Remember, remember, the fifth of November. If you are expecting fireworks, well, you’re going to be disappointed, but this week we have three watches that nail the current trend for colourful timepieces. Yes, white dials are just too boring, colour is king and even the more rarefied brands are outdoing themselves in this regard.
FP Journe is the critics’ darling and beloved by collectors, and with the Chronomètre Holland & Holland, the Swiss brand is entering new territory. The timepiece is the first official collaboration for the watchmaker (with British gunmaker Holland & Holland), its first two-hand watch (its most minimalist dial ever) and, finally, its first 39mm watch in steel.
Founder François-Paul Journe, on a visit to Hong Kong recently, told me he is not into shooting himself, so the collaboration with a gunmaker might seem eccentric but I’m guessing he was won over by the use of two antique Damascus steel Holland & Holland barrels (from 1868 and 1882, respectively) to make the brown dials, which are complemented by a classic brown leather strap. Inside is a calibre 1304 movement and the view from the back is wonderful.
Given the use of antique gun barrels, the watch is limited to a run of 66 and priced at 45,000 Swiss francs (HK$352,000).
Blue, the midnight version in particular, has been a strong colour trend in watches for a while now and long may it continue. There are plenty of stunners but I’ve taken a shine to the Panerai Luminor Due 3 Days Automatic Titanio.
Panerai is a cult brand and the samey-samey design and large sizes aren’t for everyone but with this blue rendition of the Luminor Due 3 Days, the Italian watchmaker is broadening its appeal. It’s still massive at 45mm and it also wears and feels big due to the thick case and crown guard, but the design is clean and simple and the use of blue leather makes it a great dress-watch option.
At HK$81,500, the price is tempting, too; it’s not the cheapest Panerai, of course, but given the colour and the three-day power reserve, it’s certainly competitive.
Lastly, we are going black on black with the latest, and greatest, version of the Girard-Perregaux Laureato.
I can’t stress enough how much I love the Laureato since the Swiss brand decided to revive it last year, but the black-on-black 42mm ceramic update is a show-stopper.
It’s a masculine watch with the industrial-looking octagonal bezel, but with the use of ceramic and the colour scheme making it all very sleek and elegant. The ceramic bracelet and case make the piece scratchproof, so it can be used as an everyday watch. A simple piece with a date function, inside is the GP01800-0025 movement with 54 hours of power reserve.
The Laureato 42mm Ceramic Black is priced at HK$119,400.