As Baselworld 2015 comes to an end, we’re taking a look at all of our favourite watches from the show. Whether you’re after a timepiece that looks pretty, glows in the dark, has a miniature solar system or just tells you the time (in all 24 timezones in the world, no less) read on…
The Arty One
They call it: Ulysse Nardin Hannibal Minute Repeater
Will set you back: CHF 725,000 (£507,611.90)
Word on the street: Ulysse Nardin’s latest release combines that watchmaker’s traditional use of jaquemarts (that is, an automaton used with a hammer to strike the time on a bell or gong) with a very unusual dial. The dial is made from polished granite sourced from the Alps and depicts Hannibal Barca leading his troops (and elephants) through the Alps during the Second Punic War in 218 BC. A piece of history as well as a timepiece, then.
Best feature: Its uniqueness – get one of these on your wrist and you’re unlikely to run in to anyone else wearing the same watch (not least because only 30 of them will be made).
Get it from: UlyseeNardin.com later in the year
The World Time One
They call it: Louis Vuitton Escale World Time Minute Repeater
Will set you back: €280,000 (£206,284.90)
Word on the street: One of the most unique (and opinion-dividing) watches on show at Basel 2015 was Louis Vuitton’s latest take on their famous World Time watches. The dial of this timepiece is a mini-oil painting that takes over 40 hours to craft, with the outer dials labelling the 24 time zones around the world and the centre dials showing the local time – so you can basically tell the time of any country in the world in a single glance. A Forex trader’s dream watch?
Best feature: Without a shadow of a doubt, the unusual multi-time-zone dial. Features that would be selling points in any other watch, like the 18 karat pink gold finish, clear sapphire case back and LV235 caliber are just run-of-the-mill in this timepiece.
Get it from: LouisVuitton.com – the release date is yet TBC
The Skeletonized TAG
They call it: TAG Heuer Carrera Calibre Heuer 01
Will set you back: $4,900 (£3,609.99)
Word on the street: The announcement of TAG’s partnership with Google and Intel to make a smart watch to rival the Apple Watch made quite a stir at Baselworld. But so did the first skeletonized Carrera watch, distinguished from its predecessors by its skeletonized chronograph and open worked motor, and aligned to its roots in motorsport by its racing-style leather strap.
Best feature: It’s all about the design with this one – though it’s certainly worth mentioning that the new case design utilises titanium for greater shock prevention (just in case you’re prone to clumsy moments).
Get it from: TAGHeuer.com
The New Rolex
They call it: Rolex Oyster Perpetual Day-Date
Will set you back: Price varies depending on material (but think around the £20,000 mark)
Word on the street: A new Rolex was always going to get Basel talking – especially the new generation of the “President’s Watch” (so-called because it’s the favourite of leaders and VIPs around the world). The new Day-Date is available in Rolex’s patented Everose gold, 950 platinum, or 18k yellow or white gold, with new dial colours and laser-etched motifs. And at the heart of the new Rolex is the new caliber 3255 chronometer, developed in-house by Rolex and certified by the Swiss Official Chronometer Testing Institute.
Best feature: The new super-accurate chronometer – it’s 10 times more precise than a traditional hairspring watch and made from nickel-phosphorus, so it’s not sensitive to magnetic interference. Hey, every millisecond counts when you’re trying to get those stops in place…
Get it from: Rolex.com
The Travelling One
They call it: Patek Philippe Ref. 5524 Calatrava Pilot Travel Time
Will set you back: CHF 42,000 (£29,406.48)
Word on the street: Probably the most talked-about timepiece of Basel ’15, this new release from Patek Philippe features the patented dual-timezone technology that the watchmaker invented back in 1930s (the “home” and “away” clocks were designed for frequent travellers, but can come in handy for trading, too). The dark blue lacquer face is designed to resemble the body paint of 30s American fighter planes, and the white-gold case and sapphire back give it a luxurious finish.
Best feature: It’s vintage-inspired look but very up-to-date tech.
Get it from: Patek.com
The Bond-inspired one
They call it: Omega Seamaster Aqua Terra
Will set you back: £4,630
Word on the street: A new Bond film means a new 007 Omega watch, so with Spectre on the horizon, the ‘Bondification’ of the Seamaster Aqua Terra was inevitable. The blue and yellow detail is inspired by the Bond family crest, which makes up the pattern on the back of the dial, and the sapphire crystal case back is shaped to resemble a gun barrel – they’re really running with the Bond theme.
Best feature: Attention to detail: the timepiece is resistant to magnetic fields greater than 15,007 gauss and 15,007 piece will be made of the limited-edition watch. Top marks for effort.
Get it from: OmegaWatches.com
The Glow-in-the-Dark One
They call it: Sarpaneva Korona Northern Lights
Will set you back: €14,500 (£10,682.61)
Word on the street: The high-end watch equivalent of those little plastic glow-in-the-dark stars you stuck on your bedroom ceiling as a kid, the Northern Lights watch is the result of a partnership between Finnish watch maker Stepan Sarpaneva and a Swedish specialist in luminous materials. And the result is striking – it glows so brightly in the dark that it looks completely different to its daylight counterpart.
Best feature: It’s definitely a talking point – and there will only be 8 of each colour produced, so you’ll have to get in fast!
Get it from: SarapanevaWatches.com
The Explorer One
They call it: Zenith Academy Christophe Colomb Hurricane Grand Voyage II
Will set you back: Price on request
Word on the street: Swiss watchmaker Zenith celebrated their 150th anniversary at Baselworld 2015 – and they did it in style, unveiling the new model of their Christopher Colombus-inspired watch, the first generation of which came out in 2013. The new timepiece is beautifully designed, has some impressive features like a visible winding chain mechanism and a Gravity Control module (which keeps the watch’s regulating organ horizontal, despite the watch’s position on the wrist. And they’re rare – only 10 limited-edition pieces will be produced.
Best feature: The back of the dial! Every timepiece has a miniature piece of art depicting Christopher Colombus’ discovery of America that’s hand engraved, vividly coloured and secured by a system of gold appliqués.
Get it from: ZenithWatches.com
The Classic One
They call it: Patek Philippe Nautilus 5711R Brown
Will set you back: $51,000 (£34,267.17)
Word on the street: There was plenty of colour, embellishment and even miniature pieces of art emblazoned on the best watches of Basel ’15. But if that’s all a bit much for you, Patek Philippe’s new edition of the Nautilus flew the flag for classic watches with no frills and no fuss – just the time, in an instantly recognisable design reinvented with the rose gold that was all over this year’s watch and jewellery fair.
Best feature: The new rose gold body was teamed with a brown face that catches the light nicely and set off the 18 karat rose gold hands and dial.
Get it from: Patek.com
The Out-of-This World One
They call it: Jacob and Co Astronomia Tourbillon
Will set you back: £370,000
Word on the street: Probably the most unusual watch on offer at Basel 2015 was the Astronomia Tourbillon. A domed sapphire case houses a spinning 288-sided diamond (a.k.a. the moon) which orbits a hand-painted model of the moon, plus the brains of the watch and a revolving watch face on a fourth “arm”.
Best feature: A sapphire case, a 288-sided diamond, a miniature earth, a spinning clock… Take your pick.
Get it from: JacobandCo.com
Tweet @LFXKatie and let us know which new watch release you’ve got your eye on…
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