Ah, Mid-Autumn is upon us! Now, given the occasion the orthodox move here would have been a lunar-themed watch column, you know, moon-phase timepieces, that sort of thing. But, being a maverick I’m consistently inconsistent, shooting from the hip and zagging where others expect me to zig … Actually, the truth is I totally forgot the holiday was coming and I played my moon-watch card a few weeks back like a rank amateur. This week, just to underline the lack of planning, there’s no real theme beyond three new watches that caught my eye and we start proceedings with the Bell & Ross BR05, which is not only a new watch but an entirely new collection. I’m going to try and contain the hyperbole here but this watch has shot into my top 10 for the year, possibly even top five, as it hits so many of my design predilections: the masculine industrial styling of the case that has shades of the 1970s; the use of steel; the integrated strap, which is another throwback; and the new spin of the brand’s signature square dial. The lead watch in a new collection has to be strong and this is more than that, it has the makings of a classic. Yes, the BR05 leans heavily on its influences – there’s a dash of the Audemars Piguet Royal Oak here, a pinch of the Patek Philippe Nautilus and a soupçon of the Girard Perregaux Laureato – but all great things build on other great things. Am I over selling this? Probably. But if you’re into industrial retro pieces and can’t spring for an AP, then this is a more than worthy alternative. Inside the 40mm case is a BR-CAL.321 automatic movement. Features include a date window and 100 metres of water resistance. The BR05 comes with either a rubber strap (HK$35,900/US$4,590) or a steel one (HK$39,900) and there are three dial colour options (blue, grey and black). OK, I’ve gushed a little too hard over the BR05, but I have let my eyes wander and size up a few other watches, including the Oris Big Crown Pointer Date in bronze. I’m sort of neutral on Oris. It makes excellent watches, generally speaking, but its new pieces don’t grab me all that often. This bronze edition of the Big Crown Pointer Date, however, is a winner. There’s a lot of on-trend stuff going on, the most obvious being the bronze case, which gives the watch a retro look that will become even more distinguished with time. Green dials are, like Hansel, so hot right now and this is a wonderful juxtaposition to the bronze of the case and brown of the leather. It is simply a beautifully rendered watch that builds on classic watchmaking and adds modern trends. The case is 40mm and inside is a perfectly fine Sellita SW 200-1 automatic movement. The other features reflect the name, including the big crown (which isn’t that big by modern standards) and the fourth hand on the dial that points to the date, which is marked with an outer ring. Available on Mr Porter, the Big Crown Pointer Date in bronze is priced at HK$12,079. Finally, we have a piece from a brand that I have criminally overlooked, the Autobahn Neomatik Datum from Nomos Glashütte. Long a favourite with those working in the creative industries, Nomos rather unfairly gets categorised as a design watch, but just because the average Nomos owner wears black turtlenecks and is fond of scarves in the summer that doesn’t mean they can’t be enjoyed by the wider community. Design is the brand’s strength and so it is with the Autobahn Neomatik Datum, which is inspired by Germany’s automotive heritage. Despite the splash of colour and speedometer look the dial is clean and modern, and I’m a big fan of the unorthodox placement of the date window, under the small seconds. Nomos wins extra points for its excellent movements, which are made in-house in Germany. Inside this piece is the DUW 6101 automatic with 42 hours of power reserve. The 41mm steel case comes with a nylon strap. Also available from Mr Porter, the Autobahn Neomatik Datum is priced at HK$43,138.