The collective buzz of Baselworld is an annual energy boost to the watch world. International journalists, retailers, watch enthusiasts get a first-hand look at timepieces that will soon hit the market.
Standing outside the gantries and waiting for entry, I’m always confronted with the terrifying reality that humans were made with only two wrists. Believe me, if it became a social norm to wear two timepieces, I’d be on that bandwagon faster than you can say “Patek Philippe.”
Today, we break down our Top Five Picks of the first day of Baselworld.
Breitling SuperOcean Heritage Chronoworks
Imagine your timepiece as a car – if you’re going to subject it to the racetracks, you’re going to need some fine-tuning. Tuning your watch is where Breitling’s new Chronoworks Lab comes into the picture. This newly set up performance lab from the brand sees to upgrading Breitling’s chronometers to crazy levels.
This year, Chronoworks’ gift to watch enthusiasts is the Superocean Heritage Chronoworks. Limited to just 100 pieces, the watch is almost an entire overhaul of its original. A full black ceramic case (a first for Breitling) houses an enchanced B.01 movement that has had its escapement changed to silicon and several other changes. The result? A 45% gain of power reserve that now sits at 100 hours minimum. Another cool factor of the Superocean Heritage Chronoworks is the Milanese-like rubber strap that helps the watch sit perfectly on the wrist.
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Cosmograph Daytona
The most popular watch brand in the world celebrates 90 years of its Oyster watch, a waterproof timepiece that changed the game for both Rolex and generations of watch lovers. After several iterations, the Rolex Oyster has become a household name.
For 2016, Rolex unveiled a new version of the Oyster Perpetual Cosmograph Daytona in steel (this makes me unbelievably happy) with a monobloc black Cerachrom bezel. The new versions come in two variants – one with a white lacquer dial (as shown above) and one in a black lacquer dial.
TAG Heuer Heritage Monza
I am a sucker for re-editions and a sucker for black PVD cases, so colour me extremely broke this year. Thanks a lot, TAG Heuer.
Continuing on its successful trend of producing re-editions, TAG Heuer showed off its new Heritage Monza today, a watch that first came out in 1976. The latest version sees the same features like the pulsometer and tachymeter scale and my favourite, the pre-TAG logo for Heuer. With a titanium black PVD case instead of steel, the Heritage Monza is a lot lighter than previous versions and also larger at 42mm instead of 39.
Oris Artelier Calibre 112
The in-house capabilites of Oris as a watchmaker is truly on show in the brand’s latest addition to its Artelier collection. Building on the previous Calibres 110 and 111 that played with power reserves, the new Calibre 112 sees the addition of a second time zone sub-dial at 12 o’clock with an interesting day/night indication.
Still present (and still a favourite of mine) is Oris’ patented non-linear power reserve indicator at three o’clock on the dial. Instead of counting the 10 days down as linear, the indicator jumps from 10, 8, 6, 4 then 3, 2, 1. This method of presenting the energy left in the watch always struck me as clever because let’s be honest – who is going to wind their watch with more than five days of power reserve left?
Tudor Heritage Black Bay Dark
Whether you’re a fan of this year’s Bronze or Dark Heritage Black Bays, you’ve got to give it to Tudor – re-editions are fast becoming the brand’s specialty and the public wants more every year.
This year, the Black Bay Dark officially moves into my “List of Watches I’d Buy in a Heartbeat Should I Win the Lottery” thanks to the black PVD case that just brings the entire watch together. Couple that with the fact that powering this is Tudor’s own in-house, COSC-certified movement that boasts 70 hours of power reserve and you’ll realise why there’s a lot to like about the piece.