Thursday, November 27, 2008

Movado Ambassador Tom Brady and Ebel's Gisele Bundchen serve up Thanksgiving good cheer.

Celebrity couple Tom Brady, Movado Ambassador and Patriots quarterback, and Gisele Bundchen, Ebel Ambassador and Brazilian model, surprised Goodwill's headquarter in Roxbury MA on Wednesday to serve up some Thanksgiving dinner. 400 participants at Goodwill's job training and career services were treated to tender turkey graciously served by Giselle and Tom. Tom Brady recovering from a season-ending knee injury ,which required surgery, was briskly put on pumpkin pie duty. Tom Brady seem to be walking easily and without a limp while making his way through the crowd. He was in good spirits. In regard to his recover, Tom Brady said "I am doing well,"

Brady had torn the anterior cruciate ligament and medial collateral ligament in his knee on Sept. 7 in the team’s opening game against the Kansas City Chiefs. The injury occurred when he was hit by Kansas City safety Bernard Pollard.

Last month, Brady suffered a post-operative staph infection after surgery in California after a patella tendon graft was inserted to replace his torn ACL during a surgery performed by Dr. Neal ElAttrache on Oct. 6. A number of surgical procedures were required to clean out the wound.
Earlier this month, Tom Brady began rehabilitation at the Patriots training facility at Gillette Stadium.

The NFL has become synonymous with Thanksgiving since the Akron Pros defeated the Canton Bulldogs 7-0 in 1920. The Lions have played every year on Thanksgiving since 1945, and were joined by the Dallas Cowboys, who began playing on Thanksgiving in 1966. This year the New Engand Patriots will host the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday November 30th, 2008 at Gillette Stadium.

Although Tom Brady is not able to partake in the NFL Thanksgiving tradition, he has spread good will by serving pumpkin pie.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

In the mood for something completely different? Bvlgari Ipno

At first glance the actual function of this streamlined wristwatch may slip you by: An ipod or a time capsule; a futuristic pod of some kind or a James Bond gadget that emits high frequency glass shattering sound waves.

The Bvlgari Ipno is a watch - a cutting edge digital watch that combines old world craftsmanship and new world materials and technology. This watch is definitely a luxury watch that embraces technology rather than shuns it.

This luxury Bvlgari Ipno is crafted from high-tech ceramic (black portion) and stainless steel making this watch extremely durable. The black strap is a sensual satin which takes to the wrist like cream.

Hours, minutes and seconds are indicated digitally giving class to a familiar comfortable time display. The Bvlgari Ipno is also available with diamonds.

If I had a crystal ball I could foresee this very watch being the epitome of our technological era , embracing technology while steeped in the tradition of watch making.

This watch looks great with winter wear, it will give you, the wearer a bold stylish look.

Bvlgari is emblazoned clearly above and below the time display , and everyone knows the name Bvlgari. If you would like to learn more about the incredible history of Bvlgari click here.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

The Zenith Defy Xtreme Luxury Sport Watches.

The Zenith Defy Xtreme is a Sporty Watch to the extreme. Zenith cuts no corners in giving you the power on your wrist. This Watch resembles the ultimate in extreme sports. Wear a watch like the Zenith Defy Xtreme and your daring hot image will be complete. Even in a business suit, this watch will portray the real you, your inner core and your choice of activities on the weekend. Don't be surprised if your associate , late Friday, looks at your watch and says,

"See you on Monday ... and be careful."

There will be a hint of jealousy in his voice. Oh Yes! Because with your Zenith Defy Xtreme you have some real cool plans for the weekend.

Let us examine this adrenaline guzzling, heart stopping, jaw breaking time piece and then ... you will decide if you can handle a Zenith Defy Xtreme.

Diameter: An impressive 46.55 mm for the El Primero Chronograph or 43 mm for the Elite Series.

The Zenith Defy Xtreme is not the watch that shyly peeks out from under a gold cuff link - the Defy Xtreme is meant to get noticed and get noticed it will with its decorative screw heads in the rotating bezel to its innovative and technologically advanced materials. These materials have been used both in the movement and the case body. Materials developed to withstand tough conditions like high temperatures and pressure. Three years of intense research and development formulated this specialized material. The research and development on the physical and chemical properties of the material was done exclusively by Zenith and the result - Zenithium. An ultraviolet, ultra resistant alloy from which bridges of the movement is made.

The Zenith Defy Xtreme cannot be seen; it must be felt on the wrist, breaking the sound barrier, riding the waves and roaring down straight desert highways. The Zenith Defy Xtreme is water resistant up to 1000 m, the case is entirely black titanium with a satin finished bezel and case band with polished screw heads. The Zenith Defy Xtreme does not stop there, it is equipped with a slightly raised helium escape valve located on the edge of the case at the 10 o'clock position which allows for decompression under extreme conditions. Zenith does not leave anything to chance, Zenith strives for uniqueness in every way possible - the push-buttons have carbon fibre inserts, multi layered dials combining honeycomb aluminium, shock resistant Hesalite and carbon fibre. The bracelet is a blend of brushed stainless steel and composite materials reinforced by Kevlar.
The Defy Xtreme is available with a Tourbillon, Defy Xtreme Open, Defy Xtreme Chronograph and the Defy Xtreme Power Reserve.
Got your weekend planned yet? Let your Zenith Defy Xtreme plan it for you.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Ballon Bleu De Cartier Flying Tourbillon

There are Luxury Watches and there are Luxury Watches ... and there are Luxury Watches bearing the Geneva Seal Hallmark.
Cartier has created its first Luxury Watch which met the criteria of excellence required to receive the Geneva Seal. Cartier has entered another distinct realm of watchmaking where the excellence is impeccable.
Click here to learn more the Geneva Seal .

The Ballon Bleu Flying Tourbillon is exquisitely crafted - a new creation that embodies the spirit of centuries of watchmaking. The 18 carat pink gold bezel frames the slate-coloured guilloche dial. The case back is transparent with sapphire crystal displaying the perfect mechanisms of the watch.
Cartier signature sapphire cabochon crystal is set in a fluted crown.

One of the most rewarding features of this Luxury Timepiece is the Flying Tourbillon. A Tourbillon is a watchmaking wonder invented in 1795 by French watchmaker Abraham-Louis Breguet. It is postulated that a tourbillon counters the effects of gravity by placing the escapement and balance wheel in a rotating cage, supposedly in order to negate the effect of gravity. This watch houses a Flying Tourbillon ,a variation of the original tourbillon, created by Alfred Helwig, an instructor at the German School of Watchmaking. The Flying Tourbillon is neither supported by a bridge or cock, at both the top and bottom, rather it is cantilevered, being only supported by one side.

The placement of the Cartier's Flying Tourbillon is designed to display the aesthetic appeal of this luxurious timepiece. The flying tourbillon with its C-shaped cage indicates the seconds.

Mechanical Movement with manual winding, 9452 MC calibre, with the Geneva Seal. The Ballon Bleu De Cartier Flying Tourbillon beats at a rate of 21,600 vibrations per hour and has a power reserve of 50 hours.

I could not imagine a more perfect watch. It has class, distinction, aesthetic appeal and pulsating wonder. Carter knows its watches.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Romain Jerome's new luxury watches. See what they are made of this time!

With what material is Romian Jerome's new luxury watches crafted.

Is it...

a) Fragments of the Apollo XI spacecraft
b) Fragments of the Soyuz spacecraft
c) Dials with mineral structure containing Moon dust
d) Fibers from the International Space Station Space Suit
e) All of the above.

You are quite correct if you guessed (e) all of the above, because last night Romaine Jerome in Geneva, Switzerland launched the next in its "DNA of famous legends." series.

You must remember the huge publicity Romaine Jerome received for its first Legend watches crafted from steel and coal dust from the sunken Ocean Liner R.M.S. Titanic.

CEO Yvan Harpa announced the next in the Legend Series during a press conference and gala evening at the Kempinski Hotel. The series is called Moon Dust -DNA. The series will be in Limited Editions of 1969. To commemerate the year man first landed on the moon - 1969.

I have no doubt this series will produce as much publicity as the first, but then again Romain Jerome loves the spotlight.

The Five Watches in the Moon Dust Series are:

1) Moon Rider
2) Gold Mood
3) Dark Side of the Moon
4) Steel Mood
5) Dark side of the Moon Tourbillon

The names of the watches sound more like Sci Fi movies or books and add a sense mystery to the timepiece.

Romain Jerome guarantees that the origin of each and every unique material used in crafting the watches is cerified by a legal document authenticated in Switzerland. In addition, every remarkable Moon Dust timepiece will be accompanied by a certificate from the Association of Space Explorers.

The Moon Dust Series is a giant leap in watch making.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

The Sophisticated Luxury Watch. The Breitling for Bentley Flying B.

Breitling for Bentley symbolizes a union striving for absolute perfection while embracing the infinity of time.

As I look outside at the parking lot, a row of cars stand shimmering on the asphalt, 3rd from the left, between a Mercedes and a Range Rover, is a Bentley. I catch my breath, I have a weakness for beautiful things. I walk towards it as if drawn by some unknown pull. The Bentley is all there commanding its space. I run my hands along its sleek body, gently feeling the exquisite craftsmanship that created such a masterpiece. Oh! The elegance, the sophistication and the undulating beauty from its warm coffee interior to its elegantly molded grill. As I stand transfixed by the Bentley, I realize I get the same wonder of craftsmanship and precision when looking at a Luxury Watch. In this day and age when computerized machines spit out the most cost effective borderline products - it is thrilling to see a masterpiece that has been given infinite attention and care to detail like the Bentley the Breitling.

Breitling and Bentley share the same endeavor for the utmost perfection, the same high standards for reliability and precision, class and performance. Both Breitling and Bentley use cutting edge technologies to enhance the tradition. The Breitling for Bentley Collection derives from a intense passion for fine mechanisms and aesthetic representation.

Breitling has had a long stead relationship with aeronautics, commercial aviation, and military air travel; however. with this new partnership,which begun five years ago, Breitling gets a feel for the road. In addition to Breitling's Bentley round watches featuring chronographs and characteristics taken from high end luxury automobiles such as the color palette and wood, Breitling has dedicated a Breitling for Bentley with the "winged B". The "winged B" is has served the most sophisticated and prestigious British automobile, the Bentley, for many years Bentley. The Collection is quite aptly named the Flying B.

The Flying B Collection is unique and luxurious for many reasons -

a) This is the first time Breitling has presented a watch that is not round.
b) The Watch case is rectangular and exquisitely cambered to mirror the streamlined shape of a convertible resulting in a sophisticated and elegant design.
c)The display mode of the Breitling Bentley Flying B captured my attention instantaneously out of a huge selection of watches as it has such a unique display mode. The jumping hours at the 12 'o'clock position, a feature I adore on any watches, minutes displayed around the dial, and a deliciously off centered sub dial underneath the 6 'o clock position displays the seconds. Pure brilliance in design.
d) Incredible attention to detail -
  • Knurled motif inspired by Bentley instrumentation
  • Hour markers sculptured from mother-of-pearl.
  • Many variations of color combinations in dial, sub dials, band and molding.
  • The delicately cambered dial profile required remarkable skill and ingenuity.
  • The curving shape of the beveled sapphire crystal is scratch resistant and has been glare proofed on both sides to provide the wearer with utmost performance satisfaction.
e) COSC Chronometer-certified, the movement of the Flying B - Breitling Calibre 28B has undergone rigorous testing. The Flying B is Mechanical self-winding.
The Flying B is available in steel, in a warm red gold version, and in a Series of white gold exuding the image of refined. Engraved on the caseback is the legendary Bentley “Flying B”.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Audemar Piguet Royal Oak and Royal Oak Offshore

Audemars Piguet's three main virtues that fuel the company forward, "tradition, daring and excellence" and a whole lot of creativity. Instead of baffling the watch enthusiasts with a zillion different collections, Audemars Piguet sticks to the ones that work such as the Royal Oak and Royal Oak Offshore. Audemars reinvents the hugely successful Royal Oak collection and Royal Oak Offshore time after time and often times produces watches with names of celebrities and sport heroes or sporting events. Audemars Piguet watches exude a sense of careful abandonment where the watch is pulling at the far reaches of design while still deeply embedded in tradition, and unlike most watch manufacturers today that have been overpowered by large watch groups, Audemars Piguet still stands alone as a Watch Manufacturer. Audemars Piguet is still, after 130 years, in the capable and innovative hands of the founding family. Audemars Piguet embraces the passage of time and marks time's relentless running with its Luxury Watches.

The Royal Oak was unveiled at Basel World 1972 as a high-end steel sports watch with the Octagon shape and became an immediate success. Designed by Gerald Genta, the flexibility of this case design is endless whether in movements (either quartz or mechanical), complications, colors or materials. Riding high on the success of the Royal Oak, Audemars Piguet released an extreme sports version, in 1992, called the Royal Oak offshore. Audemars Piguet has experimented with cutting edge materials such as applying forging technology to machining carbon which resulted in forged carbon.
One watch to use the high tech forged carbon technology is the Royal Oak Offshore Singapore Grand Prix Chronograph. commemorating Formula One's first night race, the timepiece commissioned by Singapore Grand Prix. Self-winding, forged carbon with steel bezel, case back engraved with the inscription Royal Oak offshore Limited edition- Singapore GP 2008. Water resistant to 100 m. This pretty in pink watch may give the impression of cotton candy but this Ladycat self-winding chronograph watch commorates one of the meanest extreme sports out there: Yacht racing. A sport that requires stamina, agility, precision and coordination — all qualities brilliantly demonstrated by women. Audemars Piguet is partnering with first-class yachtswoman Dona Bertarelli SpÄth, the person who put together the all-women Ladycat crew. To commemorate this partnership Audemars Piguet released the Royal Oak Offshore Ladycat, a limited series of 150 watches, combining diamonds and rubber. The Ladycat comes in a 37mm stainless steel case, black dial with pink applied hour markers, a fuchsia rubber strap, and the back is engraved with the inscription ‘Royal Oak Offshore Ladycat’. This watch also sends the message about the cardiovascular disease in woman which has highly prevalence in women with little public awareness.

Of course there is the Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Concept Tourbillon

The Royal Oak and Royal Oak offshore has a 8 distinctive edges which emits power and a sense of energetic passion that spurs life on. To own this watch is to own a spark of energy that is Audemars Piguet. Every timepiece is crafted with attention to detail and quality. 

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

This blog is a Luxury Watch Treasure Trove.

In case you were confused by the word "Luxury" this watch will re clarify the concept. Chopard (Founded in 1860) sells a Super Ice Cube Luxury Watch. Retail $1,130,620. Take your Tourbillons - give me diamonds - lots and lots. 66.16 carats of diamonds including 1,897 brilliants, 288 trapeze-cuts, and a center case glimmering with 16 squares. The watch is subtly pretentious and overtly glamorous. Chopard offers over fifty variations on the "Ice Cube" from black diamonds to pastel sapphires to rubies. Chopard is renowned for its incredible "gem sense" in that every hand picked gem is placed on the watch in perfect harmony and balance.
This next watch is a Blancpain 1735 - Blancpain was founded in 1735 and this watch was named for the year. At first glance this Luxury Watch worth about One Million Dollars seems quite humble; however this watch has 6 individual complications. Two more than necessary to qualify as a "Grand Complication". The 6 Complications are compacted in an ultra slim 42 mm case which in itself can almost be deemed a complication. The Blancpain 1735 is equipped with:
a) A Perpetual Calander making allowances for different lengths of month as well as leap years till the year 2100.
b) Split-second chronograph or "rattrapante" which has two second hands, one of which can be blocked with a special dial train lever to indicate an intermediate time while the other continues to run. When released, the split-seconds hand jumps ahead to the position of the other second hand.
c)Minute repeater which has a striking mechanism with hammers and gongs for sounding the hours or quarter hours at the will of the wearer. The wearer pushes a slide which winds the spring. Most Repeaters use two different gongs to signal hours (low tone), quarters hours (high and low tones in succession), and minutes (high tone).
d) Tourbillon - said to compensate for the interference of gravity on the watch thus improving the watches accuracy, From the French word "whirlwind", in the Tourbillon the entire escapement escapement is mounted on a epicyclic train in a cage and rotated completely on its axis over a regular period of time, usually once a minute. A tourbillon is valued more for its superb horological craftsmanship than its actual functional abilities.
e) Moon-phase minder which displays the phases of the moon.

The streamlined case encapsulates 740 components that takes eight to ten months to build. This timepiece collection is limited to 30 watches. Crocodile Strap and 80 hour power reserve, what more could you ask for.
Hublot does everything big. The materials under the diamonds are invisible giving a perfect shimmer to the watch. The "Big Bang Chronograph" with a heart throbbing tourbillon is worth One Million Dollars.

The following three watches have yet to be priced, but my guess is it is going to be quite high and they add quite nicely to my treasure trove of watches blog.

This sleek bracelet is more bracelet than watch but since it is a Jaeger-LeCoultre creation the tiny watch nestled between the gleaming squares is a mechanical masterpiece of fine watch craftmanship. No price quoted as of yet for this Joaillerie 101 Manchette stunning timepiece.
This watch is the Tag Heuer Fantasy where for the first time the diamonds tell the time. There is no one other than Tag Heuer themselves to explain how this marvelous space age watch operates:

This luxury watch set with 879 Top Wesselton (5.8 carats) VS/SI (1.1 mm), full-cut, diamonds hides a surprising innovation: the digital display through the diamonds. 54 of the 879 diamonds have been cut in a revolutionary way to provide a very high-definition concentration of the light emitted by 54 LEDs (light emitting diodes) that display the time in glowing red. The red is echoed in the satin strap that gives a warm and silky look contrasting with the brilliance of the multiple diamonds.

There you have it and the price is inestimable as only three of these watches have been crafted. Quite mind-boggling that a creation like this has been limited to but three.
Diamond Rotolog Watch. Crafted by Watch Manufacturer Nixon. Interesting no doubt. I kind of cannot wrap my mind around it. This watch is studded with 1,851 diamonds - 764 full cut white diamonds while the remaining ones are full cut black diamonds, bringing the total number of carats to 9.25 carats.By this time I expect you to be salivating at the sight of all these luxurious items. I was going to sign off but Corum's Classical Billionaire Tourbillon kept on surfacing above my subconscious. Retailing at around a Million Dollars - Okay $998,000. A spectacular time-piece with a white gold case set with baguette diamond bezel, transparent dial and a stunningly blue alligator strap. The watch is a manual winding tourbillon with sapphire bridges. A 90 day power reserve with a 2007 limited production of 10 pieces.

A watch like this comes up for sale only once in a lifetime like a fleeting comet. The Girard-Perregaux Opera One. This luxury timepiece has no dial hiding the craftsmanship. The watch has three bridges, a tourbillon and a minute repeater sounding a Westminster Chime.

Imagine wearing one of these beauties on your wrist.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Cartier Roadster - The watch that makes the man.

I know three people who wear a Cartier Roadster:

A successful Real Estate Developer, in his 50's, a self made man, who never settles for anything less than the best. His desk and office furniture is custom made and he always has the Bloomberg Channel on. The streamlined picture- thin T.V screen hangs from a gold knob, perfectly matching the elegant cream, gold and cherry wood decor of his office. He wears a solid gold Roadster Chronograph with a date calender magnified at the 3 'o clock position, and this timepiece fits his image to perfection. Another watch on his hand would just look out of place.

The other guy I know wears a Stainless Steel Chronograph Roadster. He is 22, and the son of a wealthy diamond dealer. Sleek black hair, impeccable clothing and a relaxed friendly demeanor. He is slowly coming into his father's business. Very slowly. He does like fast sporty cars though. Last time I checked it was a black Mercedes AMG. His Stainless Steel Chronograph Roadster glints in the sun as he turns the wheel, shrieking around tree lined streets. His watch is him. I cannot picture him without his watch.

The last gentleman is the Manager of the Business Banking Section of our Bank in his mid thirties. He wears dark blue tailored suits with heavy white pin stripes and pointed shoes. He just had his first child and thus gave up his Porsche. He likes rock concerts and Season tickets and he likes the fact that his Roadster has three interchangeable straps. I noticed when he shakes hands, he extends his arm so that his Cartier Roadster is visible. His Roadster completes his image.

Cartier introduced Roadsters in 2001 for its 150th anniversary, and since then this particular watch collection has had astounding success. Cartier has even released a Roadster fragrance. The first men's fragrance release by Cartier in 8 years. The Roadster Timepiece is a sign of a successful confident man. The Roadster works for the wearer and all the elements of the timepiece are so finely integrated, these elements of the watch work for the Roadster.

Cartier's inspiration for the Roadster came from the world of luxury automobiles.
The Roadster is mechanical movement automatic winding Cartier Calibre 8510.
The hands of the Roadster are luminescent sword shaped black oxidized steel and the timepiece is water resistance to 100 meters. The crystal is scratch resistant sapphire.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Which watch will Obama wear to the White House? Tag Heuer?

Now that Obama has been elected the 44th President of the United States, people want to know what is it that made Obama succeed in his victory. Is it his magnetic charisma or his ability to convey his policies in an articulate manner? Is it his policies of change that won over the younger generation or is it his image?

Obama's clean-cut polished image definitely made an impression and a definite part of his image was his watch.
After much early speculation it was later confirmed what watch Obama wore on the campaign trail. The watch in question was most definitely a Tag Heuer Series 1500 Two-Tone Diver. Here Obama is in the photo above campaigning in New Hampshire with his Tag Heuer Divers Watch.

I found the same watch for sale on Ebay except with a two tone bracelet. Obama's Watch has a brown leather band. Obama seemed to have gotten the watch sometime in 1991 or 1992 and wore it for the next 15 years. A long time to wear a single watch which says something about Obama and about a Tag Heuer Watch. His Tag Heuer Watch accompanied him on the most incredible journey to the most coveted position in the entire United States, and being that Obama is but 47 years old and will be when he begins his presidency, the passage of time that was displayed on his watch, was used by Obama wisely. Very wisely.

Info about the Tag Heuer Series 1500 Divers Watch:
In 1991, Tag Heuer introduced the Series 1500 as "professional sports watches" and "first and foremost functional pieces of diving equipment"
  1. The Watch was available in three sizes.
  2. The Series was discontinued in 1998. (Maybe with all this hype - Tag Heuer should rethink the series)
  3. In 1991 Obama's watch would have cost $575.00
  4. Distinguishing features are the raised triangles on the bezel with a triangle displaying a single dot above the 12 'o'clock position.

Okay! Now I know what you thinking. You thinking that I have gotten this post all wrong. All the latest pictures have Obama wearing a large faced dark watch with white hour markers and black leather strap. For Obama's 46th birthday, on August 4, 2007, he received a gift from the Secret Service Agents who were protecting him on his Presidential Campaign - a large, black-dialed chronograph bearing the shield of the Secret Service. This watch is only available for Secret Service employees at their Secret Service Store located at their Headquarters in DC. Manufactured by Jorg Gray, the Chronograph sports a tri-compax design (24 hour indicator at the 3 'o'clock position, seconds at the 6 'o'clock position and chronograph minutes at the 9 'o'clock position) A quick set date is located at the 4:30 position. Markers and hands are luminous.

So as Barack Obama heads to the White House on the first day of his presidency, what watch will he wear? Will it be his trusty Tag Heuer who has kept time for him year in and year out? Or will it be his birthday present from the Secret Service? Or will it be a new ultra expensive watch given to him by some head of state? I have a hunch it will be the Tag Heuer. Just a hunch.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

The Genius of Gerald Genta: The man and the Company.

Gerald Genta -the man- founded Gerald Genta-the company- in the the late 1980's however, his profound influence on the World of Horology was felt long before that time. Known as one of the most creative watch designers of our time, Gerald Genta is responsible for the exceptional timeless creation of the extremely sought after Audemars Piguet Royal Oak, The Nautillus for Patek Phillip, the IWC Ingenieur, the Omega Constellation & Seamaster and Bulgari Bulgari. Gerald Genta played a major role in the late 1980's by reintroducing the watch world to the magnificence of Mechanical Luxury Watches.

The Luxury Watch magazines of today are thick with glossy watches and hundred of different designs, but when Gerald Genta was working on his visionary Mechanical Watches in the late 1980's the Swiss Watch Companies had just bounced back from what seemed like an inevitable free fall into oblivion. Swiss Watchmakers can still recall the dark days of 1982 when Swiss banks lent more than $400 million to keep the industry afloat. Swiss Watchmakers needed to reclaim their industry from Japan in order to continue their watchmaking legacy. If you remember Japan had flooded the market with their cheap yet accurate quartz watches. Fast Forward to those whimsical colorful plastic Swatch Watches manufactured by SMH Ltd, the worlds largest watchmaker. I had one. It was a notebook watch. We all had one ... and the Swatch Watch got Switzerland factories back on their feet and producing again.

The focus was now back to watchmaking in Switzerland and Swiss Watch Makers were breathing a sigh of relief. They had survived. They had suffered a hard knock. In 1970 there were 1,620 Swiss Watch companies employing 89,000 people; in 1985, the number was down to 600 employing only 32,500. But the little Quartz miracles had lost the novelty and people were looking for a something different, something luxurious, mechanical and with complications.

In 1990 Gerald Genta handcrafted a Timepiece with a perpetual calender, push-button minute repeater and a skeleton tourbillon that sold for $250,000. Gerald Genta help shape the Luxury Mechanical Watch Industry with staggering complications and awe-inspiring creations.

Today Gerald Genta is owned by Bulgari Group. Its creations are galactic and so utterly different. A spectacular and slightly outrageous collection is the deliciously dizzying Octo Jewellery Collection. Entirely hand painted, jumping hours and retrograde minutes; glittering with 177 diamonds or the Gerald Genta Gefica displayed above, hand decorated as well as two rows of titanium beads along the caseband giving the watch a dangerous studded "rough around the edges look" .
Gerald Genta does not mail order bits and pieces for its complications, Gerald Genta is one of the rare watch manufactorers capable of designing and crafting complications like its pulsating Tourbillons, Minute Repeaters and the all alusive yet alluring Grande Sonneries within the confines of its workshop.
The Company ,Gerald Genta, has incorporated the energy and creativity of Gerald Genta -the

By: R Van Halem

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

The Self-Winding Luxury Wristwatch.

Or more commonly referred to as the Automatic Watch. Most Mechanical Watches nowadays are equipped with a self-winding mechanism. In other words the mainspring is wound automatically by the natural swinging motion of the wearer's arm.

You might be wearing one at the very moment... so how does it work?

The watch contains a semi-circular rotor - depicted in the image of the Perrelet Watch. This rotor is an eccentric weight that turns on a pivot within the watch case. Natural movement of the wearer's arm causes the rotor to swing to and fro on its staff. The staff is attached to a ratcheted winding mechanism. The motion of the wearer's arm is transformed into a circular motion of the rotor that by a series of reverser and reducing gears winds the mainspring. Most modern automatic luxury watches have two ratchets and thus wind the mainspring during clockwise and counterclockwise rotor motion.
Once the mainspring is fully wound, a regular watch can store enough power reserve for two days. Most automatic watches can be wound manually if the watch is not worn sufficiently to keep the mainspring wound. Another alternative to keep automatic watches running is the use of a watch winders.

Abraham-Louis Perrelet invented the self-winding mechanism ,in 1770 ,for pocket watches. The watch wound as the wearer walked. An oscillating weight inside the hefty pocket watch moved up and down. Perrelet invention was quite the rage in 1776. The Geneva Society of Arts reported that only a 15 minute walk was enough to wind the watch sufficiently for eight days. In 1777 the automatic pocket watches were selling quite nicely.

Breguet improved on Perrelet mechanism calling his automatic pocket watches "perpetuelles"

Although the first wrist watch was introduced by Patek Philippe in 1868, the automatic rotor for wrist watches was not invented until 1923 by a watch repairer from the Isle of Man named John Harwood. This self-winding mechanism was an improvement as the wearer only had to move his arm not take a walk. Harwood's system utilized a a pivoting weight which swung as the wearer moved, winding the mainspring. The ratchet mechanism only swung in one direction and were stopped at 180 degrees by spring bumpers to encourage the back and forth motion. This early type of automatic watch is now known as a "bumper". Fully wound the bumper would run for 12 hours. The "bumper" did not have a stem winder and so the hands were moved manually by rotating a bezel around the face of the watch. The Harwood Self-Winding Watch went on sale in 1928 and 30,000 were produced until the company collapsed in the Great Depression.

Rolex improved Harwood's design in 1930 and used it for the basis of the Rolex Oyster Perpetual which had a mounted semi-circular weight which could rotate a full 360 degrees. Rolex Oyster Perpetual had 35 hours of stored energy.

Omega is the only Automatic watch that utilizes a Co-Axial movement which is a double Axial escape wheel, a lever with three pallet stones and impulse stone on the balance roller, together with a free sprung balance. This system reduces sliding friction compared with the lever escapement inorder to promote greater accuracy over the course of time.

Watch Companies like Concord still create manually wound watches and can be produced
with exceptionally thin watch cases like the slender Concord Delirium pictured above which has a Watch Case of just 6mm. This type of thickness cannot be achieved by an automatic watch as the rotor occupies space within the watch case. However with the knowledge that ones watch is being wound as you wear it does afford a certain peace of mind.

By: R Van Halem

Monday, November 3, 2008

A big win for Tag Heuer Ambassador, Lewis Hamilton.

Tag Heuers's twenty three year old amassador ,Lewis Hamilton, made history on Sunday by becoming Formula One's youngest Champion. It was a tough challenge but Briton's Lewis Hamilton gained enough points, by finishing fifth, at the Brazilian Grand Prix on Sunday to win the title by one point over Felipe Massa. Vodafone Mcfaren Mercedes F1 driver Lewis Hamilton came into the season-ending race with a stong seven point lead, which was enough to beat Brazilian Felipe Massa, who one the final race. The race was hard from the initial driving rain, to the wet road surface to the tough competition, but Hamilton pulled through when he overtook Toyota's Timo Glock on the last lap, and that is what he needed to win the championship with 98 points.

Last year Tag Heuer's Ambassador Kimi Raikkonen narrowly beat Hamilton , but this year the spotlight is on Hamilton.

Tag Heuer is on a role. For two years in a row its Ambassodors have one the highest honor in motor sport.
"Once again, Lewis Hamilton has shown the world what he is made of" said Tag Heuer president and CEO Jean-Christophe Babin. "He is a true champion, one of those rare individuals whose human endeavor makes us marvel, who rise to every occasion and performs at the peak of his potential - even under extreme pressure."

...A fellow guy in Peterborough, England (he has kept his name from the media as he has come into a sudden fortune), forced a major bookmaker to fork over the largest single payout in motor sport betting - 125,000 Pounds. Ten years ago he spotted a 13 year old kid racing against his own son on the go-cart track. Hamilton handled the go-cart with so much talent that this guy went to Ladbrokes, on May 13th, 1998, and placed a 100 pound bet that this kid, Hamilton, would win the F1 championship before his 25th birthday and 50 pounds odds of 1,500-1 for the double. Last year he pocketed 40,000 pounds collecting on a 200 pound wager that Hamilton will win his first Formula One race before he turns 23. With his winnings, this fellow plans to go on vacation to Cuba and buy a Tag Heuer luxury watch engraved with Hamilton's signature on the back.

This guy is lucky and he is buying a Tag Heuer watch. I want a Tag Heuer watch too, and I think I will go for a Formula One. This whole race has gotton me in the mood for motor sports and what better way to be in the mood for motor sports than with a Tag Heuer Formula One Chronograph on my wrist.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Tag Heuer joins the most exclusive Swiss Watchmaking Club.

Tag Heuer, a popular luxury watch company, joined "The Fondation de la Haute Horlogerie" or the "FHH" on October 1st, 2008. The FHH was established in 2005 in Geneva because of the rapid increase in watch making brands as well as the products that are created. Countless brands are releasing fine watch creations. FHH has taken on the role of providing information and guidance from the watch making specialists to the press as there has been an increasing interest from the media and the public.
The FHH is a modern Foundation which for the most part utilizes the Internet for the release of information.
In addition the FHH recognizes Luxury Watches have evolved from a "social aspiration" into a "cultural aspiration"
The FHH focuses its primary attention on information and training in Horology.

Tag Heuer in its absolute commitment to unwavering precision and its unrelenting strive for innovation become a member of FHH.

As part of the association, Tag Heuer is currently displaying the Grand Carrera Calibre 8 RS Grande Data GMT at the Munich Time (a Watch Fair) which started on October 31st and ended yesterday. Tag Heuer will showcase the Grand Carrera Calibre 8 RS Grande GMT a second time at Salon Belles Montres in Paris which runs from November 28-30. This precision timepiece is part of the Grand Carrera series of 2007, an unequivocal
testament to Tag Heuer's craftsmanship and expertize.