6 Must-have Watches on Every Connoisseur’s Bucket List1:09 pm
Time is eternal! History, the present and the future all combine to give you an essence of infinite time. And watchmakers have over centuries captured this essence by crafting time tellers that last forever, ticking with each passing minute and giving you a sense of eternity. Time is what connects generations and watches are a perfect symbol of that. Connoisseurs love to collect watches that speak of a rich history along with being a reliable investment for the future. And what better example of this unbeatable combination than a Swiss made watch. Swiss watches have stood the test of time and even with centuries of evolution have come out as the strongest thanks to their roots in traditional watchmaking. To make the cut, Swiss watches not only have captured the essence of the past but also of the future. The Watch Guide brings you the top 6 must-have watches on every connoisseur’s bucket list.
The Speedmaster’57 has history attached right in its name. The watch is a tribute to the legendary ancestor, the first Omega Speedmaster launched in 1957. The straight lugs extending from the watch case and bracelet are a direct inspiration from the first time teller. The legendary Omega moonwatch was part of six lunar missions, and this time teller is just as capable, even more as a matter of fact, to survive under the harshest conditions. For watch connoisseurs, the first pro factor to own a moonwatch is its legendary history, then is the brand name and if these reasons are not convincing enough, it’s the mechanism. The watch is powered with a Co-Axial caliber 9300 self-winding chronograph movement with a column wheel mechanism and Co-Axial Escapement for greater precision, stability and durability of the movement.
It features a black dial with a seconds sub-dial at 9 o’clock and a 12-hour and 60-minute chronograph recorder on the sub-dial at 3 o’clock. The central chronograph seconds hand and a date window are located at the 6 o’clock position. A scratch-resistant sapphire crystal protects the bold dial. The brushed bezel, with its tachymeter scale, is mounted on a 41 mm stainless steel case and presented on a matching bracelet.
A.Lange & Sohne Lange 1 Grand
Varying from the traditional Swiss watchmaking mechanism we now move on to a unique brand that rose from ashes to conquer the watch world. This German brand has history dating back to the World war era where it faced the wrath of war and yet years later came back stronger than ever. The A.Lange & Sohne Lange 1 Grand has the mark of a stormy history along with the hope for a shining future. A connoisseur who loves to experiment with mechanical watches should definitely experience an A.Lange & Sohne watch. It boasts of German precision which is seen through the beautiful case back. The watch is housed in a polished 18kt rose gold case with a fine satin finished case band.
The flat metallic silver main dial has a hour & minute sub-dial offset to the left side of the dial & with a slightly recessed rim finished with a very fine concentric circle pattern texture. The dial features applied polished rose gold roman numerals & diamond shaped index hour markers. The seconds sub-dial offset is slightly recessed to the bottom right corner of the dial, finished with a very fine concentric circle pattern texture. The watch has the A.Lange & Sohne patented large double window date display located at the the top right corner of the dial, with a quick date-correction button located on the case edge at the 10 o’clock position. The moonphase aperture is located at the center of the sub-dial. The wheel train of the moonphase is extremely accurate with a single correction needed only once in every 122.6 years. A power Reserve (Up/Down) indicator is located at the 3 o’clock position. The watch is powered with caliber L095.3 with an approximate power reserve of 72+ hours.
Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Grande Ultra Thin
It was 1903 when Jacques-David LeCoultre rose to the challenge set by Swiss watch manufacturers Edmond Jaeger to create the ‘world’s thinnest movements’ which in turn led to the joining of Jaeger and LeCoultre. As a longstanding specialist in ultra-thin watches Jaeger-LeCoultre has introduced the Master Ultra Thin collection which includes clear-cut lines and is reminiscent of the classic round watch. For a connoisseur, an ultra slim watch is a definitive part of the bucket list. A Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Ultra Slim watch is a smart choice because of the precise mechanism that has been tested through ages. It is a watch than can be passed on through generations.
This Jaeger-LeCoultre features a suitably slim 39mm case, rhodium plated markers and sword shaped hands. The watch supports a moonphase function with a beautiful clean dial design, an open caseback and a black alligator leather strap with a neat steel folding clasp. Every watch made by Jaeger-LeCoultre has passed the brand’s 1000-hour control tests to ensure that the functionality of the watch remains at its highest. The rotor is engraved with the Master Control 1000 Hours and the manufacturer’s logo.
Jaeger-LeCoultre submits all their watches to a strict ‘1000 Hours Control’ where watches undergo a full 1000 hours of tests around temperature, atmospheric pressure, shock and magnetic field resistance as well as water-resistance trials. The watch is best known for its Moon-phase complication with a date display elegantly featured on a slim case.
Dating back to 1775, Breguet is a watchmaker that can be regarded as the forefather of watchmaking. Founded by Abraham Louis Breguet in France, the company became associated with crowned heads. Marie Antoinette became fascinated by the timepieces, and Louis XVI bought several which showed how popular the brand was back then. The company, over the years, has defined and redefined itself, adapting to the changing needs of time. Incorporating elements of the past, yet creating bold new pieces with a contemporary edge, is what the brand has been doing of late. It is a perfect choice for connoisseurs who wish to own a piece of history. How many people after all can claim to be owning a watch that comes from a brand which was part of the French royalty?
The classique boasts of a vintage look. The 18 carat rose gold case measures 39mm in diameter, and has the iconic Breguet coined edge. Roman numeral hour markers are imprinted on the white enamel dial; paving the way for the classic Breguet styled hands in blued steel. Black dots mark the minute track, and a moon phase aperture is found beneath the 12 o’ clock position. Crafted of the finest raw materials, the watch features a brown crocodile/alligator leather strap with a tang buckle. The case back consists of a scratch resistant sapphire crystal. A power reserve indicator is placed amidst this beautifully designed piece.
The watch functions include day, hour, seconds and moon phases. Characterized by automatic movement, the watch incorporates the Breguet caliber 591 DRL, which beats at a high frequency of 28,800 vibrations per hour. The watch also has a 38 hour power reserve. Infusing a simple yet classy design, it is made for everyday use. Furthermore, it is also water resistant up to 30m.
The IWC Portofino drives its name from the former fishing village on the Gulf of Tigullino, in Genoa, Italy, which serves as a classic vacation spot for celebrities the world over. Charm, excellence, precision, luxury have all become an integral part of this exquisite watch. It molds luxury and movement such that the watch is desired by one and all. IWC is known to craft time tellers that bring out the innovativeness and timeless appeal of the brand, which is what is seen through this timepiece.
The watch is housed in a 42mm polished stainless steel case. The “Milanese” design woven mesh steel bracelet gives it an extremely comfortable fit. It has a black dial with polished steel applied indexes & Roman numeral hour markers. The polished elegant leaf shaped hour & minutes hands point at indexes. The chronograph/stopwatch functions include a large central second’s counter, a 30 minute sub-dial counter located at the 12 o’clock position and a 12 hour sub-dial counter which is located at the 6 o’clock position. The sub-dial perimeters are slightly recessed with a fine concentric guilloche texture; the chronograph sub-dials also have a very thin polished steel rim on the outer edge. The day & date window are displayed at the 3 o’clock position. The watch is powered with the IWC calibre 79320, contains 25 jewels & beats at 28,800 vph & has an approximate power reserve of 44 hours.
Jaquet Droz Astrale The Eclipse Black Enamel
The Jaquet Droz Astrale collection is a tribute to Pierre Jaquet-Droz, who created timepieces unanimously acclaimed for their elegance and phenomenal complexity. The brand needs no introduction. It has crafted unique time tellers since its inception and is a watch connoisseur’s dream. With a polished 18kt rose gold case and a black “Grand Feu” enamel dial this Jaquet Droz timepiece defines perfection to its core. It has a white printed small index hour marker on the extreme edge of the dial. The polished rose gold hour & minute hands bring with them an exquisite touch. The watch features a day and month window displayed beneath the 12 o’clock position.
The date is indicated by the polished rose gold wavy (serpentine) hand with a half-moon tip, which points to the current date printed on the dial perimeter. The retrograde moonphase at the 6 o’clock position has an applied rose gold full moon & 8 rhodium plated stars (the stars are for aesthetics only). The phases of the moon is indicated by a black coloured hand with a disc which moves over the moon on the dial, slowly covering & then exposing the moon, imitating the waning & waxing of the moonphases. Rather than this hand making full revolutions, at the end of each moon cycle the hand flips back to the beginning – this complication is called a “retrograde hand”.
By Disha Birdie
Sr. Features Writer, The Watch Guide
A budding writer and watch enthusiast with a passion for discovering Swiss watchmaking know-how.