Jewellery editor NATASHA SHERLING shares a sneak peek of the LUXURY WATCHES to look out for this autumn winter …
Every year, the best and most beautiful advances in timekeeping are show off at Basel, Switzerland. It’s where trade and press go to see the newest watches, before they are rolled out to the public over the rest of the year.
In the last week, the Irish public have been lucky enough to get a preview too – as three of the biggest names in watchmaking brought their collections to Dublin for a sneak peek. Patek Philippe hosted an intimate dinner and exhibition in conjunction with Boodles at The Merrion Hotel, while Rolex and Tudor set up a special display at Weir & Sons, in advance of the official launch of their new models in the autumn. It was a super opportunity to see the connection between these two brands; Tudor was started by the founder of Rolex and although they now operate separately, they still share a similar aesthetic direction as well as detail in their movements – as can be seen between the new Rolex GMT Master II Pepsi Bezel (above) and the Tudor Black Bay (below).
Rolex and Weir & Sons have a particularly great partnership; the jeweller also has an in-house Rolex workshop, as well as a dedicated polisher and polishing room. This is a real bonus for those looking to invest in a high calibre timepiece – those already in possession of one know that repairs can prove a mild nightmare, as most watches need to be sent abroad for servicing. Ireland simply doesn’t have the accredited craftspeople required by most brands to deal with their complicated movements.
Speaking of complicated movements, Patek Philippe are at the top of their game; their watchmaking skills are second to none and their models hold their value better than nearly any other brand on the market. They are much sought after by collectors; one watch I was playing with had six patents on its movements alone. Interestingly, during the private view in Dublin, Boodles’ James Amos happened to mention that Irish women are now really showing an interest in the inner workings of these watches; before, the movements were stereotypically (and like all these things, somewhat unfairly) a man’s game. The chronograph I had my keen eye on was actually developed as a ladies’ model before being supersized for a more manly wrist – with movements made in house, some parts were produced on machines over 100 years old, which really boggles the mind. The concept of watchmaking in itself has always been so technically advanced – long before any computer chips were ever invented. It would be remiss of me to say, however, that I wasn’t also dazzled by the diamonds not just on the dial (seventy two, to be precise), but on the buckle as well (twenty seven, but who’s counting).
All these new models will start to trickle in store from August/September – so if you missed them in the last week, keep a keen eye out to take a look up close just in time for the new season.
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