The watch-making industry, fuelled by falling demand and increased competition, are about to enter their most creative and innovative period in history. Advanced design and manufacturing technology has changed the ways and pace of new product development, spawning complex new components that are precise and yet easier to use. Computer-aided design means that parts can virtually be grown, a vast leap forward from the limitations of conventional machining.
This has seen a virtual tumble of new watches onto the market, each with original features that would previously have taken years to achieve, now being produced in a matter of months. In the wake of this change comes an inevitable increase in the number of collectors and buyers who are more informed and discerning, all looking for the perfect, unique piece.
Jaeger-LeCoultre – Master Compressor Extreme Lab2
From arguably the most innovative watch brand comes the sports watch to die for, the Master Compressor. To test how the Master Compressor Extreme Lab2 would perform in the most challenging conditions, Jaeger-LeCoultre collaborated with renowned Swiss climber Stéphane Schaffter, who wore the prototype during an expedition in the Himalayas. It was there that he conquered a new mountain, naming it “Antoine LeCoultre’s Peak” with the Extreme Lab 2 on his wrist. The anti-magnetic mechanical chronograph has a patented jumping digital minutes counter, a function selector regulated through the crown and a semicircular radical power reserve indication, not forgetting the requisite ruggedness that would befit a world explorer.
Piaget – Altiplano
First created in 1960, the legendary Calibre 12P was then the thinnest self-winding movement. In honour of that momentous achievement, the Manufacture de Haute Horlogerie Piaget have issued the beautiful Calibre 1200P – still the thinnest in the market, under the name Altiplano. At a record breaking 2.35mm its functionality is perfect and necessary, displaying only hours and minutes – and a small seconds display in two references – but is elegantly worn in either 18-carat white or pink gold, available in a limited number of 235 each. The Altiplano is the culmination of half a century of creativity and invention, and is the basis for several variations, all with the incredible finish and workings of a classic Piaget.
Panerai Tourbillon GMT: Radiomir 1950
Technically the most sophisticated in Panerai’s collection, the hand-wound, three spring barreled watch has enough power to keep it running for more than six days. With first-in-the-world features making it more accurate and precise, it is also uniquely styled and brought to life by a tiny ‘beating heart’ representing the highest expression of Officine Panerai manufacturing skill.
Panerai, the revered Italian watch brand who have an emphatic presence in the Middle East have built their experience and knowledge over 150 years in the industry and are focused on technological innovation. Their CEO, Angelo Bonati recognizes the need to create a vast variety of products that suit every nuance in the market, offering targeted and exclusive watches to customers here in the Middle East.
Audemars Piguet – Royal Oak Offshore Grand Prix
The synergy between watchmaking and auto engineering is perfectly represented in this visionary timepiece. At Audemars Piguet, they continually strive for new ideas, exploring cutting edge technologies to create the most original watches on the market while staying true to their core values of tradition, excellence and audacity. "People who truly love Audemars Piguet watches share the same vision as our company, they appreciate tradition,” says their CEO David von Gunten. “At the same time they are always looking for products with exceptional quality, and of course, dare to accept revolutionary ideas." The Royal Oak Offshore Grand Prix collection embodies all these things, sophisticated shapes, high tech materials and all the daring of a Formula 1 racing driver.
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