As more and more watch brands turn to their archives for inspiration, we are witnessing a subtle but luxurious return of the pocket watch. Take note: These are not your grandfather’s pocket watches. Today’s pieces are ultramodern and feature high-tech mechanical movements, artistic elegance, and in some cases convertible convenience to double as a wristwatch.
BEAUTY AND VERSATILITY
A remarkable work of art and sophistication, the Bovet Amadeo Fleurier Virtuoso VII timepiece is an easily convertible pocket watch, wrist- watch, and table clock. Additionally, it is two-sided, offering different information and functions—as well as extraordinarily different looks—on each side. The reversible watch is powered by the 489-part Dimier 1738 hand-wound Caliber Virtuoso II and offers a perpetual calendar with month and leap year indications, as well as a retrograde date indicator; patented sub-seconds; reversed hand-fitting of the hours, minutes, and seconds; and a five-day power reserve indicator. One dial displays the hours, minutes, seconds, power reserve indication, and perpetual calendar, which is accurate for 400 years before needing an adjustment. The second dial of the watch offers hours and minutes and provides a full view of the meticulously engraved and finished movement. The seconds’ chassis is a patented mechanism developed by Bovet that allows the seconds to be displayed on the same axis on both sides of the movement (so on both dials). Offered in rose gold or in white gold, the Amadeo Fleurier Virtuoso VII can also be personalized to meet the requests of collectors. Price as shown: $72,500.
AROUND THE WORLD
In an incredibly deft blend of history and visionary craftsmanship, Montblanc celebrates its 110th anniversary with the limited-edition (just eight timepieces) Montblanc Collection Villeret Tourbillon Cylindrique Pocket Watch 110 Years Edition. Inspired by the ocean liners that crossed the Atlantic in the early 20th century, when the brand was young, the series represents the highest level of traditional craftsman- ship, from watchmaking to engraving and enameling. The choice of eight pieces is a reference to the year the Montblanc Manufacture in Villeret (the former Minerva Manufacture) was founded—1858—and where the new watches are made. The complex, 281-part hand-wound MB M68.40 movement boasts a one-minute tourbillon, world time, and triple time zone indications. The three-dimensional globes are finely painted in relief and engraved, depicting the continents, longitude and latitude lines, seas and oceans. They also offer the 24 key time zone cities of the Northern and Southern hemispheres, and indicate day and night. A slice of aventurine provides a dramatic backdrop to the tourbillon escapement at 6:00, accenting its ever-moving beauty. Price on request.
Sometimes the beauty of a pocket watch has to do with its traditional elegance and sublime finish. Such is the case with this 44.55mm Blancpain Montre de Poche Demi-Savonnette pocket watch. Crafted in 18-karat 5N rose gold, the watch houses a hand-wound movement, caliber 151B, with 40 hours of power reserve. It offers hours and minutes, as well as a small subsidiary seconds dial. The entire dial and subdial are created using Grand Feu enamel for the white background as well as the numerals. The inside of the caseback is decorated in a special motif, and the 117-part movement —visible via a transparent sapphire caseback—is entirely hand decorated, engraved, and finished. $64,500.
A master at artistic innovation, Jaquet Droz regularly unveils pocket watches in its luxury repertoire. This Grande Seconde Pocket Watch Paillonnée is a stunning example of technical prowess and artistic grace. The 50mm 5N 18-karat rose gold case is thin enough to sit comfortably in a suit pocket. It features a hand-painted dial that is made of 18-karat yellow gold paillons with red Grand Feu enamel painting that forms a patterned motif. The subdials are silver opaline. The pocket watch is powered by the Jaquet Droz 2615 hand-wound mechanical movement, and offers off-center hours and minutes and a large seconds subdial for a truly dramatic appeal. The watch has 40 hours of power reserve. It is sold with an 18-karat 5N rose gold chain. Just eight pieces are being made in red enamel and eight pieces in blue enamel. $47,300.