After white, blue has always been the most popular shade for watches around the world. What started around five decades ago as the dial color for diver’s watches (for visibility underwater), it is now a ubiquitous colour found on all kinds of timepieces. In a year where blue seems to be particularly popular, here’s our pick of the best.
ULYSSE NARDIN FREAK VISION
In 2001, Ulysse Nardin startled the world of horology with its pioneering Freak timepiece, a design masterpiece where the rotating tourbillon carrousel doubled up as the minute hand. It also stood out for being the first watch to use silicon parts. This new version, which follows up on the Ulysse Nardin InnoVision 2 Concept Watch from last year, is a game- changer as well. Its notable features include a super-light silicium balance wheel with nickel mass elements and stabilising micro-blades. The 45mm platinum case is made to look even thinner with the new box-domed crystal. Time is still indicated in the ‘Freak’ style by the baguette movement itself, a ‘flying carrousel’ rotating around its own axis. The new 3D-carved upper bridge is inspired by a boat’s hull. The new box-domed sapphire allows for a thinner middle and bezel. The case comes with lateral `brancards’ coated in blue rubber. The manual winding movement has a power reserve of 50 hours.
BREGUET MARINE CHRONOGRAPHE 5527
Endowed with the graphic codes of the new generation marine models presented last year, this 42.3mm timepiece comes in an 18K white gold case with a fluted case band. A variation in rose gold is also available with a silvered gold dial. Features a central chronograph hand and two distinct sub-dials at 3 and 6 o’clock. The date indicator is between 4 and 5. Mechanical self winding movement has a 48-hour power reserve.
BLANCPAIN FIFTY FATHOMS BATHYSCAPHE
The vintage-inspired Fifty Fathoms Bathyscape was first unveiled in 2013 and the range is now being extended through this new 38mm steel-cased model with an abyss blue dial. The steel bezel features a blue ceramic insert, while the hour-markers are made of Liquid metal, an alloy known for its deformation resistance and long-term stability. The self-winding movement has a power reserve of 100 hours.
JAEGERLECOULTRE REVERSO TRIBUTE SMALL SECOND
Besides the blue dial, the other notable aspect of this single face version of the legendary watch is the interchangeable blue calfskin strap handcrafted by the celebrated Argentinean shoemaker Casa Fagliano, otherwise known around the world for its polo boots. The fact that Reverso was originally designed for polo players makes this partnership all the more appropriate. Comes in a 45.6mm x 27.4mm steel case and is powered by a manually wound mechanical movement.
AUDEMARS PIGUET ROYAL OAK OFFSHORE SELF WINDING CHRONOGRAPH
The indigo colour dial of this watch, in a 42mm steel case, complements the neat finish of the blue ceramic push pieces and screw-locked crown. The dial’s Méga Tapisserie pattern, blue counters and white gold Royal Oak hands with luminescent coating are other standout features. The self winding mechanical movement has a power reserve of 50 hours.
JAQUET DROZ SW CHRONO
The new version of the chronograph, originally launched in 2008, comes in a 45mm steel case with a blue dial and a matching blue strap. Other features include a big date window at 12 o’clock, chronograph hours counter at 9 o’clock, and chronograph minutes counter at 3 o’clock. Power reserve of 40 hours.
FREDERIQUE CONSTANT HYBRID MANUFACTURE
On the outside, this watch, in a 42mm stainless steel case, looks like any other timepiece from the brand, but with the exception of the ‘HYBRID’ stamp on the elegant dial. And that’s the technology that sets it apart. Its automatic movement is fitted with an additional electronic module that connects to a smartphone via Bluetooth, and turns the timepiece into a smartwatch, with functions like activity tracking, sleep monitoring and world time. The quartz movement that powers the analog part of the watch has a power reserve of 42 hours, while the electronic module comes with a battery that needs recharging every seven days.
TAG HEUER CARRERA HEUER 02
TAG is marking the 55th birthday of this legendary watch with a new chronograph movement. It comes in a 43mm modular case with a tachymeter bezel and a skeleton dial with 3-6-9 counters. Available in 13 contemporary variants in steel, carbon, ceramic or gold, with a metal, rubber, leather or ceramic bracelet, plus a 45mm version with GMT function. Power reserve 75 hours.
BELL & ROSS BR03-92 DIVER BLUE
This diver’s watch, in a 42mm diameter, satin polished steel case with a unidirectional bezel and a blue dial, achieves maximum legibility in water via its indices and numerals, which are coated in white SuperLuminova. The new color combination, paired with the emblematic square shape of the BR collection, gives this automatic timepiece a sporty aesthetic.
HUBLOT CLASSIC FUSION CHRONOGRAPH BERLUTI SCRITTO OCEAN BLUE
The Hublot Classic Fusion Berluti lineup has gotten even bigger this year, with the introduction of this chronograph in a 45mm titanium case, featuring an ocean blue dial. The latter is based on a bi-compax layout, featuring running seconds at 3, and a 30-minute chronic register at 9 o’clock. The automatic movement has a power reserve of 42 hours. Limited edition of 250 pieces.
OMEGA SEAMASTER DIVER 300Mt
This new version of the classic 1993 model is a massive upgrade. Most notably, it introduces the METAS (Swiss Institute Of Metrology) certified movement to the Seamaster 300M family through the Master Chronometer 8800, which replaces the old Co-Axial 2500. In all, there are now a total of 14 changes, including six steel and eight two-tone models with 42mm-wide stainless steel cases. The date window has been moved to 6 o’clock, while there’s also a re-designed helium escape valve. The James Bond of the ’90s would definitely be proud. Power reserve 55 hours.
CASIO EDIFICE EFR-556PC-2AV
The latest addition to Casio’s popular EFR-556 collection comes in a 53.5mm rose gold ion-plated case and features a blue dial (its design is inspired by motor sports). The chronograph’s rounded sections display seconds and minutes. It can also measure time intervals with an accuracy of a fraction of a second. A 24-hour time format is available under the 12-hour counter. Works on SR920SW batteries, which last for three years.
CALVIN KLEIN EVIDENCE
A colourful fashion was the inspiration behind the design of this sleek and sporty timepiece. The 42mm stainless steel PVD black case comes with a tonal dial, designed bezel and a rubber strap.
TISSOT CHEMIN DES TOURELLES
The collection, which derives its name from the street where the brand’s first factory was established (in the year 1907), now gets a blue variant with this watch. Featuring a 42mm stainless steel case, it comes in a variety of different finishes, including polished and brushed. Many pieces in the collection — the three hand, the chronograph and the GMT — have intricate details such as the clous de Paris under the Roman indices. The Swiss-made automatic movement offers up to 80 hours of power reserve.
SEIKO PRESAGE SHIPPO ENAMEL LIMITED EDITION
The distinctive blue dial of this watch is made from an enamel called Shippo, created using a technology that was developed in Japan in the 17th century. Unlike porcelain enamel, Shippo is polished after firing. The watch also marks the debut of a new automatic caliber in the Presage collection. Though 1.3mm slimmer than the previous movement, it is way more powerful. It’s available in two versions of the blue dial — with just a date window, and one with a calendar and power-reserve sub-dials. The former has a power reserve of 50 hours, and the latter of 45 hours. Limited edition of 2500 pieces in each version.
FOSSIL THE MINIMALIST FS5461
Fossil’s minimalistic new watch comes with a quartz movement, a 44mm steel case (featuring a blue hue complemented by an elegant blue dial) and a matching steel bracelet