Well that was an expensive few months. Christmas, New Year, Lunar New Year and, lest we forget, the money drainer that is Valentine's Day, has no doubt left many a wallet lighter. Time to economise a little, perhaps, cut down on the nights out and shop at Wellcome rather than City'super. Before you decide to shun that next watch purchase in favour of another gym membership (come on, who are you kidding?), however, stop and consider a timepiece for less than HK$10,000. There are more gems in this range than you might have thought.
Trendsetters and hipsters have long loved Matthew Waldman's watch designs, with the former Seiko man achieving a cult following for his New York brand, Nooka. The latest Nooka Zex (above left) has a certain "zex" appeal, its oversized and stainless-steel case coming with a unique mineral crystal dial configuration. The case is the dominating aspect of this watch, measuring 53mm in diameter and oozing masculinity. It's round but, within the main band of the case, is the hexagonal inlay that gives the watch its name (hex = zex) and is the most noticeable feature. The dial configuration is arranged in by-now standard Nooka quirkiness, with minutes counted on the lower strip and hours by a circle of dots.
Something of a departure from other Nooka watches, the Zex comes with an Italian leather strap instead of the usual rubber. The Nooka Zex is priced at HK$2,600.
This year has been a busy one so far for Hong Kong brand Void, which has released a slew of V03 iterations. The latest, the V03C (above right), is the most feature-heavy Void ever created and a good illustration of how the brand has picked up its game recently. Featuring a chronograph and date function, the V03C is all about minimalist design, with a clean dial and marine clock elements. The dial features three subdials that measure minutes, 24 hours and 1/20 of a second. The case comes in stainless steel and measures a classic 38mm, with a thickness of 10mm. The movement is a battery-powered Japanese Miyota, so accuracy and reliability are assured and the watch comes with a crocodile leather strap. The Void V03C is priced at HK$3,450 and also comes in an all-black version.
Finally we have the TW Steel CEO Tech CE4002 David Coulthard Edition (left). Likely to appeal to petrol-heads, this CE4002 is a tribute to Scottish Formula One driver David Coulthard, proud owner of the squarest jaw in motor racing. A hefty chronograph watch, at 48mm, the CE4002 is all about being noticed, what with its menacing grey case and busy dial face. The face features three subdials, which measure minutes, seconds and 24 hours, as well as a date window, between the four and five o'clock positions. The bezel is PVD dark titanium, coated for that little touch of luxury, and the strap is grey Italian leather. The CE4002 is powered by a Miyota chrono movement and the watch is water resistant to 100 metres.
That there aren't any major, or even minor, design details that signify Coulthard may disappoint DC fans but the watch has other overtly sporty credentials. The TW Steel CEO Tech CE4002 David Coulthard Edition is priced at HK$7,640.