On 27 October 1815, Abraham Louis Breguet was named “Watchmaker to the Royal Navy” by Louis XVIII, King of France.
This title was the most prestigious at the time especially when the very notion of maritime watchmaking called for outstanding knowledge and excellent scientific skills. A watchmaker worth his salt would be able to give his King the tools to conquer the seven seas.
Displaying a world map on the dial against a tempestuous ocean rendered with guilloché techniques, the Breguet Hora Mundi 5557 follows a long lineage of marine chronometers, featuring modern style combining elegance and sportiness.
First seen in the Classique ref. 5717 in 2011, the calibre 77F1 is home to a practical complication that will delight globetrotters. Protected by four patents, the movement with a prodigious mechanical computer that calculates the time and date across the globe via an intricate system of cams, hammers and an integrated differential is easily one of the most complex GMT watches in the world yet the friendliest to use.
During the golden age of exploration, fleets of the greatest pioneers sailed across the high-seas equipped with a Breguet timekeeping system. Today, you get to keep time across the world with an ingenious GMT watch exhibiting a technical twist that lets you switch back and forth between two time zones at the push of a button.
Look Ma, Two Hands, Two Timezones
GMT watches tend to feature multiple hands which to some, mar the aesthetic of an otherwise aesthetically balanced timepiece. Taking three years to develop, follows function on the Hora Mundi 5557. Featuring an instant-change dual-time display with memory function, the 5557 is able to avoid having multiple hands and keep only to the essential hour, minute and sweeping seconds hands.
This feat is accomplished via the pusher and crown. Having selected the first cities time and date, the owner of the watch need only set the second city. The calibre 77F1 is able to calculate the time and date across the world. This then allows the user to travel around the world, all without disturbing the accurate running of the watch by simply pressing the pusher.
In short, the Hora Mundi 5557’s central hands not only indicate local time but also indicate reference time on demand with date window and the day/night indicator also changing accordingly. Wherever you were in the world, simply pull out and turn the crown at 8 o’clock to your destination city, and then by pressing the pusher, the calibre 77F1 automatically makes all the necessary calculations, instantaneously jumping time and date while letting you know if its morning or night.
The World In Your Hands
An engine-turned (hand-guilloché) blue background of waves is rendered on a gold base dial while an additional plate made of sapphire is composed of the metallised meridians and the continents are treated to horizontal satin brushing, while their coastlines are subtly outlined with a metallic turquoise border.
Symmetry on the dial is achieved with mirroring arched rectangular date window at 12 o’clock balanced against a larger arched city window at 6 o’clock. The hand-hammered rose gold Sun and rhodium-plated Moon appears at 4 o’clock reminiscent of how our neighbouring planetary bodies are rendered on astrolabes and terrestrial globes.
Simply put, the Hora Mundi 5557 Breguet’s aesthetic codes and horological prowess joined with his maritime spirit.
Breguet Hora Mundi 5557
PRICE + SPECS
Case 43.9mm 18k white or rose gold with 100 metres of water resistance
Movement Automatic calibre 77F1 with 55 hours of power reserve
Price CHF 71,00