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Watches Of The Week: 08/01/2024 - 14/01/2024

The second week of 2024 was far more eventful than the first week was, with a plethora of new and exciting watches being unveiled. Blancpain released three brand new watches, one of them alongside Swatch. Ulysse Nardin dropped a new Blast Tourbillon model commemorating the Year of the Dragon, with IWC doing the same with its Portugieser Chronograph. Hope you have a great week ahead.

Blancpain Villeret Traditional Chinese Calendar “Year of the Dragon”

The Blancpain Villeret Traditional Chinese Calendar "Year of the Dragon" is a masterfully crafted timepiece that seamlessly blends traditional horology with Chinese cultural symbolism. Housed in a 45mm red gold case, the watch features an intricately detailed dial that showcases traditional Chinese elements. The highlight is the central disc portraying a dragon, a symbol of strength and good fortune in Chinese culture. The dragon is meticulously engraved and enameled, creating a visually stunning and culturally rich focal point.

The watch boasts a comprehensive Chinese calendar, incorporating both the Gregorian and traditional Chinese lunar calendars. It displays hours, minutes, small seconds, and a complete calendar with day, date, month, and leap year indications. The moon phase complication is also included, featuring a beautifully rendered yin-yang symbol. Powered by Blancpain's Caliber 3638, a self-winding movement with an impressive power reserve of seven days, this timepiece is a testament to Blancpain's commitment to precision and artistry. Limited to 50 pieces, the Blancpain Villeret Traditional Chinese Calendar "Year of the Dragon" is a collector's dream, fusing technical excellence with cultural significance.

Brand: Blancpain

Model: Villeret Traditional Chinese Calendar “Year of the Dragon”

Reference: 0888-3632C-55B

Case: 45.2mm x 15.1mm

Case Material: Red Gold

Water Resistance: 30m

Calibre: Cal. 3638

Price: On Request (Limited to 50 pieces)

Verdict: Green and gold. A combination that resonates well beyond Chinese culture. Absolutely love it, even though it teters on the fine line of being just a touch too big.

Blancpain x Swatch Scuba Fifty Fathoms OCEAN OF STORMS

The new Blancpain x Swatch Scuba Fifty Fathoms OCEAN OF STORMS heralds in the latest collaborative timepiece between the Swiss watchmakers. A testament to the forward-thinking nature of both Blancpain and Swatch, the new OCEAN OF STORMS draws clear inspiration from the original Fifty Fathoms timepiece, one of the most coveted and highly sought after watches in the world.

The respect paid to the Fifty Fathoms and all of its derivatives should reign down over the Blancpain x Swatch Scuba Fifty Fathoms OCEAN OF STORMS, despite its almost play-like nature. Like chalk and cheese, the OCEAN OF STORMS and the Fifty Fathoms are worlds apart, but what it does is opens the door for buyers and interested folk alike to understand the brand and perhaps turn a spectator into a buyer in the coming years.

Brand: Blancpain

Model: Scuba Fifty Fathoms “OCEANS OF STORMS

Reference: SO35B400

Case: 42.3mm x 14.4mm

Case Material: Bioceramic

Water Resistance: 91m

Calibre: Sistem51

Price: AUD655

Verdict: The coolest piece to come out of this Blancpain x Swatch collaboration so far. 

Blancpain Ladybird Colours

With Valentine's Day seemingly just around the corner, Blancpain has announced its offering in the form of the Blancpain Ladybird Colours. Featuring a stunning red aesthetic complete with diamonds and a mother-of-pearl dial, the Blancpain Ladybird Colours is a delectable package that will no doubt impress anyone come this, the day of love.

One of the more striking features of the Blancpain Ladybird Colours is the application of 2 carats of diamonds and the application of red throughout. For example, the red of the Roman numerals was made via five separate applications of colour. There is also a heart-shaped diamond-set ring with a red Cupid's arrow, forming the second hand. There is a diamond set inner circle within the mother-of-pearl dial, as well as a case, bezel, lugs and buckle set with 59 hand-set diamonds.

Brand: Blancpain

Model: Ladybird Colours

Reference: 3660C-1954-55A

Case: 34.9mm

Case Material: White Gold

Water Resistance: 30m

Calibre: 1153

Price: AUD48,000 (Limited to 99 pieces)

Verdict: A beautiful and uber-generous gift for a very special someone this Valentine's Day.

Ulysse Nardin Blast Tourbillon Dragon

The Ulysse Nardin Blast Tourbillon Dragon represents a fusion of exquisite craftsmanship and avant-garde design. Housed in a 45mm rose gold and titanium case, the timepiece showcases a stunning dragon motif on its open-worked dial, skillfully crafted to convey dynamic energy and traditional symbolism. The dragon, rendered in meticulous detail, intertwines with the intricate mechanical components, including the impressive flying tourbillon at 6 o'clock. The skeletonized architecture offers a captivating view of the UN-172 movement, featuring a silicon escapement and a 72-hour power reserve. The use of avant-garde materials, such as carbon fiber and titanium, enhances the timepiece's robustness and modern aesthetic.

The Ulysse Nardin Blast Tourbillon Dragon is not merely a horological masterpiece but a testament to the brand's innovation and artistic expression. Limited to a select number of pieces, this timepiece caters to collectors who appreciate the convergence of technical prowess and visual allure in a luxury watch. The Dragon motif, inspired by Chinese culture, adds a distinctive touch to this contemporary tourbillon watch, making it a compelling choice for those seeking a blend of tradition and cutting-edge design in a high-end timekeeping instrument.

Brand: Ulysse Nardin 

Model: Blast Tourbillon Dragon

Reference: 1725-400-2A/1A

Case: 45mm

Case Material: Rose Gold and Titanium

Water Resistance: -

Calibre: UN-172

Price: AUD160,100 (Limited to 88 pieces)

Verdict: Ulysse Nardin excelling at what it does best, once again.

IWC Portugieser Chronograph “Year of the Dragon”

Like Blancpain and Ulysse Nardin, IWC released a celebratory timepiece for the new Chinese Zodiac. The Portugieser Chronograph “Year of the Dragon" presents in beautiful and sophisticated fashion. It features a unique aesthetic with a beautiful burgundy dial, offset by gilt numerals and hands.

Turn the Portugieser Chronograph “Year of the Dragon” over and what you see is IWC's calibre 69355 complete with a gold-plated rotor that depicts the Chinese Zodiac dragon in all of its glory. 

Brand: IWC

Model: Portugieser Chronograph “Year of the Dragon”

Reference: IW371629

Case: 41mm x 13.1mm

Case Material: Stainless Steel

Water Resistance: 30m

Calibre: 69355

Price: USD9,350 (Limited to 1,000 pieces)

Verdict: A colourway that works brilliantly regardless of your sentiment toward the Chinese Zodiacs.


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