen Big Pilot’s Watch Single Piece Ref. IW500923
 

Sometimes, the luxury watch industry isn’t all the glamour and pizzazz as it appears to be. When manufacturers aren’t busy brainstorming on and creating the next best watch, they find the time to give to a cause that’s much bigger than themselves. There are, after all, real people behind these big watch houses. While making donations in the form of cash is the most common gesture, a lot of watch houses opt to take the route that they know best: creating unique or limited pieces and auctioning them offsatisfying collectors, philanthropists, and of course, beneficiaries alike. Here are a few watches for a cause from just this year.

 

Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Selfwinding Chronograph luxury watches for a cause
 

Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Selfwinding Chronograph Ref. 26338PT.OO.1220PT.01

If you’re a big fan of Cirque du Soleil, then you’re sure to have heard of the “One Night for One Drop” event that happens every year, where they do a special performance for one night only in Las Vegas. Every cent spent goes to the One Drop Foundation that helps communities in grave need to have sustainable access to safe water. 

Audemars Piguet put this self-winding chronograph up for auction at the very same event, and just like the Cirque du Soleil performance, all its proceeds go straight to the foundation. Even alongside some other items like sought-after cars and special trips to dream destinations, this one-of-a-kind watch managed to stand out all the same, with its blue subdials against the purple Grande Tapisserie dial, visible through the solid sapphire crystal. It’s all encased in a platinum case, accompanied by either a platinum bracelet or a leather bracelet in the same shade of the subdials.

 

IWC Schaffhausen Big Pilot’s Watch Single Piece Ref. IW500923 luxury watches for a cause IWC Schaffhausen Big Pilot’s Watch Single Piece Ref. IW500923
 

IWC Schaffhausen Big Pilot’s Watch Single Piece Ref. IW500923

If you pay attention to Hollywood news, you might remember that earlier this year, actor and IWC ambassador Bradley Cooper wore the unique Big Pilot’s Watch Single Piece to the opulent Academy Awards ceremony—and it’s not just for show!

The very same watch was auctioned off and its proceeds were donated to the Antoine de Saint-Exupéry Youth Foundation. It goes to helping the Arrimage association in France whose mission is to help visually impaired children how to “read” or “see” drawings through touch, as well as create drawings themselves. It’s no coincidence that the first ever tactile art book is “The Little Prince” and that this watch’s 18-carat gold caseback has a quote from the book engraved on it, “It is only with the heart that one can see rightly.” It wasn’t hard at all to find an owner for this watch, what with it not only being connected to a famous watch house, but also a famous book and, of course, a famous actor.

Ferdinand Berthoud Chromomètre FB 1 - Night Star luxury watches for a cause

Ferdinand Berthoud Chromomètre FB 1 – Night Star

Only Watch is an event that’s held every two years, auctioning off unique watch models from several different watch brands whose 99% of profits go to the research into Duchenne muscular dystrophy, the more severe version of muscular dystrophy that cuts an individual’s life off as soon as their late teenage years.

Ferdinand Berthoud is one of those luxury watch brands that contributes to the cause, with the Night Star. Its case is not only titanium—it’s sandblasted anthracite-ceramised titanium. A mouthful, right? It means that this isn’t any regular titanium; it’s four times stronger than titanium. And with how anthracite is the densest form of coal, it’s also how the titanium got its nice shade of gray that matches nicely with the frosted black dial. The hands and numerals are stand out against the dark colors like stars in the night sky thanks to its Super-LumiNova coating, making the name of the watch quite apt.

 

Breguet Type 20 luxury watches for a cause

Breguet Type 20

Breguet brings back one of their beloved classics, the military-issued pilot’s watch “Type 20,” for the Only Watch event. If you know what the original Type 20 from the 50s looked like, then you’re sure to see the likeness. From the luminescent Arabic numerals and hands to the big onion crown right down to the historic Valjoux 235 movement, the watch house has honored the old flyback chronograph well, with a few aesthetic updates here and there. Like everything else in this list, there’s only one piece made available—to the dismay of watch enthusiasts everywhere—with even an engraving on the back that says, “Pièce Unique.”

 

Patek Philippe Grandmaster Chime Ref. 6300A-010 luxury watches for a cause Patek Philippe Grandmaster Chime Ref. 6300A-010
 

Patek Philippe Grandmaster Chime Ref. 6300A-010

For this year’s Only Watch event, Patek Philippe rendered their most complicated watch, the Grandmaster Chime, in stainless steel. Besides the unusual case material, the hand guilloched hobnail pattern on the rose gold dial as well as the text “THE ONLY ONE” on the second time zone subdial make this piece tastefully unique.

Apart from getting this absolute beast of a watch, which is already enough motivation for a lot of Patek Philippe fans, the owner and his chosen guest will also get to visit the Patek Philippe workshops and museums, as well as have lunch with the president of the watch house, Thierry Stern. We’re sure we’re not exaggerating when we say this will be one of the most sought after pieces in the auction house.

 

Hublot Classic Fusion Tourbillon Sapphire Orlinski luxury watches for a cause   Hublot Classic Fusion Tourbillon Sapphire Orlinski statue
 

Hublot Classic Fusion Tourbillon Sapphire Orlinski

Hublot is no stranger to charity donations, and it’s certainly not the first collaboration with artist Richard Orlinski either. So it’s no surprise that they joined forces to create a unique timepiece for Only Watch.

In the transparent sapphire case that incorporated the signature design of the artist sits the movement, the tourbillon cage, and the power reserve. The bezel is made of white gold, and is set with 54 baguette-cut, light blue topazes. The smooth, rubber strap is in the same shade, keeping in theme with the Only Watch color scheme. It’s also the same color of the Wild Kong sculpture, also made by Orlinski, that holds the sapphire watch box wherein the luxury watch itself is displayed. And if the timepiece and sculpture weren’t enough, the owner of the piece also gets to meet the artist himself at his gallery in Paris.

Diving Into An Adventure

omega luxury watch
Omega Seamaster Professional Ploprof 1200M Ref. 227.60.55.21.03.001

The adventurous are no strangers to the unpredictability of Mother Nature; being prepared is imperative. One of the many facets of preparedness comes in the form of having reliable equipment. To a number of veteran divers, the diving watch lands among the most important pieces.

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International Women’s Month might have already ended, but that doesn’t mean we stop thinking about women’s luxury watches. Here’s a list of watches we think women absolutely need in their collection to elevate their style, because jewelry needn’t be their only accessories.

A. Lange & Söhne Little Lange 1 Moon Phase Ref. 182.030 luxury watches

The Work Watch
A. Lange & Söhne Little Lange 1 Moon Phase Ref. 182.030

When you’re working those long hours, six days a week, it can be a little too easy to forget what day of the month it is. A. Lange & Söhne has their patented outsize date on almost all of their timepieces, making it easy to keep track of your meetings and deadlines with a glance.

Longines Hydroconquest Ref. L3.781.4.96.6 luxury watches

The Beach Watch
Longines Hydroconquest Ref. L3.781.4.96.6

Everyone needs their dose of Vitamin Sea once in a while. What better to go with your beach outfit than a practical but beautiful dive watch? We adore Longines’ Hydroconquest line, which was elegantly designed to withstand the salty waves in style.

Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Self-winding Chronograph Ref. 26231ST.ZZ.D010CA.01 luxury watches

The Sporty Watch
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Self-winding Chronograph Ref. 26231ST.ZZ.D010CA.01

Whether your daily exercise is jogging on the treadmill or stretching on your yoga mat, it’s important that you have a watch that can keep up with you. This Royal Oak Offshore model, with its trusty chronograph and comfortable rubber strap, can do just that.

Vacheron Constantin Harmony Dual Time Ref. 7800S/000R-B140 luxury watches

The Travel Watch
Vacheron Constantin Harmony Dual Time Ref. 7800S/000R-B140

Sometimes we just want to pack up our bags and travel to our dream destination. But when wanderlust strikes, you still have to keep track of things in your home or workplace. Dual time watches, such as the Harmony Dual Time, can make it happen, even when you’re the other side of the world.

Omega De Ville Ladymatic Ref. 425.30.34.20.05.001 luxury watches

The Everyday Watch
Omega De Ville Ladymatic Ref. 425.30.34.20.05.001

When you’re too busy to even think about which watch to match with your daily getup, you’ll need a reliable timepiece that can go with almost anything. We think stainless steel and a monochromatic dial is the way to go for this kind of dilemma, and this watch can fill in that role, no problem.

IWC Schaffhausen Portofino Automatic 37 Ref. IW458101 luxury watches

The Weekend Watch
IWC Schaffhausen Portofino Automatic 37 Ref. IW458101

Going to a family reunion, or a Sunday morning brunch with your friends? You’ll need something that will match your casual tan leather bag. This Portofino has a light brown alligator strap, its tone matching the details on the face of the watch, tying your relaxed and informal outfit together nicely.

Rolex Lady-Datejust Ref. 279174

A Rolex
Rolex Lady-Datejust Ref. 279174

Like we said in our original article for men, every collection demands a Rolex, even those of women’s. With its iconic design and sheer popularity, you’ll be hard-pressed to find someone who doesn’t know the brand. Their Lady-Datejust collection was made exclusively for women—here’s the piece from that collection that we love the most.

Breguet Reine de Naples Ref. 8939BB/6D/J49/DD6D women's luxury watches

The Dress Watch
Breguet Reine de Naples Ref. 8939BB/6D/J49/DD6D

For those parties where everyone is somebody, you’ll want something that will go with your designer gown and pearl jewelry. We’re sure this timepiece from Breguet will turn heads on the red carpet. Get ready for the crowd to snap portraits of you with your wrist!

Hublot Gold White Pavé Ref. 361.PE.2010.RW.1704 women's luxury watches

The Gemset Watch
Hublot Gold White Pavé Ref. 361.PE.2010.RW.1704

Because diamonds are a girl’s best friend. Need we say more? Hublot has a long list of diamond-studded watches, which includes this stunning piece. It has a whopping 1517 diamonds set in the brand’s very own 18K King Gold.

 

Patek Philippe Nautilus Ref. 7118/1200A women's luxury watches

The Heirloom Watch
Patek Philippe Nautilus Ref. 7118/1200A

If your daughter doesn’t want your wedding gown or the family ring, you’ll have to pass something else down that will be just as valuable. For that purpose, there’s nothing better than the classic and timeless Nautilus. Made to last lifetimes, you might very well see this watch on your granddaughter’s wrist.

It’s no surprise that, having practiced the art of horology since the 18th century,  Swiss luxury watch manufacturer Girard-Perregaux has created and continues to create some of the world’s most awe-inspiring timepieces. The dedication to such a fine craft is evident in their beloved models: the Art Deco inspired Vintage 1945, the classic 1966, the iconic Laureato, and of course, their signature Tourbillon with Three Golden Bridges. 

Where It All Began

Girard-Perregaux’s story begins with Jean-Francois Bautte who founded the manufacturing company in 1791. His company was later acquired by newlyweds Constant Girard and Marie Perregaux. Afterwards, the couple established a manufacture in La Chaux-de-Fonds, Switzerland. With just their luck, in 1889, they won a gold medal at an exposition in Paris with their signature model—The Tourbillon with Three Golden Bridges—cementing the manufacture’s reputation in the world of high horology.

By the second half of the 19th century, the company was on a mission to widen their market. With great help from François Perregaux and Henri Perregaux, they were able to attract wealthy Japanese and South American clients who took an interest in their tourbillons, minute repeaters and other grande complication models.

Meanwhile, the beginning of the 20th century saw Girard-Perregaux dominate numerous international expositions, and eventually gained an uncontested privilege as a result. Because of this, they were selected to be a permanent member of the Jury, which excluded them from competing in international events.

Constant Innovations

Over the course of the 1960s, the manufacture was hard at work to create a watch with a high frequency movement. And so in 1971, they showcased the first quartz watch produced in Switzerland—The Gyromatic Chronometer HF. Its high frequency of 32,768 Hz became the standard among watch manufacturers. Hence, the Gyromatic, along with the Laureato, became the talk of the town throughout the 70s and 80s.

In 1994, the company partnered up with Ferrari to create a Chronograph line. The partnership lasted a decade, with four collections released. A few years after, Girard-Perregaux attempted to replicate its Tourbillon with Three Golden Bridges onto a wristwatch. Successful in learning the traditional skills to recreate the model, they came out with several variations of the timepiece. From that point on until the 2000s, the company kept creating models, mostly taking inspiration from its older timepieces.

Making A Comeback

In 2013 Girard-Perregaux made a groundbreaking development: it presented the first watch that was equipped with a constant force escapement. And for this reason it won the most prestigious award, the Aiguille d’Or of the Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève.

Most recently, at SIHH 2019, the company released their latest novelties, drawing inspiration from the cosmos. And in February of this year, a new model was added to the latest collection: The Quasar. Named after the celestial object, the Quasar grabbed attention with its fully transparent sapphire case, skeleton dial, and signature three bridges.

The Laureato’s Evolution

An entirely separate spotlight should be given to one of Girard-Perregaux’s best-sellers: the Laureato. The timepiece was first conceived in 1975 as a luxury sports watch with a hexagonal bezel and linked bracelet. It was reproduced in 1984, with the addition of mechanical movements and added astronomical indicators. Throughout the years, it was reimagined in different ways, most recently at this year’s SIHH, with the introduction of three Laureato Absolute models featuring different complications.

  • Laureato 1975
  • Laureato 1984
  • Laureato 2016
  • Laureato Absolute 2019
  • Laureato 1975

  • Laureato 1984

  • Laureato 2016

  • Laureato Absolute

Truly, Girard-Perregaux’s long and illustrious history is a testament to their passion for haute horlogerie as they continually develop techniques and innovations that cement their place in the watchmaking world. And with its recent relaunch in the Philippines, now is the perfect time to reawaken your love for this manufacture and its horological masterpieces.

Timezone watches. Despite being at the top of every list detailing the watches every aficionado wants to get their hands on, travel and world timers are some of those complications that notoriously confuse watch beginners.

And that’s perfectly okay, because time zones are, in themselves, inherently confusing. UTC? GMT? Daylight savings? Yeah. We thought so.

You’ve probably heard of these sought-after timepieces called by different names: time zone watches, GMT watches, world timers, travel timers…. These various terms can be a lot to wrap your head around. After all, they are some of the more elaborate complications in the luxury watch industry. And there are so many of them.

So, simply, what are they, and why should they be a part of your collection?

Fundamentally, their functions are all similar; that is, to tell what time it is in multiple geographic locations. How they do it, however, is quite different from each other.

Travel Timers

Travel timers, also known as GMT watches, are timepieces that let their wearer tell the time in one other location through the use of a rotating bezel and a third hand, commonly called the “GMT hand.”

“GMT” stands for Greenwich Mean Time, which is the time established at the Royal Observatory in Greenwich, London—making it a time zone. Alternatively, Coordinated Universal Time (UTC), is a time standard, although most English-speaking countries use the two interchangeably. Ironically, the latter is more commonly used in aviation, which is the industry wherein the GMT watch became popular.

Whichever time the GMT hand points to will serve as the hour hand for the second time zone. For example, on this Rolex GMT-Master II, one can easily see how the times for both locations are set at 10:10. The travel timer is especially useful for those who travel frequently, and move from one time zone to another.

  • Rolex
  • Tudor
  • Baume et Mercier
  • Rolex GMT-Master II “Batman” Ref. 126710BLNR

    This black-and-blue GMT watch, dubbed as “Batman,” is perfect for those who think the “Pepsi” was a little bit too colorful.

  • Tudor Black Bay GMT Ref. M79830RB-0002

    Ever imagined the “Pepsi” with a leather strap? Tudor brings your imagination to reality with their rugged “Tiera de Siena” brown leather strap.

  • Baume et Mercier Clifton Ref. 10316

    Rather than a rotatable bezel, or even just a separate hour ring on the dial, this watch prefers to display the other timezone in a sub-dial.

World Timers

On the other hand, world timers—also aptly known as time zone watches—tell time across more than two time zones. Twenty-four, to be exact.

So how do world timers work? Most feature an adjustable ring or two with multiple locations, usually major cities within a time zone. There is also a rotating ring displaying the hours. To set the time, the wearer simply aligns their home time with the correct hour on the time zone bezel. To tell time in different locations, most world timers feature a pusher that adjusts the rings accordingly, but even without these adjustments, the wearer can check the current time in the 23 other time zones at a glance, making them an invaluable tool for those who have loved ones or business partners across the globe.

  • A. Lange & Sohne
  • Chopard L.U.C
  • Girard-Perregaux
  • Lange 1 Time Zone Ref. 116.039

    Inside the white gold case and under the silver dial sits the L031.1 movement, the same movement as with the other two models in platinum and pink gold.

  • Chopard L.U.C Time Traveller One Ref. 168574-3001

    Encased in stainless steel is the in-house L.U.C 01.05-L movement, and can be admired through the transparent sapphire caseback.

  • Girard-Perregaux 1966 WW.TC Ref. 49557-11-132-BB6C

    This 40mm world timer is powered by their self-winding mechanical GP03300-0027 movement.

graduation watches 01

Watches have always been a means of celebrating significant milestones in a person’s life, and marking a graduation is no exception. After all, what better way is there to show someone who’s given their blood, sweat, and tears—sometimes literally—for that piece of paper that says they’ve accomplished academic excellence than a watch made with skill and craftsmanship?

Here, we’ve put together a list of classic, reliable, but reasonably priced pieces that can help your favorite graduate go from the classroom to the boardroom in style.

Ball Fireman Enterprise Black

graduation watches 02

With its substantial size, glossy black dial, stainless steel bracelet and case, date display, and automatic movement, this is a no-nonsense piece perfect for any young alumnus who wants to toe the line between sporty and chic.

Baume & Mercier Clifton Baumatic

graduation watches 03

With its alligator strap, clean dial, and 40 mm case, this watch has all the markers of a classic timepiece—including a power reserve of 120 hours, date function, and COSC-certified automatic movement.

Bremont Supermarine S301

graduation watches 04

Thinking of what to get an Anglophile alumnus? The Bremont Supermarine was inspired by one of Britain’s most iconic planes, making it not just a beautiful timepiece, with its automatic chronometer movement, brown vintage strap and stainless steel case, but also a fantastic conversation starter.

Edox Les Vauberts

graduation watches 05

Subtly commemorate the year of their graduation with a timepiece that features the biggest contemporary watch trend, the blue dial. This watch’s automatic movement, stainless steel case, date function, and 5 ATM water resistance also make it a strong contender and a great addition to any watch wardrobe.

Hanhart Pioneer One

graduation watches 06

This German timepiece is perfect for the graduate who loves details: from its iconic fluted bezel to its stainless steel bracelet—or calfskin strap; it depends on their aesthetic preferences—this automatic watch melds both vintage and modern aesthetics to create a truly classic watch.


Louis Erard Héritage

graduation watches 07

This automatic timepiece has a lot going for it, from its elegantly embellished dial to its day-date function, making it a great bet for the graduate who refuses to compromise neither style nor substance.

Longines Conquest Classic

graduation watches 06

Think of elegance and you’ll likely think of Longines. We can’t disagree, and the Conquest Classic, with its self-winding movement, monochromatic design and timeless elements is the perfect embodiment of the brand’s credo that elegance is an attitude.

Maurice Lacroix Aikon Automatic

graduation watches 08

Reminiscent of classic sports watches from the 1980s and 1990s, the Aikon is a statement-making watch ideal for a mover and shaker in the making. A substantial piece at 42mm, it houses an automatic movement and features a date function, a beautiful Clous de Paris dial, and water resistance to 200 meters.

In an industry whose power houses are defined by centuries of tradition, it’s rare to see a watch house break out of the box… and succeed. For more than three decades, Hublot, with its unorthodox but breathtaking designs, has proven it is a worthy contender in watchmaking.

 

hublot luxury watch
The “Red Dot” Bang in Hublonium, a material by Hublot containing magnesium and aluminium.

 

What’s In A Name?

Hublot has always touted around the phrase “The Art of Fusion,” but what exactly does that mean? To understand these words is to understand what Hublot, as a brand, stands for: Literally combining—fusing—traditional materials and techniques with the latest that modern technology has to offer. This philosophy has led them to avant garde designs and unique watches, including the incredibly light “Mag Bang” watch, which features their signature rubber strap alongside their very own manufactured material: Hublonium.

 

 

hublot luxury watch
The Classic Fusion Tourbillon King Gold, one of their most recent models incorporating gold and rubber, made in collaboration with artist Richard Orlinski.

 

In the Beginning

The brand’s story began in 1980 with Carlo Crocco designing a watch that can be worn during water activities named “Hublot.” French for “porthole,” the aesthetic of the very first Hublot watch mimics the small, round windows in ships. While this look was not new, it sported an innovative rubber strap combined with gold that made Hublot’s take a novel one. With the rubber strap being both waterproof and comfortable, it gave its wearers the chance to take their watches to the beach, and secured Hublot’s place as an innovator of note.

But in the watch industry, a watch house has to keep innovating in order to be kept in the loop. The rubber strap was easily recreated by other watch companies and Hublot had to come up with something new once more.

 

 

hublot luxury watch
Chairman Jean-Claude Biver (left) & CEO Ricardo Guadalupe (right) 

 

A New Age

With Jean-Claude Biver’s naming as the CEO of Hublot in 2004—working with the current CEO, Ricardo Guadalupe—the company was pushed to branch out from their rubber and gold combination and hone in on other materials. They also made it their ambitious goal to shift the brand from producing almost 90% quartz watches to 90% mechanical watches. The very next year, Hublot came out with the first Big Bang chronograph watch, which was awarded “Best Design of the Year” at the Grand Prix d’Horlogerie event in Geneva. That was the inception of this iconic collection, with innovative takes on the original coming out year after year, one of them being another award-winning watch: the diamond-studded One Million $ Big Bang watch.

The comfort and presence it provided on the wrist made it popular among athletes. Hublot partnered with different teams across various sports, from football to basketball to skiing, with notable collaborations being those with the Los Angeles Lakers and Miami Heat. Hublot also established a partnership with Ferrari, as well as became Official Watchmaker of Formula 1, and Official Time Keeper of two different FIFA World Cups.

 

hublot luxury watch

Constant Innovation

Despite this success, Hublot did not rest on its laurels. The brand branched out with the “Tribute to Antikythera” watch, limited to 4 pieces, and, interestingly enough, not available for sale. It is a replication, in terms of function, of the ancient but complicated horological device found in the wreck near Antikythera Island. Later, they released the more consumer-friendly, seven-complication “Antikythera SunMoon” watch, in a limited run of 20 pieces. Hublot has made many other remarkable watches they put in their haute horlogerie MP Collection such as the “Key of Time” watch and the “LaFerrari” watch.

They also began collaborating with artists from different backgrounds, from tattoo artists and actors to scuptors and musicians, introducing to the world watches that were both fresh and unique. A few of their notable collaborations were with the estate of Bruce Lee; athletes Usain Bolt, Eli Manning, and Floyd Mayweather; musician Nicky Jam; and artistic collective Sang Bleu. Hublot has not been shy about coming out with flashy luxury watches that embody contemporary glitz and glamour.

The brand has also worked with several associations in order to give back to its community, some of which are the Monegasque Association against Muscular Dystrophy; the MDM Foundation, which provides care for orphans in India; and Best Buddies, which creates opportunities for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities internationally.

 

hublot luxury watch

Marking A Milestone

It has been a little over 10 years since Hublot first came to Philippines shores, only a few years after Jean-Claude Biver and Ricardo Guadalupe first made the watch house a name renowned across watch aficionados and collectors worldwide, and there is much for fans of the brand to be excited about.

This year promises many exciting releases from the manufacture: One of their newest timepieces is the Big Bang Paraíba, whose namesake is the Brazilian state where the extremely rare, eponymous Paraíba tourmaline was discovered 30 years ago, whose dazzling hue is credited to the unique combination of copper and manganese found in the previous stone. Paired with a signature rubber or a matching leather strap, it stays true to the brand’s ideals of melding top-notch watchmaking skill with courageous aesthetics.

And with new model releases and innovations being released or in the pipeline, all adherent to the brand’s spirit of innovation and its drive to perfect the art of fusion, we see no end in sight for Hublot’s unique take on horology.

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