The Noramis Collection by Union Glashütte

Written by Debbie. Posted in News

Union Glashütte is a German luxury watch brand that is very German, so to speak. Although part of the internationally acclaimed Swatch Group, the Union Glashütte website is only in German, so makes it hard to read about their watches.

Find out about their Noramis collection, the first one that includes both men’s and women’s watches. They are simple designs that focus on what watches should do: tell time.union-glashutte-noramis

The dial is simply structured and the numbers are easy to read. The curve of the dial gives the watch some depth and highlights the slight shimmer of the sunburst finish. The tapered indices and pointed hour and minute hands give the watch a classy, understated look. Different versions of the watch with the collection offer contrasting colors like silver against black and rose gold accents against a silver background.  The bezel is simple and non-distracting, while the lugs are rounded and made from stainless steel. Straps are either brown or black leather with crocodile grain or stainless steel. The men’s version of the Noramis watch comes in a 40mm case and the women’s in a 34mm. On the women’s version, the black dial is decorated with ten diamonds.

The Noramis watches have power reserves of 42 hours and a screwed-on sapphire crystal back allows the wearer to view the automatic movement. The rotor bears the “skeletonized” brand lettering and is decorated with the Glashütte stripe finish. All watches are water-resistant to 100 meters.

Known as the “poor man’s L.U.C. Chopard Slim” the Noramis looks and acts like a Chopard but at a fraction of the price, making it a good buy. They are similar in looks but not in price. While the Chopard L.U.C. Slim sells for about $20,000 the Noramis goes for about $1,500.

The Noramis collection or any other watch by Union Glashütte is not that easy to find in the U.S. but online everything is possible.

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Baume & Mercier Releases New Classima Executive Watches

Written by Debbie. Posted in Baume Mercier

Baume & Mercier is a unique watch brand for many reasons, one being that they produce great looking watches that are well made but don’t cost a fortune.Baume Mercier Classima Executive

As with all luxury watch brands, B&M has suffered lower sales as well as a recent change in top-level management, but they continue on and with this perseverance come four new Classima Executive collection watches. Around since 1830, and with their mantra being: “Accept only perfection, only manufacture watches of the highest quality”, Baume Mercier watches remain some of the best ones out there today.

These four new pieces are additions to the Classima Executive collection, whose claim to fame has always been that it flawlessly combines sophistication with classic touches, as seen in the details of each watch.

Each of these new additions measures between 39 and 42 mm in diameter and all the cases are made from steel. The matching bracelets come with both brushed and polished steel to create a super smooth appearance. The silver colored dials are easy to read and with the steel case and bracelet offer an all-around very elegant look. The blue hands are done in blued steel and make for a cool contrast to the rest of the watch. Most versions come with some type of guilloche engraving decoration on the dial.

Priced between what is likely to be around $1,000 – $3,000, Baume & Mercier gives you much more in a watch than most other brands do. With their high quality finishings, sapphire crystals and dressy, elegant look, these new Classima Executive watches are worth taking a serious look at.

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Audemars Piguet Creates Pride of Mexico Watch

Written by Debbie. Posted in LifeStyle Watches

Well, it certainly seems as though the luxury Swiss watch brand Audemars Piguet is making efforts to spread its name and products all around the world. Just recently, the brand announced its sponsorship of the Russian ballet as well as signing the ballet’s principal dancer as a new brand ambassador; perhaps the first time ever a watch brand has done such a thing.APpride-of-mexico watch

And now, AP (as Audemars Piguet in known in the industry) is making a special “Pride of Mexico” watch to celebrate Mexico’s 200 years of Independence from Spain.

Using the infamously popular Royal Oak Offshore style, AP will come out with this limited edition watch, obviously geared toward the wealthy Mexican market.

APpride-of-mexico-watchtitaniumAvailable in just 300 pieces, this watch is created from 19K rose gold or titanium and comes in a 42mm size. The rose gold series will offer 100 pieces and the titanium series will have 200.

The standard Royal Oak features remain; meaning the octagonal shape, steel edges, and use of hexagonal screws. What will make this watch unique are the color of the hour hands (green) and the red chronograph seconds hand, set against a white dial finished in “Mega Tappiserie” as these are the colors of the Mexican flag. Engraved on the case back is the Angel of Independence that commemorates the 200 years.

The watch runs on the Audemars Piguet Calibre 2326/2804 automatic chronograph movement and comes with a black crocodile strap with green stitching and either a gold or steel buckle. The watch is water resistant to 100 meters and has 38 hours of power reserve.APpride-of-mexicoback

With only 300 of these special “Pride of Mexico” watches being made, they are sure to go for more than other watches from the Royal Oak Offshore collection, but with that many, if not more millionaires in Mexico, sales should not be a problem.

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Romain Jerome Delivers a Watch Made with Moon Dust

Written by Debbie. Posted in Fashion Watches

They look like something found in sunken ship, inside the treasure box. Like something that pirates wore. They are watches made by the boutique French brand called Romain Jerome. Jerome achieved fame in the watch world when he launched his Titanic DNA collection, a series of watches that are partly made from stabilized rusted steel sourced from the infamous Titanic.Romain Jerome Moon watch

The creativity and horological know-how behind these watches is incredible. Romain takes materials like rust and coal and now moon dust and coats the bezels and dials of his watches with them.

The collection is called Moon Dust – DNA and there are four models: the Gold Mood, Steel Mood, Black Mood and Steel with gem-set diamonds. Each model is produced in a limited series of 1,969 pieces.

The Steel Mood (as pictured here) has a case crafted from finely polished stainless steel and a bezel made from tiny fragments of carbon fiber found on the Apollo XI spacecraft. The strap is partially composed of materials gathered from an ISS spacesuit and is connected to the case with signature Romain Jerome lugs – lugs that are capped with star screws. It’s the dial that’s especially impressive and magical. Made from a mineral composite, including real fragments of material found on the moon, it genuinely looks like the moon’s landscape and gives a three dimensional sense of craters. The RJ logo is found at the 12 o’clock position and small seconds are indicated at the 9 o’clock position by a metal structure. The hour and minute hands are made to look like sun sensors found on space crafts that are sent to the moon.

This watch runs on a caliber from the specialty firm Concepto and has a power reserve of 42 hours. This watch, as with the others in the Moon Dust – DNA collection is water resistant to 50 meters.

In addition to using actual moon dust in his watches, Romain Jerome also employs rust and graphite (the chemical name for coal). These materials and application techniques are a first in watch-making and are used to give the watches a dark, magical look that makes it look as though it really did come from a sunken treasure.

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Swatch Group Will Invest $100 Million in Brazil

Written by Debbie. Posted in News

The Swatch Group is the world’s largest manufacturer of watches. Under the group’s umbrella are 19 watch companies, including Tissot, Omega, Swatch, Breguet and others. Swatch used to operate a Tissot factory in Manaus, a free trade zone in the capital of the state of Amazonas in Brazil, but was forced to shut down because bribes were being demanded. However, now Swatch plans to re-enter Brazil and will be bringing $100 million dollars worth of investment.swatch-logo

The timing of this decision could not better as Brazil was just awarded the honor to host the 2016 Summer Olympics. Nicolas Hayek, the man behind Swatch is scheduled to meet with Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva to discuss Swatch’s investment plans.

Housing one of the largest populations in the world and by far in Latin America, Brazil is a great market with lots of buying power, especially for mid priced watches such as those by Swatch. It is also fair to say that Brazilians will be drawn to the fun, bright colors found in Swatch watches. Other watches sold by brands owned by the Swatch Group, such as Omega and Tissot watches, will also do well in Brazil.

The Swatch Group has a great reputation as a company to work for. In a survey conducted in Switzerland, 3,400 were asked about the image, profile, quality, innovation and emotional components of 112 different Swiss companies. Swatch Group came in at the top.

Its sales also go to show that they are doing well. Despite increases in the cost of materials and production, the Swatch Group continues to expand, open new facilities, and push forward into new markets, such as Brazil. Hayek has stated that “Brazil is the company’s No. 3 market for investment, trailing only Switzerland and Asia.”

It was just announced that the 2016 Olympics Games will be hosted in Rio. Omega Watches, part of the Swatch Group, also recently announced that it will continue to be the official timekeeper of the Olympic Games. Omega has pledged to invest more than $1 billion dollars into sports timekeeping over the next ten years.

The $100 million promised by Swatch Group and the $1 billion promised by Omega is a lot of money, but surely this type of money is worth the advertising that Omega and therefore Swatch will receive in Brazil surrounding the Olympics, making it a win-win for all those involved.

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Audemars Piguet’s New Brand Ambassador

Written by Debbie. Posted in News

It is common practice for luxury watch brands to “hire” celebrities as their brand spokespeople. When a celebrity is seen wearing a certain watch, people are more apt to buy it. Omega has many celebrity ambassadors, such as Cindy Crawford, George Clooney, Nicole Kidman, Michael Phelps and others. TAG Heuer does also, including athletes Tiger Woods and Maria Sharapova. Tissot has female race car driver Danica Patrick and so on. Ok, you get the picture. So, it’s no surprise that Audemars Piguet, one of the top notch luxury watch manufacturers also wants a famous face to sport their goods, but their recent choice is a bit surprising.AP new ambassador

Audemars recently confirmed that it signed a three year deal for sponsorship of the Russian prima ballerina Svetlana Zakharoba and the place where she dances; the Russian Bolshoi Ballerina Theater. It’s probably safe to say that this is the first time a watch brand has brought on a ballerina as well as a theater. Although the figures themselves may be an experimental move, the country in which they reside is not. Russia represents a vast market for luxury goods, watches included. AP is figuring that those who are part of Russia’s elite and go to the ballet, are the same ones that can afford and want to buy high end watches.

It is assumed that advertisements for Audemars Piguet watches will be in the programs handed out and perhaps also in the theater itself.

Speaking of the Russian elite, Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin has quite the collection of luxury watches and although he has recently given a few away, he surely has enough money to re-stock. During a press conference a few weeks ago, a factory worker asked Putin for something to remember him by… his watch. Rather than look bad, Putin took it off and handed over a Blancpain watch worth about $8,000 dollars.

The most expensive luxury watch that Putin has been spotted wearing is a Patek Philippe Perpetual Calendar valued at about $51,500 dollars.

The new Audemars Piguet Ambassador Svetlana Zakharova was born in the Ukrainian city of Lutsk and has been dancing since the age of 10.

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Luxury Watches Raising Money for Charities

Written by Debbie. Posted in News

Both Audemars Piguet and IWC have recently donated special watches to raise money for charities.

The Royal Oak Abruzzo Tourbillon Chronograph Watch by AP was auctioned off to support the Abruzzo nel Cuore’ foundation.  Audemars Piguet created this one a kind watch specifically for the event and since it has “Royal Oak” in the name, you can be sure that it retains certain features from this famous collection, such as the hour markers and hands, as well as the “mega tapestry” pattern on the dial. This modern looking watch also brings new elements not often found in the Royal Oak line, into play, such as a 30 minute chronograpgh and a tourbillon complication. The case is made from titanium and comes with a matching folding buckle. This watch, along with other memorabilia, brought in over $200,000 for the charity.AP Abruzzo Tourbillon Chronograph

Luxury watch maker, IWC (International Watch Company), for the fourth year creates a special edition watch called the “IWC-Laureus Sport for Good Foundation” series. IWC and the Laureus Foundatin first joined hands in 2006 and every year thereafter have worked together to offer kids around the world other alternatives to violence, drug abuse, disease and poverty. This is grand undertaking which is why IWC makes a limited series of 1,000 watches to raise funds for the foundation. As a model for this special series, IWC uses their Portuguese Automatic watch and this year adds a blue dial and blue alligator leather strap. Each watch has a specially engraved caseback that shows the number within the series and a “team spirit” medallion that shows kids with their arms interlinked. This image was done by a 12 year old boy from Sri-Lanka, one of the children that IWC and the Laureus Foundation seeks to help.IWCPortAutoSportsGood

The case of this “IWC-Laureus Sport for Good Foundation” watch measures 42.3 mm and is made from stainless steel. To contrast the blue dial are two silver subdials with blue hands; the subdial on the left indicates small seconds, while the one at the right shows the status of the 7-day power reserve. There is a small date window located at the 6 o’clock position and an IWC-signed folding clasp in stainless steel.

It’s nice to see companies like Audemars Piguet and IWC, who have made millions by selling luxury watches over the years, donate their time, name and products to charities.

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Piaget Polo 45 Chronograph Gets Paraded Around Town

Written by Debbie. Posted in Men's Watches

The Polo FortyFive Chronograph by Piaget is a luxury sports watch, which is not the type that most people associate the Piaget brand with. Piaget is most known for producing high-end men’s and women’s watches and jewelry. Founded in 1874 by a man whose last name was lent to the brand.Piaget Polo 45

So, now Piaget is spreading the word that it too deserves to be known as a producer of luxury sports watches and is doing so by getting high profile athletes to simply wear the watch and be seen. Not a bad deal for anyone involved.

Piaget recently gave one of their Polo 45 Chronographs to Fernando Torres, the well known Spanish soccer player who plays for both the Liverpool and Spanish national teams. Torres, a handsome guy will wear the watch when out in public and Piaget is hoping that people will notice, want one and then buy one. Whether Torres is being paid is unknown but since each of these sporty luxury watches sells for $17,900 we can assume that he’s happy just to get a free one.

The Polo FortyFive is named after the 45 minutes that a polo match lasts and showcases what is a “first” for Piaget – combining titanium, injected rubber and steel. The design has been purposely revamped from the other watches in this collection: new design, new curves, gadrooned screw-lock crown, rubber capped push pieces and crown, black PVD treated oscillating weight, triple folding clasp with safety mechanisms and summer / winter positions. The grade 5 titanium that was selected for the case is the only type that can be polished.

The Piaget Polo 45 Chronograph is handsome and stylish. The 45mm sized case is made out of titanium and has a sporty silver dial, index markers, and a rubber strap with steel hinges. The automatic movement is manufactured in-house with a flyback chronograph and second time zone GMT function, sweep seconds, and big date complication. The bracelet is crafted from stainless steel, titanium and rubber. The Piaget Polo FortyFive Chronograph watch is water resistant to 100 meters.

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Roger Dubuis Unveils the Excalibur Double Tourbillon Skeleton through a New Partnership

Written by Debbie. Posted in News

Roger Dubuis, a Swiss watch manufacturer of some of the most luxurious watches ever, has announced a new and exclusive partnership with Damas. Established in 1995, Damas operates stores across Qatar, Bahrain, Oman, Jordan, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Libya, Sudan, Italy and India. Roger Dubuis will be sold exclusively at Damas locations across the Middle East and India. Damas is United Arab Emirates-based company.Roger Dubuis Excalibur Double Tourbillon Skeleton

This is a great move for Dubuis as the United Arab Emirates is home to Dubai, the city which has become an extraordinary playground for the rich and famous, achieving levels that even Las Vegas cannot compete with. Those that live in and visit Dubai and the Middle East have a large appetite for luxury goods such as watches and jewelry, and the pockets to satisfy it. Damas will be the only store to carry Roger Dubuis watches and jewelry, including watches from their popular Kingsquare, Excalibur and Easydiver collections.

Matthias Schuler, CEO of Manufacture for Roger Dubuis, made the following statement in respect to this new partnership: “Damas is a pioneer of the luxury industry in the Middle East and Roger Dubuis is synonymous with high quality and luxury. We are confident that this partnership will help us to achieve further growth within the Middle East market and we look forward to the year ahead.”

The Excalibur Double Tourbillon Skeleton by Roger Dubuis was unveiled for the first time in the Middle East today, October 1, 2009. Home to the Excalibur family, the Double Tourbillon Skeleton uses the skeletonised version of Roger Dubuis’ Emblematic double flying tourbillon movement, with differential, tourbillon cages visible between 4 and 5 o’clock and 7 and 8 o’clock positions.

The round case is made from white gold and measures 45mm in diameter and 7.67mm in thickness. 28 rubies are found on the watch. There are 292 components and the watch has a power reserve of 48 hours. A hand-sewn black crocodile strap with white gold folding clasp top it off.

The Excalibur Double Tourbillon Skeleton is one of the most complicated luxury watches on the market today.

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A. Lange & Sohne’s $1.75 Million Diamond Watch

Written by Debbie. Posted in LifeStyle Watches

A. Lange & Sohne is a German luxury watch maker and is well known for producing super high-end timepieces, on the same scale as Audemars Piguet, Patek Philippe and Vacheron Constantin. For example, all Lange cases are made from precious metals (gold or platinum) rather than stainless steel, a metal that is widely used in luxury watches. Another unique aspect of A. Lange & Sohne is that all their movements are developed, made, and assembled in-house; something which very few watchmakers do anymore.ALange & Sohne Tourbograph

In addition to the above, Lange became a pioneer in watchmaking technology when it developed a rare “double split chronograph” that enables the wearer to time two events for up to 30 minutes each.

A recent joint venture between A. Lange & Sohne and the Paris-based jewelery store Dubail has resulted in the $1.75 Million Diamond Tourbograph Pour le Merite Watch, which is an enhancement of the limited edition “Pour le Merite” series.  The obvious difference? The diamonds. These days, few may be able to appreciate such a statement of excess and luxury in watch, while others may be able to appreciate it for what it says about watchmaking. The $1.75 Million Diamond Tourbograph Pour le Merite Watch is hand-made and highly complex. It comes in an all white gold case and bracelet and features over 40 carats worth of sparking, clear white diamonds.

The watch runs on a hand-assembled Caliber L903.0 movement that is manually wound, with tourbillon, split-seconds chronograph, and a power reserve indicator. There are 600 pieces in the movement.

One may ask, with almost two million dollars worth of diamonds, whoever could afford such a watch? Being that the watch was commissioned by and will be sold at Dubail, perhaps there is already a buyer.

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