For those who love to travel, love a luxurious sports watch and want a collectible timepiece, pay attention. Later this month, Vacheron Constantin is officially unveiling the new World Time Overseas watch –but we are bringing details and images now. The watch is a first in many important ways, not the least of which is that it holds the Geneva Seal – attesting to the brand’s quality craftsmanship. Additionally, the watch sports a Manufacture movement and marks the first time the Overseas Collection has a world time watch in its fold.
You may recall that earlier this year at the SIHH, Vacheron Constantin unveiled its newly revamped Overseas Collection. The sports watch line (designed by Jorg Hysek and launched first in 1977) has not been re-vitalized in more than a decade, so its new aesthetics and technical improvements were long awaited – and did not disappoint. As seen then, the revamped luxe sport line consists of a three-hands ($19,900 in steel), a ladies watch with nearly a full carat of diamonds, a chronograph (always the star of the show), an ultra-thin and – at the high end in 18-karat white gold, a $91,000 Ultra-Thin Perpetual Calendar Overseas.
Now, the alluring World Time Overseas rounds out the complexities and focuses on what Vacheron Constantin wants the watch to be: a true timepiece for today’s modern traveler. The watch offers time in 37 zones – accounting for the world’s unusual half-hour and 15-minute offsets. The 43.5mm watch, powered by a self-winding movement with solid pink gold rotor, is being offered in a choice of three different dial colors: blue, silver, chocolate brown. (In fact, Vacheron Constantin has just also announced that each of the Overseas watches will be offered with a choice of chocolate brown dial.)
One of the key elements that make the new World Time watch so entrancing is its exceptional dial. It is actually a composite of three parts that come together – super-imposed to offer a wealth of information. In the center there is a map of the continents and the oceans, around which a translucent lacquered disk bears the names of the 37 key cities. A third disk – a sapphire overlay above the map—offers day/night indications synchronized with the 24-hour disk.
The 255-part movement, designed and built in house, is the patented, self-winding Caliber 2460 WT. Beating at 28,800 vibrations per hour, it offers 40 hours of power reserve. Its 22-karat rose gold oscillating weight bears a wind rose indicative of the compass points. Like all of the other new Overseas watches, the World Time is equipped with a new bracelet featuring an easy-fit system that allows for interchangeable straps. It is sold with a bracelet, and with a rubber and alligator strap (except for the women’s 18-karat rose gold version, which is sold with a rubber and alligator strap or with the solid 18-karat rose gold bracelet).There is a patent pending for the strap system.
Also making the timepiece special is the fact that it has a soft iron inner casing ring that ensures anti-magnetism, and its screwed-down crown offers water resistance to 150 meters. Like the other Overseas watches, though, it is equipped with a transparent sapphire caseback that allows for viewing of the meticulously finished movement. It should be noted that having a transparent caseback on a watch that is water resistant to such depths is highly unusual and attests to the technical prowess of the brand. The World Time Overseas retails for $37,000.
To underscore the modern traveler theme of the World Time Overseas watch, Vacheron Constantin also hired famed photographer Steve McCurry to travel to a dozen locations around the globe and capture the sights in his own unique perspective. The images taken on his Overseas Tour to the first six of those locations will be on exhibit in New York at the official unveiling of the World Time watch later this month. The first six locations include New York (Grand Central), Geneva (the Vacheron Constantin manufacture), Mexico (Padre Tembleque), India (Chand Baori), China (Leshan) and Japan (Tsuronoyu).
M.C. Curry’s embracement of the “Spirit of Travel” for the brand is a host of stirring images that conjure beauty, nature, architecture, and humanity. Each has its own reason for being that ranges from time for enchantment to time for serenity, movement and more.
At the Vacheron Constantin Manufacture, where McCurry focuses on Time for Inspiration, he takes a close look at the creativity of the brand and its watchmakers. The Manufacture, recently enlarged by Swiss architect Bernard Tschumi, reflects interplay of space, materials, and lines – much like the brand’s timepieces.
According to McCurry, “You find yourself facing this incredible shape, this architecture, this singular design that is also an authentic work of art, a concrete example of human genius. I see it as a perfect match between beauty and precision. Admiring the Manufacture Vacheron Constantin is like setting off on an extraordinary voyage.”
All Overseas watches will make their way to stores this August/September. We will bring you more on the images of McCurry and the theme of the Overseas collection next month.