The Best Watches For Only Watch 2019
BREGUET In homage to watch-making and aviation, Breguet is reissuing…
In homage to watch-making and aviation, Breguet is reissuing a unique version of its Type 20 pilot chronograph from the 1950s. Its steel case preserves the historical diameter of 38.30 mm, the unique curved horns with lateral bevel, and the pear-shaped crown, typical of the first-generation military models. The new model is equipped with a bidirectional bezel in fluted steel without graduations, along with triangular markings for flight calculations. The dial of the watch is inspired by the very rare civilian and military models, with a bronze coloured dial sold at the time. The Breguet Type 20 Only Watch 2019 is equipped, like the original, with a steel screw-down caseback, offering water resistance up to 30 metres.
ARNOLD & SON
The brand has created a unique edition of its Dial Side True Beat model, with a “true second hand”. It is rare for a true second to be added to a mechanical calibre, and Arnold & Son offers this complication on the DSTB, placing the entire true seconds mechanism on the dial side, making it easy to understand. The components of this display can be found under a large transparent sapphire circle, punctuated with light sky-blue indexes. The piece is characterised by its brushed anthracite DLCtreated steel case, its calfskin strap whose turned-out stitched seam is aligned with the off-centred hour and minute dial, and by the light sky-blue details chosen as the theme of Only Watch 2019. The winning bidder for the DSTB Only Watch will be invited to choose the shape of the true seconds counterweight to replace the anchor-shaped piece.
At SIHH 2019, the brand unveiled the Code 11.59, which immediately became the most talked-about timepiece at the event, for its bold construction. For Only Watch, it will present the Code 11.59 By Audemars Piguet Tourbillon Openworked Unique Piece, a two-tone version that throws into focus the shapes of the case. The central case is constructed of 18k rose gold, whereas the other components are in 18k white gold. The movement is skeletonised and hand-wound and has a rhodium tone, along with a pink-gold titanium tourbillon. The inner bezel is of white gold, and is silver-toned. The watch has a black alligator leather strap
BELL & ROSS
This 40mm timepiece comes in a case made of 18K rose gold, and has a sapphire caseback. The dial is blue and skeletonised, with hours, minutes and seconds, with rose gold applique indices coated in Super-LumiNova, and the crystal is sapphire, with an anti-reflective coating. It comes with a blue strap, with a folding 18K rose gold buckle, and is water-resistant up to 100 metres.
CARL F. BUCHERER
The brand will present a unique diver’s watch. This year’s given colour is blue, and the vibrant hue adorns the dial, bezel, and rubber strap of the Patravi ScubaTec Only Watch 2019. Water resistant up to 500m, this men’s watch has a 44.6mm case crafted from 18k white gold. The silhouettes of eight manta rays – a nod to how many times the Only Watch auction has been held – are on the dial. A unidirectional rotating bezel in white gold and ceramic, the ample use of Super-LumiNova coating, and a helium release valve flanking the case are the numerous safety features that make this special edition of the Patravi ScubaTec a true diver’s instrument. The DLC-coated caseback features an engraving acknowledging that the watch was part of the exclusive Only Watch auction. The timepiece is powered by a CFB 1950.1 caliber automatic movement with a power reserve of 38 hours.
A unique piece, inspired by the new Fifty Fathoms Barakuda model, has been created especially for the charity auction in Geneva. The very first modern diving watch, the Fifty Fathoms was adopted by elite military squads around the world, including the German Bundesmarine in the 1960s. They were supplied with Fifty Fathoms models via Barakuda – a company specialising in the production and marketing of technical diving equipment. The new Fifty Fathoms Barakuda for Only Watch faithfully reinterprets the aesthetic codes of this timepiece from the late 1960s, while making the most of the technical innovations stemming from Blancpain’s long-standing watchmaking experience. Its black dial is punctuated by broad white hour-markers in Super-LumiNova with blue luminescence. The date – a key element of the original model – returns to its favourite position in a prominent window. It is paired with a tropical rubber strap identical to that of the historical models.
The fabulous Récital 23 will be presented at Only Watch. The case is in the form of a vertically elongated oval. The bezel inclines to meet one’s gaze and reveals the three-dimensional architecture of the movement and its time display. The dial of the timepiece is offset in the lower part of the case for intuitive reading of the time, while the upper area shows a hemispherical moon phase. The dome of the moon phase indicator is engraved, and the lower sections filled with luminescent material. It is read via a three-dimensional circular aperture that alone takes over a full day of work to make and decorate. The precision mechanism used to track the moon phase requires a one-day correction every 122 years. The engravers have also contributed a shimmering “broken glass” effect that connects the time display to the moon phase. The final touch to this distinctive piece is the entirely hand-decorated shooting star with a diamond at its centre. It is offered in a titanium grade 5 case, with an automatic movement with a power reserve of 62 hours.
For the Only Watch auction, Chanel is offering two J12 timepieces: one black and one white. The striking duo is equipped with the new and exclusive chronometer-certified Caliber 12.1, presented at Baselworld 2019 and developed by Kenissi manufacture, in which Chanel is a stakeholder. These watches are the first two unique ceramic timepieces from the new J12 generation equipped with the self-winding Caliber 12.1, and are also the very first pair of watches in Only Watch history. They have 38mm cases in highly resistant matte black or matte white ceramic and steel, with bracelets of the same materials. They have a power reserve of 70 hours and are water-resistant up to 200 metres.
The brand will offer a unique edition of its successful Tourbillon Perpetual Calendar Manufacture watch in 18K rose gold, in a 42mm case, featuring a blue tint Meteorite skeleton dial with a heartbeat opening at 6 o’clock, offering its wearer a glance at the watch’s mechanics. This grand complication has a smart weight balance wheel and a delicate and even tourbillon cage. The watch features a stunning, skeletonized blue tint meteorite dial. This four billion-year-old, very rare material fell on earth 80,000 years ago and was found in Namibia, Africa, back in 1839. The Perpetual Calendar complication also displays the day, date and month and requires even less adjustments than an annual calendar. This highly sophisticated complication acknowledges the number of days each month, displays the year and automatically adjusts itself on leap years. The tourbillon’s cage sits at 6 o’clock, with its incorporated seconds hand that rotates once every minute.
Framed by a white gold case, the mechanics of the Arceau L’heure de la lune Only Watch adopts a light, barely-there role. It is meteorite inlaid, with mother-of-pearl as well. The horse, representing the origins of Hermès, gallops elegantly. At 12 o’clock, the moon is adorned by a Pegasus designed by the “dreamer-designer” Dimitri Rybaltchenko. Entitled Pleine Lune (Full Moon), this portrayal of the winged horse hints at a passage between two worlds, where magic and reality merge. On the other side, at 6 o’clock, the view of the moon from the northern hemisphere provides a realistic depiction of its surface. The mobile counters displaying the time and date turn weightlessly to reveal the moon discs, while maintaining their horizontal orientation. The Arceau case, with its asymmetrical lugs, designed by Henri d’Origny in 1978, becomes a lunar crater made of meteorite stone. The Arabic numerals have a distinctive sloping font. This unique Haute Horlogerie timepiece is fitted with a matte alligator strap in graphite grey with a blue zephyr calfskin.
The Laureato Absolute Chronograph For Only Watch will be presented in Geneva. Its broader diameter and taut lines make it a distinguished timepiece. It is lightweight, due to its black PVD-coated titanium case, and water-resistant up to 300 metres. Attired in the blue and dark grey colours of Only Watch 2019, it has an anthracite sunburst dial, blue hour-markers, hands and second hand, edging on the push-pieces in the same shade and a delicately polished and deep azure-lacquered ONLY WATCH logo adorning the screw-in case-back. It has a power reserve of 46 hours.
To mark the eighth edition of Only Watch, the manufacture has created the Classic Fusion Tourbillon Sapphire Orlinski, a unique piece in the charity’s colours. Sculpted into the sapphire – one of the most difficult materials to machine – are the signature edges, bevels and facets of the artist Richard Orlinski. Hublot has redesigned the Classic Fusion Tourbillon Sapphire Orlinski for Only Watch and signed its sapphire as a “unique piece”. The white gold bezel, set with 54 baguette-cut topazes, echoes the facets of the 45mm case. Entirely transparent, it reveals an open-worked architecture – a second nod to the work of the French sculptor – showcasing the gears, tourbillon cage and power reserve. A stylised skeleton calibre merges into the transparent, rubber strap in the colours of Only Watch. It will be delivered in a transparent gift box, supported by the famous “Wild Kong” by Richard Orlinski. The proud owner will have the opportunity to meet Richard Orlinski at his art gallery in Paris, a place dedicated entirely to his work.
On the occasion of the Only Watch 2019 charity auction, Jaeger-LeCoultre is presenting the Master Ultra Thin Perpetual Enamel Chestnut. This white gold piece is instantly charming, with its handguillochéd enamel dial in a striking chestnut colour. The timepiece’s balanced hand-guillochéd dial gives pride of place to four counters, including a new display of the perpetual calendar at 12 o’clock. At 6 o’clock, there is a subtle moon phase that simultaneously indicates the moon’s waxing and waning phases in both hemispheres. The date counter is featured at 9 o’clock, with the days of the week at 3 o’clock. The full splendour of the sunburst guilloché radiates on the dial, providing the Master Ultra Thin Perpetual Enamel Chestnut with an impression of relief and depth.
The brand is donating a special Grande Seconde Skelet-One timepiece to the 2019 Only Watch auction. In this one-of-a-kind edition, the rail-track, the gold hour, minute and seconds hands, and the rolled-edge handmade strap are all reinterpreted in red. Contrasting with the black ceramic of the case and hour ring, red has been chosen as the colour of love — and the flag of Monaco, where the charity is based. The Only Watch travelling exhibition will visit no less than 10 cities next fall, affording collectors from around the world an opportunity to admire this one-of-a-kind timepiece.
For the 2019 edition of Only Watch, MB&F and L’Epée have made the choice to contribute a previously unreleased piece, highlighting the special nature of the auction. ‘Tom & T-Rex’ will be the first – and a unique – example of the T-Rex clock co-created by MB&F and L’Epée in 1839. It has a sculpture mounted atop the body of the hybrid beast, shaped like the figure of a young child. The rider of T-Rex – who MB&F and L’Epée have named Tom – is both companion and ward of his redoubtable steed. Measuring 4.3cm in height, the sitting rider is less than a fifth as tall as the 26.5cm T-Rex. Made of hand-blown Murano glass, the “eyeball” also functions as a clock dial, indicating hours and minutes via two curved hands driven from the centre of the hemitoroidal component. The power reserve is 8 days. Time is set with a key, fitted through the centre of the Murano glass dial, while the power reserve is separately maintained with the same key at the rear of the movement. T-Rex is crafted primarily from palladium-plated brass, bronze, stainless steel and Murano glass.
The Escale Spin Time watch will be the brand’s contribution to Only Watch. The dial is made using grand feu champlevé enamelling and painted by hand by Anita Porchet, considered one of the finest enamellers in the world of watchmaking. It took 200 hours of work and made use of two techniques – grand feu champlevé enamelling and miniature painting. The dial is a white gold plaque, with three shades of enamel — black, turquoise and transparent — are on it. The dial, bezel, lugs and 41mm crown are made of titanium and white gold, and have white diamonds on them. The watch has the LV79 caliber, which displays the time by using rotating cylinders, each set with diamonds. It comes with four alligator straps — black, red, green and white — and is fitted with an 18K white gold ardillon buckle set with diamonds.
The Montblanc 1858 Split Second Chronograph Only Watch 2019 will be presented in Geneva. In the spirit of mountain exploration, Montblanc reinterprets an historical Minerva military monopusher chronograph from the 1930s with the one-of-a kind 1858 Split Second Chronograph Only Watch 2019. For the first time, Montblanc unveils a wristwatch which combines a 44mm case in full satin-finished titanium grade-two, the hand-crafted Montblanc Manufacture Monopusher Chronograph calibre MB M16.31, a brand-new matching sfumato alligator strap and a special dial made of degraded blue agate, a natural stone, giving a unique blue appearance – all those elements making it the ideal watch for collectors. The timepiece features the historical design codes taken from the original 1930s Minerva chronograph including large cathedral hands with a cloisonné design filled with white SuperLumiNova and luminescent Arabic numerals. On the case back, the sapphire crystal reveals the beauty of the Montblanc Manufacture monopusher chronograph Calibre MB M16.31 that features two column wheels, a horizontal coupling, a power reserve of 50 hours and a large screwed balance.
Richard Mille is offering a prototype of the RM 11-03 McLaren, an automatic flyback chronograph watch created in close collaboration with the car manufacturer’s engineers. The case is made of Carbon TPT interlaced with Orange Quartz TPT, resulting in an extremely resistant and lightweight housing that also pays tribute to the brand’s history in a colour that is synonymous with McLaren. The titanium pushers echo the distinctive headlamp design of the McLaren 720S. Titanium inserts, recalling the iconic McLaren F1’s air-intake snorkel and bearing the McLaren logo, adorn the bezel. The complex grade 5 titanium crown is shaped like a McLaren lightweight wheel. Meanwhile, the McLaren Speedmark logo is incorporated into the rubber strap specially developed for this edition. The movement has a 55-hour power reserve. The baseplate and bridges for this calibre, crafted of PVD-treated grade 5 titanium, ensure the requisite stiffness and perfect functioning of the going train. The satin-finish grade 5 titanium upper bridge further accentuates the depth of the calibre, creating a visual trajectory around the annual calendar and oversized date as well as the 12-hour chronograph and countdown counters
For Only Watch 2019, Ulysse Nardin has taken inspiration from EPFL’s research group, REHAssist, to design a watch fitted with an “exoskeleton”, a technological device used to help people with motor impairment to move. The device, called Autonomyo, when worn, imitates the human skeleton and detects the intended movement (flexion, extension and abduction of the legs), allowing the wearer to walk. The watch is called EXO-Skeleton X, and it lays bare the entire gear train through a sapphire crystal. It is completed by an “exoskeleton” formed from four flexible blades fixed to the case to drastically improve comfort of wear.
The release of a one-of-a-kind white gold iteration of the original Zenith El Primero A386 Revival will take place at this year’s Only Watch auction. Presented in a customised box, this El Primero A386 Revival features a singular turquoise subdial in tribute to this year’s Only Watch theme colour, as well as a caseback engraved with Only Watch and Unique Piece inscriptions. The buyer of this one-off timepiece will also be rewarded with an array of watchmaking experiences. This includes an invitation to visit the Monde étoile de Zenith and the famous grenier of its Manufacture in Le Locle, the attic where Charles Vermot hid the famous tools for the El Primero movement that was to revolutionise Zenith’s future. The owner will also be a guest at the closing event in Geneva that will conclude the El Primero 50th anniversary “Le Grenier Club” tour; the owner will be presented with a VIP package for two including hotel accommodation and a range of exclusive experiences.