Baselworld starts today. This means over the next week we’ll be racking up a list of our favorite luxury timepieces and must-haves for the year. And there are some stunning works to watch out for this season. Press previews over the last few months have given us a pretty good idea of what trends to expect at the Swiss event, and we have to admit that we’d like to get our hands on some of these timepieces sooner rather than later. Baselworld 2015 will see return of the moonphase and skeleton dial, and new trends like integrated natural elements, ancient histories regaled upon a watch face, irregular cases, and an abundance of smart watches. Below are just a few examples of what you’ll see in the coming week.
Photo Credit:Ulysse Nardin
The latest from Ulysse Nardin is the Répétition Minutes Hannibal Westminster Carillon Tourbillon Jaquemarts, a piece that brings history to life with the retelling of Hannibal’s march over the Pyrenees and Alps in the third century B.C. Here, Hannibal and his men are reincarnated in white gold and set in Alpine granite. The figures move throughout the day and the spinning tourbillion at the six o’clock hour marks the Swiss time-keeping craftsmanship found in this work of art. This piece is part of a 30-piece limited series.
Artya’s Son of Earth Farfalla combines precise mechanics with the beauty of nature in a piece that uses golf-leaf enriched, genuine butterfly wings to create the iridescent dial. Designed by artist Dominique Arpa-Cirpka, the color is intended to change shades throughout the day and, as with every Artya creation, customers are welcome to personalize the hands and case. Despite its delicate nature, the timepiece is water resistant up to 50 meters and houses a 42-hour power reserve. The wing rests within a stainless steel enclosure with sapphire front and back, and the black leather strap is hand-sewn.
Photo Credit:Van Der Bauwede
Inspired by the 1968 film The Thomas Crown Affair, Van Der Bauwede's VDB Legend T. Crown Tourbillon offers a unique watch face that seems to warp between the eight and 10 o’clock hours, twisting the face around. Three complications are seen on the dial: the tourbillion, the power-reserve indicator and date. Coming in three limited-edition shades—steel with petroleum blue, Colorado brown or anthracite grey—the timepiece features an engraved and numbered open back, and crocodile leather strap.
Longines’ Conquest Classic Moonphase draws upon the brand’s long history as a timekeeper of world championships, most notably in equestrian sports. Inspired by this tradition of elegance, this timepiece comes enclosed in an 18-karat, pink-gold casing and anti-reflective sapphire crystal. Inside, the automatic chronograph runs on a L678 caliber with 25 jewels and 48-hour power reserve. The day and month display sit at the 12 o’clock hour, while the seconds tick around a smaller dial at the nine o’clock hour. At the bottom sits the moonphase with crescent window displaying the moon and stars.
Photo Credit:MB & F
Definitely the least traditional piece we’ve seen so far, MB & F’s HM3 MegaWind Final Edition is not for the faint of heart. The mechanics almost take a backseat to design, but they should be noted as the 270 piece, three-dimensional mechanical automatic features a Sowind oscillator and gear train, 36 jewels, 28,800 vib/h, and hour and minute indications transmitted by ceramic bearings. But the surface is what really captures our attention. The case is black PVD-treated 18-karat gold, and the rotor is blackened 22-karat gold with titanium accents. The 3D hour and minute dials sit on the right face of the watch while the “battle axe” rotor swings back and forth, visible through the anti-reflective, sapphire crystal casing.