There's barely a month to go before the Richemont Group fraternity converges for SIHH 2016 and watch lovers the world over are already buzzing, thanks largely to the occasional teasers that have been revealed since November. Here Buro 24/7 Middle East looks at what could potentially be the new eight wonders of the horological world...
Four new models will be added into the Vacheron Constantin Métiers d'Art Fabuleux Ornements collection: Ottoman, Indian, Indian and French. Utilising the same basic design motifs, the new models feature colour variations and new case materials. Our pick of the four new additions is the French Lace Métiers d'Art Fabuleux Ornements. With the red and gold case and a bezel set with 64 round-cut diamonds, the French offering to the collection perfectly celebrates the decorative arts of the culture.
The legendary Reverso will celebrate its 85th anniversary and Jaeger-LeCoultre will unveil new models for both the Classic and Tribute collections. The spotlight however might fall specifically on the Reverso Tribute Calendar. At the front, the timepiece displays the time, day, date as well as the moonphase while on the flipside, it shows the time in a second-time zone in addition to a day-night indication. The Reverso Tribute Calendar will be launched in pink gold only.
Roger Dubuis is amping up its women's timepieces with two new watches being added to the Velvet collection: The Blossom Velvet Pink and Velvet Secret Heart. The men's offering will come in the form of the Excalibur Skeleton Automatic, the newest member of the brand's iconic skeletonised watch collection. Made of carbon fibre sheet molding compound, the watch combines a lightweight frame with a look that is both artistic and technologically-advanced. The self-winding movement running in 35 jewels will be priced at Dhs230,000.
Baume & Mercier
For SIHH 2016, Baume & Mercier will showcase the Clifton Chronograph Complete Calendar. Despite featuring three sub-dials and eight hands, the timepiece retains an air of elegance and sophistication. The busy face combines two of the most appreciated watchmaking complications: a chronograph function and a complete calendar. The chamfered sides along with black alligator strap and a folding completes this sophisticated offering, and will be priced at Dhs16,000.
The Panerai Radiomir 1940 3 Days Automatic PAM00655 is an anomaly of sorts; one of only a handful of watches from the brand that features a white dial — that in itself makes it exclusive. Elsewhere, the indexes are also painted in a luminous material that matches the colour of the hands. As the name suggests, the watch has three days of power reserve and is water-resistant for up to about 100m. Coming together with a natural, untreated leather strap with contrasting cream stitching, the watch will be priced at Dhs39,000.
Piaget will present the Emperador Coussin XL 700P to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the brand's inhouse quartz caliber 7P — its first inhouse quartz movement. The 700P is a mechanical-quartz hybrid that will be limited to only 118 pieces. Interestingly, the design of the watch showcases the inner workings on the front face dial as opposed to the back, with the offset micro-rotor and the quartz generator forming a figure of eight while the time itself is tucked away to the bottom right. At the back, two small windows offer a further glimpse into the watch's inner workings. The price for the Emperador Coussin XL 700P is still unconfirmed.
IWC will be adding to its much-beloved Aquatimer collection. One of the new watches stems from its connection to diver Jacques-Yves Cousteau. Named the Expedition Jacques-Yves Cousteau, the watch has a stainless steel case, stunning blue dial and at the back, the engraved stainless-steel case shows 'le Commandant' Jacques-Yves Cousteau with his trademark beanie. Other features include the mechanical external-internal rotating bezel, the SafeDive system and luminescent elements, making this a worthy ode to the legendary explorer.
Making its debut at next year's show, Cartier's Clé de Cartier Automatic Skeleton will be powered by the brand's first skeleton movement with automatic winding. Bearing all the signature design cues of the maison's skeleton watches, including the baseplate that's open-worked to create oversized Roman numerals, the new timepiece will be priced at Dhs240,000. As an added treat, a brilliant-cut diamond-set version will be produced as well.
The Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie (SIHH) 2016 will run from January 18-22 at the Geneva Palexpo.