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Beginning Spring 2009 Patek Philippe is defining a new standard of quality for mechanical watches with the launch of the brand new Patek Philippe Seal. From now on all of the Patek’s mechanical movements will be embossed with the beautiful new Patek Philippe Seal, just another reminder of the quality the brand delivers. While the well known and highly respected Geneva Seal applies to a timepieces movement, the Patek Philippe brand strives to reach a much higher level of excellence. This inspired the development of a seal that applies to not just the movement but a mark of excellence that applies to the entire timepiece. All cases, dials, hands, pushers, spring bars for straps, and functional aspects of a timepiece bearing the Seal must meet the watch industry’s most exclusive and stringent hallmark of quality.

Patek plans to phase out its use of the Geneva Seal which is the hallmark currently used on all the mechanical movements crafted by Patek Philippe, and will be gradually replacing it with its own seal. An interesting difference to the Geneva Seal is the process in which the final rate tests are executed, which are performed with fully assembled watches while conventional tests are preformed on uncased movements. The Patek Philippe Seal guarantees the quality of all materials used in the construction of the watch. As one of the last manufacturers to still keep all manufacturing aspects in house it is one of the rare brands that can oversee and ensure the quality of its product, the Patek Philippe Seal is a great way to remind its customers of this.

Richard Mille has created a new version of its extra-flat RM 016 caliber that has previously been produced in rose gold, white gold and titanium. The RM 016 was the first new case shape for the brand since the Richard Mille Watch line was first introduced.The newest addition to the RM016 is crafted in grade 5 titanium and finished with a Titalyt treatment. The use of this special Titalyt treatment marks the first time it has been used in the creation of a timepiece. The creation of this watch utilizes the process of titanium oxidation which is fulfilled using electro-plasma. This process improves the hardness of the metal as well as its friction, wear and corrosion-resistance. This process also corresponds to AMS 2488D aerospace material norms and the biocompatible treatment is widely applied in the aerospace, medical and automobile industries. The process also results in a uniquely colored case that stands out from other titanium watches. The 49.8 mm x 38 mm case is also shockproof and scratchproof. The RM016 Titalyt® features the automatic winding 005-S caliber skeleton movement with variable rotor geometry. The watch displays hours, minutes, date indicator and variable geometry rotor.

Audemars Piguet has unveiled the next official watch of the 18th edition of the classic Tour Auto car rally, the Royal Oak Offshore Tour Auto 2009 Chronograph marks the fourth time the brand has had the honor of acting as the Official Timekeeper of the Tour Auto. the Tour Auto was first launched in 1992 and is reminiscent of the “Tour de France Automobile”. The tour covers almost 2,000 kilometers and is divided into five stages beginning in Paris. The previous watches Audemars has created for the event are the Jules Audemars Tour Auto for 2006, the Royal Oak Tour Auto for 2007 and the Royal Oak Offshore Tour Auto Chronograph for 2008. This year's Tour Auto 2009 Chronograph will be available in a limited edition of just 100 pieces.

The Royal Oak Offshore Tour Auto 2009 Chronograph has a 42 millimeter titanium case with a rubber bezel. The Screw-lock crown and push pieces are produced in a beauitful red rubber which matches the chronograph sub dials. The case-back is engraved with the Tour Auto logo and bearing the inscription Royal Oak Offshore. The dial features an exclusive “Mega-Tapisserie” decorative motif in black and has the contrasting red chronograph counters with luminescent hour-markers as well as luminescent white gold hour and inute hands. The reference number is 26278IK.GG.D002CA.01 and it has a self-winding movement caliber 2326/2840 with a 38 hour power reserve. The case is placed on a black rubber strap with a AP folding clasp crafted from shot-peened titanium. The Royal Oak Offshore Tour Auto 2009 Chronograph is water resistant to 100 meters.

Corum has chosen a beautiful timepiece to house the unveiling of its second in-house caliber, the CO 007 movement, inspired by their famous Golden Bridge caliber. While the movement may be similar the timepiece itself is truly a unique and stunning contemporary creation. The Ti-Bridge is a limited edition production of only 750 pieces and is an elegant and impressive addition to the brand. The 42.5 x 41.5 mm Tonneau-shaped case is made of titanium with a Polished finish on the top of the case with two sand-blasted grooves and satin-finished case sides. The watch has a fluted titanium crown with satin and polished finishes and is adorned with CORUM key 6-screw satin-finished case-back with engraved CORUM logo. The dial of the Ti-Bridge is non-existent as you can see staraight throught to the movement. The hour and minute hands are baton shaped and have been treated with super luminova for easy readability. The movement is protected by a Sapphire crystal with anti-reflective coating. The case is set on a Genuine hand stitched black crocodile leather strap with a titanium triple folding clasp. The Corum Ti-Bridge has a power reserve of 72 hours and is water resistant to 50 meters.

The New Hublot Gold King Power Watch

in Hublot | Sunday, April 19. 2009

Hublot has unveiled its Gold King Power watch, a watch that is easily recognizable as a Hublot watch with its elegant yet sporty use of rubber and gold. The Gold King Power watch gets its name from the new red gold alloy used in the creation of the watch called King Gold, this new redder and more resilient alloy was developed for especially for Hublot and this is the first time it is being used by the brand. This impressive new limited Edition creation will have a production of only 500 pieces.

The case is 48 millimeters in diameter and is produced in the new King Gold. The bezel is made from King Gold as well with black rubber molding and 6 black PVD-coated titanium raised H-shaped screws. The bezel lugs and lateral inserts are made form a black composite resin and the King Gold crown and push-pieces are finished with black rubber inserts. The dial is protected by a sapphire crystal with interior/exterior anti-reflection treatment. The dial is matt black with gold plated micro blasted counters and flange. The gold plated hands indicate the applique gold plated markers for the chronograph hand and hours and minutes. The case is complimented by an adjustable jointed black rubber strap with a King Gold and steel gold PVD deployant clasp.

The New Hublot Gold King Power Watch features a self-winding mechanical movement with a split-seconds foudroyante chronograph. The Hublot HUB 4144 caliber was developed with La Joux-Perret. The polished bridges have a satin-finish with chamfered edges, while the screws are produced form black PVD. The oscillating weight is Tungsten carbide with dimpled surface coated with black PVD. The bottom plate is sand-blasted and rhodium-plated and the escapement has a Glucydur balance spring. The watch features a 42 hour power reserve and is water resistance to 100 meters.

The New Cartier Baignoire Watch

in Cartier | Saturday, April 18. 2009

Cartier has unveiled the latest ladies Baignoire watch, one of its most well known watch designs for women. The Baignoire watch line was originally launched in the 1920’s is easily recognizable with its interpretation of the classic tonneau case. the Baignoire go its name was inspired after the shape of the watch’s case which is similar to the rim of a bathtub.

This year, Cartier is introducing the Baignoire Grand Modele watch which is a larger version of the original. The watch features a brushed 18 carat gold case and crown set with a sapphire jewel cabochon. The solid silver dial is finished with a sunburst guilloche and blued hands which indicate the Roman numeral hour markers. The watch is available with a beige satin strap with an inner or a gold bracelet with or without diamonds. The strap is completed with an 18 carat gold signed buckle. The watch is powered by an ultra-thin manually wound movement, the Piaget 430C.

The RM 019 Knot Tourbillon Watch

in New Releases | Sunday, April 12. 2009

After finally giving in to the numerous requests to create a tourbillon watch for women, Richard Mille has unveiled the Knot Tourbillon Watch. This stunning timepiece is quickly becoming the envy of the male fans of the Richrd Mille brand, who are now requesting a knot version of their own. The watch gets its name from the striking diamond studded Knot which intwines itself through the various parts of the movement. The baseplate of the RM 019 is produced in Black Onyx which is believed to be able to deflect and channel harmful energy towards the Earth which provides stability. The tourbillon endstone bridge on the onyx baseplate side is also engraved with a Celtic triquetra knot.

The RM 019 movement features a newly developed power reserve indicator with a differential gearing system which is directly connected to the winding barrel. The red line etched on its surface and the direct turning of the power reserve barrel allows the wearer to easily note if the watch needs to be wound. The Knot Tourbillon is available with a tonneau-shaped case produced in 18 carat rose and White gold. Each is finished with a specially sculpted Alcryn collared crown.

President Barack Obama's Watches

in Learn | Sunday, April 12. 2009

Much buzz has been generated from our new Presidents choice of timepiece. Since his entrance into the public eye, Obama has only been spotted wearing two different timepieces. A little digging for pictures taken of Obama throughout the years previous to his campaign reveals that it is indeed only these two watches that he has chosen to wear through the years. The first of which, it is speculated, was acquired around the time of his 1991 graduation from law school is a TAG Heuer Series 1500 watch. The second, a much more elusive watch that sparked months of heated online debates and searches to discover just what brand our new president had placed on his wrist is a little known private label Jorg Gray watch.

The TAg Heuer Series 1500 watch is a two-tone diver watch, produced back when TAG's main focus was to produce professional sports watches. The watch was powered by a quartz movement and was a typical divers watch, featuring a 200 meter water resistance and a unidirectional rotating bezel. The screw-down crown, sapphire glass, and luminous hands and dial markers add to the water resistance and readability. Archived photos show that this watch was the only one Obama wore, at least according to pictures, for more than fifteen years.

It wasn't long before the election that a new watch appeared on Obama's wrist. This new watch was a chronograph, and despite the efforts of many watch enthusiast to identify the watch it remained a mystery. After many in depth investigations it was discovered that this watch had a Secret Service shield on the dial and that he had received this watch as a gift for his 46th birthday. This watch was produced by a company called Jorg Gray who is owned by a company dedicated to custom manufacturing items with third party logos. This particular watch was part of a batch of fifty watches ordered for a secret service employees store. This version of the Series 6500 Chronograph watch has become an instant sensation, and many quickly tried to make a quick buck from the watches instant popularity by selling later series watches. Jorg Gray now produces a commeorative edition version of the watch which features an engraved back celebrating the inauguration of Obama.

Breguet’s La Tradition Fusee Tourbillon Men's Watch is a fantastic edition to the La Tradition collection first launched in 2007. The new model 7047BA/11/9ZU has a 41.00 mm case constructed from 18 carat yellow gold and has a thickness of 15.95 mm. The 18 carat yellow gold fixed fluted bezel compliment the matching gold crown which also is fluted and displays the Breguet logo. The sapphire crystal exhibition caseback provides a window to the superb movement. Though the dial is mostly skeleton the small dial showing hours and minutes is 18 carat silvered gold indicated by blue Breguet hands. A power reserve is also viewable at the 9 o'clock position on the larger dial. The dial is protected by a scratch resistant sapphire crystal. The case is set on a beautiful brown leather strap with a 18 carat yellow gold tang buckle. The watch features a manual wind Breguet Caliber 569 movement which has 16 lignes as well as 43 jewels, the movement includes a tourbillon and fusee-chain transmission. The The Breguet La Tradition Fusee Tourbillon watch is water resistant to 30 meters.

After great lengths of time spent appreciating the 30 new watches Patek Philippe is adding to its collection this year, the two that I kept being drawn back to were the Celestial 5102PR and the Gondolo 5098R. Both timepieces have been previously released in different metals, yet I can't help but admire how these two timepieces are exquisite both technically and visually. Patek has stated that the highlight of the collection is a number of watch models in new rose gold version that "radiate the magical warmth of this precious metal." In the case of the new Gondolo 5098R I say this is an accurate description for this stunning model.

The Mens Gondolo model 5098 was previously released in platinum back in 2007. The tonneau shaped case was inspired by the historic Patek Philippe Chronometer Gondolo dating back to 1925. The new version has a beautiful rose gold case and a hand-guilloche two-tone silver and honey brown dial in gold with both Patek Philippe and Chronometro Gondolo inscriptions. Hours are indicated by Breguet numerals with elegant hour and minute hands. The 5098R-001 features a mechanical manually wound movement, caliber 25-21 REC, which contains a total of 142 parts - 18 jewels and has a power reserve of 44 hours. It has a cambered sapphire-crystal case back and is water resistant to 30 meters.

The 5102 Celestial was initially launched in 2002, this year Patek will be replacing the current yellow gold model with a bi-color rose gold and platinum version. The watch case is made from rose gold while the bezel is produced from platinum. The rare astronomical indication is one of the most impressive Patek creations to date. The watch is powered by a mechanical self-winding movement, caliber 240 LU CL. The dial consists of three metalized sapphire-crystal disc as well as ellipse framing the portion of the sky visible from Geneva. Revealing a complicated sky chart with phases and orbit of the Moon as well as time of meridian passage of Sirius and of the moon. The watch is water resistant to 30 meters.

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