The watch market is structured by price segment. Above the CHF 2,000 threshold you start to see the appearance of watches in exclusive categories and from prestigious brands. Climbing further up towards the CHF 5,000 mark, you are in the biggest, most diverse and most hotly contested price segment of all. Almost all the big names in watchmaking are here, with the exception of the purely high-mech brands.
The choice is accordingly vast, in both men’s and women’s models, and there is a plethora of tempting offers. One of the most interesting options for women is the Classic 28 mm by Chopard. This diminutive quartz watch, with a gold case (including the caseback) and a classically elegant dial (as its name would suggest), is one of the best-value gold watches available, and it doesn’t skimp on the precious metal. Another possibility is the Bulgari Lucea 28 mm, whose steel bracelet is the result of an unprecedented amount of work. Its polished, curved links arranged like overlapping scales, as well as its sunburst dial, make this watch stand out from the crowd.
The sportier Admiral’s Cup Legend by Corum also exists in a 32 mm diameter for women. Its mother-of-pearl dial features the twelve pennants that are a signature of the Admiral’s Cup line, in an upmarket “sport chic” version with rose gold bezel. Staying with the sporty chic aesthetic, Louis Vuitton’s new Fifty Five in a 36 mm version is an excellent choice. The silver monochrome elegance of this all-steel watch is accentuated by the green touches on its cutout hands. The watch is meticulously executed with numerous refined details, and the added advantage of an automatic movement.
Where men’s watches are concerned, automatic is definitely the way to go. At this price point, it’s even possible to get hold of a complication or two, or a manufacture movement, as is the case with Frédérique Constant. The Geneva watchmaker has always endeavoured to provide its in-house calibres at an accessible price. The Classic Manufacture has a refined aesthetic with delicate Roman numerals and a deep black dial. The Ronde Croisière by Cartier also comes with the in-house automatic 1847MC calibre. It represents a significant gesture from the luxury jeweller, particularly in its steel version, which combines a black dial with gold accents. This sporty and affordable watch benefits from all the attention to detail that has helped to cement Cartier’s watchmaking reputation over recent years.
Looking at complications, Montblanc brings its aggressive pricing to the Heritage Chronométrie Dual Time, with two time zones and date and an impeccably understated dial. But at CHF 5,000 and even less, there are already quite a few chronographs to be found. This is the core domain of companies such as Bell & Ross, whose BR126 Aéronavale ticks all the boxes: automatic chronograph, royal blue sunburst dial, universal diameter, meticulous finishing, cool name. IWC has just redefined its pricing targets, and the new Pilot’s Watch Automatic 36 is its best-value proposition. Functional to the point of being utilitarian, readable, even spartan, this small-diameter pilot’s watch is designed to fit small wrists, but wears equally well on a larger frame.
Corum is a Swiss luxury watch brand and was set up in 1955. The most popular watch show is that the Admiral’s Cup but Corum has also had success with the coin watch for example. This timepiece was introduced in the 1960s and was famous because of its guide wind or quartz movement within a $20 or a $10 coin. Corum is also respected for planet premiers where each year limited editions are sold out shortly after they are on the industry. Severin Wunderman obtained Corum in 2000. Since the brand 2013 belongs to the China Haidian Group (who also controls the Eterna watch manufacturer).Corum’s iconic Golden Bridge debuted in 1980 in its original barrel-shaped case. This past year, the Swiss brand introduced a redesigned variant in a more traditional round case. At this year’s Baselworld watch honest, Corum introduced yet another variant of the Golden Bridge, in a brand new, Art Deco-influenced square case. Following is a look.The Corum Golden Bridge Rectangle, such as its round-cased predecessor, is the brainchild of famous designer Dino Modolo. The baguette-shaped, linear-oriented, manual-winding movement, Caliber CO113, is observable in the middle of this open air and boasts a high level of engraving and finishes on its 18k gold bridges and plate. It’s surrounded on either side by 18k gold constructions representing six Roman numerals whose curved shapes and rivets call into mind the structure of a bridge. The movement’s timekeeping functions are on full screen, together with the spring barrel at 6 o’clock feeding energy to the escapement in 12 o’clock. Caliber CO113 includes a frequency of 28,800 vph (4 Hz) and a power reserve of 40 hours.
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