Tuesday, 31 January 2012

Angular Momentum - Montre Classique

Two-body 1.4435Cnu Staybrite stainless steel case, allover polished, 39.00 mm, stainless steel back with palladium coated hand-engraved silver medallion with floral design, crown with cabochon Onyx, mechanical historical hand-winding movement, caliber FHF 96, glossy black dial with white relief Roman numerals, Bâton hands.


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Monday, 30 January 2012

Porsche design's BaselWorld offering

Stuttgart/Grenchen. Beautiful form has had a name since 1972: Porsche Design. Forty years ago, Professor Ferdinand Alexander Porsche, who designed the legendary 911 sports car in 1963, founded his own design studio. It has since developed many lifestyle accessories, like watches, eyeglasses and writing implements, as well as sports and fashion collections, which are sold around the world under the Porsche Design brand. All these items share a functional and puristic formal language, a meticulous selection of materials, as well as high quality finishing that combines traditional crafts with state-of-the-art technology.
Ferdinand Alexander Porsche is the oldest son of Dorothea and Ferry Porsche, the founder of the sports car manufacture. He was born in Stuttgart, 11 December 1935. As a child already, "Butzi", as he was nicknamed, exhibited a great deal of creativity, designing and building his toys himself. In Stuttgart, he attended the Waldorf School and then went to the School of Design in Ulm. He then joined the construction office of Porsche KG, as it was called back then. In 1962, he was put in charge of the design studio, and the year following he presented the 911 model as the successor of the 356. In the 1960s, he authored all of the designs for sports and race cars, like the 904 GTS racer. As a family shareholder, he decided to retire from management of the sports car manufacture, and in 1972, Ferdinand Alexander Porsche founded his own design studio in Stuttgart. In 1974, he moved the company headquarters to Zell am See in (Austria), where the family had taken up residence since the war. Together with a team of designers, he devoted himself to creating a large number of products that balanced out function and form. In 1999, the Austria's president granted Ferdinand Alexander Porsche the title of "Professor".
In 1972, the first finished object to emerge from the newly established studio was a watch. It was an entirely black chronograph with white writing on the dial, white hands and a red stop-second hand. Those with an especially keen sense of observation recognised in the timepiece's design the austere colour scheme and the smaller dashboard instruments of the sports car, on whose interior Ferdinand Alexander Porsche had worked before leaving the company. The form is stark, simple and circular. Because the hands go around in a circle after all, which is what determines the optimal form. Since readability is a pivotal criterion at all times, maximum contrast wassought, hence the white hands on a black backdrop. With his completely black watch, the non-watchmaker Porsche managed to revolutionise the watch industry 40 years ago. Today, black watches are a trend at many other brands in addition to Porsche Design. This also applies to titanium and aluminium, materials that are mainly found in aviation, but that Porsche Design was the first to usein making watches, in 1980 and 2000 respectively. Before that, this luxury brand also became the first design company to build a watch with an integrated compass (1978). And 2004 saw the birth of the P'6910 Indicator, the world's first chronograph with a mechanical-digital display.In addition to watches, the Porsche Design portfolio has been enriched by many other items over the past decades, such as eyewear, high-end writing implements, luggage and leather accessories, smoking accessories, mobile phones, a sports and fashion collection and men's perfumes. The Porsche Design studio also elaborates objects for external clients, including hair/dryers, television sets, telephones, headphones, cameras, kitchen utensils, trams and cable cars, airplane interiors, musical instruments and even dentist chairs.Yet, in spite of many lucrative offers, there is one thing Ferdinand Alexander Porsche and the studio never touched again: automobiles.At Baselworld 2012, Porsche Design Timepieces will present an anniversary box to celebrate 40 years of designing tradition with three horological milestones: the P6510 Black Chronograph, the P6520 Compass Watch and the P6530 Titanium Chronograph.

The set is limited to 500 pieces.


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HANHART – Partnership with Kremer Racing

Since the beginning of the year, Hanhart has forged a partnership with Kremer

Racing as part of its involvement in classic motor racing. Like the Swiss-German

watch brand, the world’s most successful private Porsche racing team is also

celebrating a major anniversary in 2012. In addition to the team and vehicle

branding, a number of joint activities and appearances are planned for this


The Cologne-based sports car company and racing team “Kremer” were established in 1962 by the Kremer brothers, Erwin and Manfred. They soon started specializing in vehicles from the Porsche brand, and Kremer Racing Cologne became the first team to use the “911” model in international events.

The team celebrated a string of spectacular successes with its Porsche cars:

European Touring Car champion and winner of the 24 Hours of Spa in 1968, German motor racing champion in 1979, winner of the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 1979, and winner of the 24 Hours of Daytona in 1995, plus a grand total of eleven victories in the Porsche Cup, three in the European GT Championship and three in the Interseries Championship. In 1984, Kremer’s racing exploits and championship triumphs earned it the status of the first exclusive Porsche dealer in Germany.

In 2011, Kremer Racing enjoyed success in the VLN Endurance Racing Championship and the 24 Hours race at the Nürburgring with the latest Porsche GT3 Cup and a 911 GT3 KR model that had been newly developed in its own workshop. In a completely new departure for the team, Kremer also entered a Porsche in its first rally event: the Porsche 911 RS finished fifth overall in the Rallye Köln-Ahrweiler, Germany, claiming second place in its class and, not least, achieving the best performance for a Porsche. As the team marks its 50th anniversary in 2012, it is directing its focus even more strongly towards its core competence: building and maintaining classic racing cars, specializing in Porsche models, and actively participating in endurance racing events.

The partnership between Hanhart and Kremer Racing will allow two companies with a long and illustrious motor sporting tradition to work together. While Kremer Racing is celebrating 50 years of existence in 2012, Hanhart is commemorating its own foundation back in 1882, exactly 130 years ago. Under the aegis of Willy Hanhart, son of the company’s founder, the brand introduced the first affordable manual stopwatch in 1924. In the decades that followed, it produced further innovative developments such as the ultra-fast oscillator capable of recording measurements down to hundredths of a second. Right from the start, Hanhart’s mechanical timepieces have been an indispensable tool on every racing circuit in the world.

In an effort to continue its close relationship with motor racing, Hanhart is now actively involved in select sponsorship deals in motor sport and on the rally scene. Its partnership with Kremer Racing perfectly complements these activities and comprises both branding for the racing team and a range of joint publicity appearances.



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Sunday, 29 January 2012

Girard-Perregaux Vintage 1945 Large Date Moon-Phases

Contemporary vision of a timeless watch

At the same time classic and cutting-edge, the Vintage 1945 collection is a symbol of contemporary watchmaking that Girard-Perregaux has been careful to perfect. Taking its strong lines from the Art Deco movement, the new Vintage 1945 Large Date Moon-Phases incorporates an emblematic design. Its case, with its skilfully rounded shapes in both directions, houses a Girard-Perregaux mechanical movement with automatic winding that displays a large date and moon-phases on an equally curved dial. This contemporary piece is a resounding success in both aesthetic and technical terms.

Girard-Perregaux has made its mark on the history of timeless watches. For over 50 years, the Vintage 1945 collection has represented an inexhaustible source of inspiration for the Manufacture. Its strong design, alternation of lines and curves, and personality blending classicism with modernity have paved the way for unique creations. These include the legendary limited-edition Vintage 1945 Tourbillon with three gold Bridges featuring rhodium-plated skeletonised bridges. Remaining faithful to the spirit of the collection, Girard-Perregaux presents a new Vintage 1945 Large Date Moon-Phases that is in all respects tied to the essence of its predecessors. Its roots: a pure style, perfect symmetry and a Manufacture mechanical movement.

With its perfect circle and open case-back that displays the movement, the Vintage 1945 Large Date Moon-Phases perfectly embodies the spirit of the collection. All the time displays are harmoniously arranged and readable at a glance. At 12 o'clock, the instant large date displays the date on a pair of discs – one of which is transparent – in a patented system. It beats the tempo with a railway minute track that runs around the dial. The hands and applied Arabic numerals display the time with simplicity. The meticulously crafted curved hour markers are particularly delicate. Traditionally positioned at 6 o'clock, the raised moon-phases indicator is presented beneath a sky of perfect clarity.

Combining aesthetics with a beautiful mechanism is a golden rule at Girard-Perregaux. With its 282 components, the calibre Girard-Perregaux 03300-0062 features precision characteristics that are the Manufacture's own. Exceptionally reliable, it beats to a frequency of 28,800 vibrations per hour. The list of finishes resembles an anthology of ornamental High Watchmaking traditions: the rhodium-plated mainplate boasts circular diamond-polishing and circular-graining of the visible and non-functional areas. These preciously decorated bridges create a gentle harmony: circular diamond-polishing, circular-graining on the trottoir and Côtes de Genève decoration. The wheels are gilded, the pivots burnished and the drum of the barrel embellished with a sunray finish.

The Manufacture has turned to its expert craftsmanship in order to place its Art-Deco-spirited collection in the limelight once again. The Vintage 1945 Large Date Moon-Phases presents perfect classicism and unity between form, function and the nuances of the materials. It remains a true artistic icon, a worthy heir to Girard-Perregaux's unique history.


Technical specifications

Pink gold or steel case with anti-reflective sapphire crystal

Case-back closed with 4 screws with sapphire crystal

Dimensions: 36.10 mm x 35.25 mm

Water resistance: 30 metres

Crown: pink gold or steel with engraved GP logo

Girard-Perregaux 03300-0062 movement

Mechanical with automatic winding

Display: hours, minutes, small seconds, large date, moon-phases indicator

Dimensions: 11½''' x 12¾''' – 25.60 mm x 28.80 mm

Total height: 4.90 mm

Number of components: 282

Jewels: 32

Power reserve: minimum 46 hours

Winding: automatic, 5N18 gold oscillating weight on the pink gold model and bi-metallic on the steel model

Frequency: 28,800 vibrations / hour (4 Hz)

Black alligator strap

Folding clasp in pink gold or steel


Pink gold: 25882-52-121-BB6B

Steel: 25882-11-121-BB6B


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Saturday, 28 January 2012

Angular Momentum - Verre Églomisé

Angular Momentum has released a new collection of sparkling timepieces made of steel or gold and diamonds, diamond dust and black enamel.
Angular Momentum's Verre Églomisé technique of miniature painting on the reverse of a sapphire crystal was extended by a new technology, in which a watch sapphire crystal's back is set with an aperture for digital time display, diamonds and coarse diamond dust, embedded in black enamel. The effect might be described as "truly sparkling".
Angular Momentum has realized a collection of timepieces in steel and gold, decorated with above described sparkling digital sapphire crystals, a group of them displayed first time at Landolf & Huber Fine Jewelry in Zurich Switzerland.


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Friday, 27 January 2012

A few more minutes with Jean-Claude Biver

Jean Claude Biver was kind enough to share some thoughts following the announcement that he was stepping away from some of his current duties with the appointment of Ricardo Guadalupe as CEO.

And now, a few more minutes with Jean Claude Biver -

James Henderson: Retirement (albeit semi-retirement) is now upon you. Was there anything that triggered this decision at this time?

Jean Claude Biver: A successful entrepreneur has to achieve four quarter time. The first quarter is the Learning process (1975-1982 for me) the second one is the Action (1982-2012) the third one is the Transmission (which has just started for me and I hope it will last till 2016) and the fourth one is the Departure (this should take one year).

I had planned for about 18 months that 2012 should be the start of my third quarter time and should become my new challenge. Any entrepreneur who can go successfully complete the four quarter time can claim that he was successful during his career. I hope that this will also be the case for me.

JH - You are, in many ways, one of the last of the "Young Turks" who reinvented the mechanical watch industry in the 80s and 90s. You have had your hand on some of the most impressive brand revivals of any industry. Is Hublot really the last stop?

JCB - Yes, I believe that Hublot is the last stop, because I doubt I will find the energy to start one more adventure. I also believe that if you have had three successful experiences in your life you should rather say thank you and try to transmit you knowledge rather than trying to achieve a fourth success.

JH - You have achieved something without parallel with Hublot, taking what was essentially an marketing/assembler and turning it into one of the most important watch manufactures in the industry. So clearly, you understand what it takes not only to survive, but to thrive. Can the watch industry Swiss and otherwise, continue on in the same fashion?

JCB - Yes, the Swiss Watch Industry will continue to innovate, to be creative and to dominate the world market - provided they continue to master the quality and the quantities produced.

JH - With Mr. Guadalupe, it seems that Hublot is in very capable hands. We all know about the NOW, but let's go back. How did you two meet originally?

JCB - I met him during my Blancpain days when he was in the purchase and logistic department of Bulgari watches. I hired him for that job and after having handled purchasing with success along with logistics at Blancpain we also gave him the responsibility for Production, then also Marketing and finally also Sales, which made Ricardo a real Managing Director of Blancpain. He is one of the rare young managers who knows and understands all the departments of a watch brand.

JH - It is clear that you hold Ricardo Guadalupe in very high regard. I've written about "Biveresequa", but what is "Guadalupesequa"?

JCB - Give Ricardo a few years before you can identify the "Guadalupesequa".

JH- So now you are still, in many ways, the chief evangelist of Hublot - so what is the message? Has it changed?

JCB - I am still the "chief evangelist" of Hublot and will never lose this role as long as I am close to Hublot. The message of Hublot is not changing with the management. Management is there to communicate and defend the message, not to change the message.

JH - When I first interviewed you in 2010, I asked you about any instances in the past where things hadn't turned out the way that you'd hoped. I am sorry to press you now, but can you think of a specific instance where things went "pear shaped" and how you recovered?

JCB - No, I have no such example of anything that hadn't turned out the way I have hoped, except my health, which suddenly became more fragile in the last 9 months.

JH - Thinking back on all of your time in the industry, there must have been one - what is your baby - the favorite creation? Yes - you can only pick one!

JCB - My favorite creation is usually and most of the time the last one! But if one should be the most important, it would clearly be the hour and minute I saw the first prototype of the Big Bang in January 2005.

JH - What is wrong with the watch industry now?

JCB - Not much can be wrong, as the Swiss Watch Industry has never been so active, so innovative and so successful as today

JH - What is right with the watch industry now?

JCB - What is certainly a big asset today, is the huge innovation, R&D, and heavy industrialization and verticalization of our industry. What is also right are the number of apprentice we are welcoming every year in our industry and the numbers of kids that are attending the Watchmaking Schools.

JH - Looking back to when you started, do you have an "I wish I knew then what I know now" moment to share?

JCB - No, when I started I would have been happy and would have signed to achieve 10% of what I have achieved. Every defeat, every failure, every doubt, every deception only helped me to escalate the steps and come closer to success.

JH - What are your new duties with Hublot?

JCB - As Chairman I have to control and implement the global strategy of the Brand, the Product and R&D strategy and be the spokesperson or ambassador of the Brand

JH - So, "semi-retirement", what are some of the things you've been putting off that you will be picking up now?

JCB - I will travel less, but spend more time with people in the brand helping them to improve themselves and transmitting them my knowledge and my experience.

JH - I would ask for "final words" but judging from your previous track record - I might be profiling you again before the "ink" dries on this interview. Your success is not accidental, so again - what advice do you have for those out there hoping to emulate your success?

JCB - A part of my success is due to my passion. With passion you can climb over any summit. Another important part of my success is due to my team, which is a Dream Team and probably the best team of the watch industry. Another part of my success is my ethic behavior which is build on Sharing, Forgiving and Respecting.


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The latest from Richard Mille


At last week’s SIHH watch fair in Geneva, RICHARD MILLE debuted a new skeletonized tourbillon split seconds chronograph movement, which is the engine inside a new limited edition timepiece.

RM 056 Tourbillon Split Seconds Competition Chronograph Felipe Massais a limited edition of five pieces.

The case is made entirely of sapphire crystal, which required more than 1,000 hours to machine from solid blocks of crystal.

The highly skeletonized RM 056 movement reproduces all the characteristics of the RMCC1 caliber, a manual winding tourbillon movement with hours, minutes, chronograph split seconds, power reserve, torque and function indicators.


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Wednesday, 25 January 2012

DE BETHUNE - The ninth Mayan underworld

The symbolic advent of a new world

The ninth step of the Bolon Yokte Ku, the cosmic pyramid of the Mayan civilisation, symbolises the advent of a new world, the ninth underworld, according to which the evolution of consciousness is believed to reach its highest level.

On the occasion of humankind’s symbolic passage into this new underworld predicted by the Mayan calendar, De Bethune presents an exceptional 12-piece edition in tribute to the scholarly traditions of this people.

Renowned for its technical and artistic innovations, the Manufacture De Bethune is building 21st century horology while remaining true to the history of science and art.

The desire to portray the epic adventure of humankind through all its many cultures represented a fascinating challenge for the De Bethune team, which has sought to recreate the deep atmosphere of the ceramics and stones sculpted by the Mayan scribes. The solid gold dial of these timepieces has been hand-engraved by Michèle Rothen, and enhanced by 31 flame-blued steel inserts. The hour circle displays the numerals of Mayan numbering system, while the inner ring presents the 20 glyphs of divinities, animals and sacred objects representing the various days of the calendar.

The dial centre features the baktun, a period glyph used in particular for calculating the “Long Count” and comprising 144,000 days.

In order to highlight the subtle visual equilibrium of the dial, the hands are made in sapphire rimmed with blued steel according to an exclusive De Bethune procedure.

The Mayan scholarly tradition, partially re-transcribed in the manifestos or codices dealing mostly with astral sciences, testify to a strong interest and a genuine fascination for long periods, dates, and remote events both past and future. The Mayan scholars devised a sophisticated arithmetical system mainly composed of period glyphs and numerical glyphs, associated with signs and hierarchized for the “Long Count” of lengthy periods of time.

With its feet firmly planted in history and its head turned to the future in building tomorrow’s watchmaking, De Bethune offers its own distinctive celebration of the mystical and scientific Mayan genius, and the symbolic advent of a new world.

Functions: hours - minutes

Movement: Calibre DB 2005 – mechanical hand-wound

Mainplate hand-decorated and snailed, hand-chamfered and polished steel parts, De Bethune stripes

Self-regulating twin barrel*

Silicon/platinum balance wheel*

Triple shock-absorbing system*

Jewelling: 29 jewels

Frequency: 28,800 vibrations per hour

Power reserve: 6-day power reserve

Case Drum measuring 44 mm in diameter in white gold with hollowed lugs

Thickness: 12.50 mm

Glass: sapphire crystal, 1800 Vickers with double anti-reflective treatment

Crown at 3 o’clock – adjustment in 2 positions

Exhibition back: sapphire crystal with double anti-reflective treatment

Dial in solid gold hand-engraved by Michèle Rothen and composed of three parts:

outer ring with numerical glyphs in flame-blued steel

inner ring composed of 20 different glyphs symbolising divinities, animals or sacred objects

central part representing a period glyph, the baktun comprising 144,000 days

Hands in sapphire rimmed with flame-blued steel

Strap : extra-supple alligator leather with pin buckle

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Night Vision by TechnoMarine

A pre-Basel treat from TechnoMarine! See the video here:


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Tuesday, 24 January 2012

Vulcain Cricket Aviator GMT “The Dragon”

In Chinese mythology, the five-clawed dragon is the prerogative of the Emperor and his family. The finely enamelled dial of this Vulcain Aviator GMT “The Dragon” depicts this powerful symbol embodying cosmic energy and movement.

A fiery gaze, shimmering scales coating a long, supple body, a fierce mouth, a tapering crest: the dragon on the Vulcain Aviator GMT “The Dragon” undulates proudly over the dial of this exclusive limited-edition model. To honour the ancient culture of the “Middle Empire”, the brand from Le Locle calls upon the talent of the most skilled artisans.

As a Manufacture whose history is closely bound up with the finest watchmaking traditions, Vulcain confirms its expertise in the art of enamelling, a demanding technique calling for age-old know-how. A past master in this field, the brand uses the distinctive cloisonné enamel technique to create small partitioned receptacles in which the glass powder and metal oxides composing the enamel are placed. To bind this substance to the dial, the artisan heats the piece at an extreme temperature –a sensitive and risky operation in its own right. The partially uncertain and unpredictable nature of the process results a model that is totally unique in terms of its luminous reflections and the play on colours.

Behind this dial, a masterpiece of fine craftsmanship, beats the specially decorated and rhodium-plated Calibre V-13 alarm movement. The latter is endowed with a 42-hour power reserve thanks to its twin barrels. In addition to the hour, minute and seconds functions, the Vulcain Aviator GMT “The Dragon” displays world time on a 24-hour scale, adjustable by a screw-locked crown at 4 o’clock and a mechanical alarm which rings for 20 seconds. Once set off, the sound is effectively diffused by a double case-back acting as a resonance chamber. The 18-carat rose gold 42 mm-diameter case is guaranteed water-resistant to 330 feet. The Vulcain Aviator GMT “The Dragon” is produced in a limited edition of 30.

Ref : 100508.181L
18K pink gold- "The Dragon" cloisonné enamel dial – Black Alligator strap
Case : 18K pink gold
Case Dimensions : Diameter 42.00 mm - Length 51.00 mm - Height 14.45 mm
Dial : Cloisonné enamel « The Dragon » 30 pieces Limited Edition
Calibre : Vulcain Cricket V-13 - 12’’’ hand wound mechanical alarm
Frequency : 18'000 vibrations / hour
Rubies : 17
Power Reserve: 42 hours
Alarm Duration : 15 to 20 seconds
Crystal : domed shape sapphire, glare proofed
Water-Resistance : 100 meters/330 feet
Strap : Alligator leather – Strap dimensions: 22/18 mm
Buckle : 18K pink gold, pin type
Vulcain Cricket Calibre V-13

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Monday, 23 January 2012

Aerowatch Les Grandes Classiques Venus 203

For over 100 years, AEROWATCH has safeguarded an enviable global reputation as a maker of

extraordinary timepieces. AEROWATCH continues this remarkable heritage with the limited edition

launch of the "Les Grandes Classiques Venus 203" collection. The new line exemplifies the

company's corporate culture, which stands for top-flight creations and timeless elegance.

The new "Les Grandes Classiques Venus 203" portfolio showcases a watch with a graceful balance

between technical finesse and aesthetic appeal. With a diameter of 41 mm, the exceptional

timepiece embodies all the attributes of true watchmaking artistry, perfectly uniting functionality

and design. The subtly textured dial epitomizes the sleek and uncluttered styling of the watch in a

mystical way, highlighting its baton hour markers and hands. Clarity reigns with the moon-phase

indication at 6 o'clock as well as the day and month displays just beneath the maker's mark in the top

half of the dial. The polished, screwed case underscores the noble lineage of this fine timekeeping


For watch enthusiasts, the inner life of this classic and timeless stainless steel watch is a feast for the

eyes. The observation of the heartbeat of the famous Swiss movement through the display back is an

endearing experience. Developed by Ateliers Venus SA in Moutier during the 1950s, the beautifully

decorated caliber remains a paragon of Swiss horological artisanship.

Limited to a series of 300 watches, this rare masterpiece comes with a supple leather strap in black

or brown with a fold-over clasp.

Jean-SeÅLbastien Bolzli, who is responsible for marketing and sales, says: "For the first time in our

company's history, we have the opportunity to proudly present a watch with a Venus 203 caliber.

Our objective was to debut a timepiece that harmoniously combines traditional watchmaking

prowess with contemporary panache, reflecting the creativity at the core of our company's passion.

We are very satisfied with the result. And the fact that the price/performance ratio is right

corresponds to our company philosophy."

AEROWATCH – Les Grandes Cassiques Venus 203

Limited Edition – Ref. A 93955 AA01

• Hand-winding movement 11 1/2’’’ Venus 203 produced in 1950

• 17 Jewels - 18'000 vibrations per hour

• Numbered rhodium-plated movement with “Co^tes de Gene`ve”

• Hour, minute and small second display at 6 o’clock

• Complete calendar with moon phases indication at 6

• Power Reserve of 38 hours

• Stainless steel case- diameter 41,00mm

• Transparent sapphire case-back, with 6 screws

• Silvered dial “sun-brushed” with polished index and hands

• Domed sapphire crystal

• Water-resistant to 50 meters

• Brown leather strap with personalised steel clasp

• Limited edition of 300 pieces

• Price CHF / EURO upon request


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