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Friday, July 12, 2024

Watches and Wonders 2024: The Best New Releases


It’s the most prestigious event in a horologist’s calendar –  and for an industry that revolves around timekeeping, you certainly wouldn’t want to miss Watches and Wonders 2024.

Despite only opening in Geneva to industry professionals, journalists and VIPs this morning, Watches and Wonders 2024 is already proving to be an exciting event. With 54 of some of the biggest names in the industry presenting and eight more heading to the Swiss capital for the first time, Watches and Wonders is set to be the biggest yet. 

Running until April 13 for professionals, and an additional three days until April 15 for public viewings, each brand is set to showcase their spectacular watches expected to release within the next year. 

We will keep this page updated throughout this week, updating with the latest and most exciting announcements as we hear them from Geneva. 

Rolex

Rolex Perpetual
Perpetual 1908 / ©Rolex/Ulysse Frechelin

There is a reason why Rolex remains the biggest attraction at Watches and Wonders year after year, and the legendary watchmaker proved just why at this year’s presentation. Among its lineup of novelties, the Maison announced six new timepieces, including a more casual GMT-Master II, dressed-up Daytonas and an all-gold Deepsea. 

Picking just one to feature should be difficult: that is until we spotted the Perpetual 1908. A new addition to the family that was launched only last year, the Perpetual 1908 is decked in 950 platinum and graced with a striking ice blue dial featuring a guilloche rice-grain motif. 

Hermès

Cut / ©Hermes

When Hermès launched its H08 watch in 2021, although it looked the part, the brand was aloof to describe it as a sports watch. That’s not the case at Watches and Wonders 2024. Instead, the brand will introduce a new line of sports watches powered by mechanical movements and aimed at women. 

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With the name ‘Cut’ taken from the polished slices taken from the flanks of its case, the 36-mm model embodies the house’s passion for simplicity and strong design. 

The Hermès Cut is available in pure steel or an elegant two-tone mix of steel and rose gold, as well as an option with 56 bezel-set diamonds for added luxury.

Reflecting the versatility that Hermès is known for, owners can personalize their timepieces daily if desired from the choice of the metal bracelet and an alternative rubber option, available in eight Hermès signature colors. 

Zenith

Defy Skyline Chronograph / ©Zenith

To long-awaited fanfare, Zenith has announced the latest iteration in its Defy Skyline collection, which was introduced back in 2021, unveiling the Defy Skyline Chronograph. The new model brings an edgier and more contemporary aesthetic to the original case design, featuring a 41mm stainless steel case in the signature octagonal shape with a multi-sided bezel. 

While there is a choice of metallic black, blue or silver color for the dial, of course, the collection’s signature starry sky-patterned dial with a four-pointed star engraving remains. As does the traditional El Primero dial configuration, which sees three oversized and overlapping counters positioned at 9 o’clock, 3 o’clock and 6 o’clock. 

The watch is driven by the El Primero caliber 3600 1/10th of a second chronograph movement with a silicon escape wheel and a 60-hour power reserve.

Vacheron Constantin

Vacheron Constantin pocket watch
Berkley Grand Complication / ©Vacheron Constantin

Vacheron Constantin presents the world’s most complicated watch – a record previously set by the Maison itself. Comprising 63 horological complications and 2,877 components, the Berkley Grand Complication is a pocket watch that – among its other records – includes the world’s first Chinese perpetual calendar.

Because of the complexities of the Chinese perpetual calendar – where both the length of a month and a year varies – the watch took 11 years to develop, including a year to assemble a total of 2,877 hand-finished and hand-assembled parts. Crafted in 18-karat white gold, the finished timepiece has a dial on either side of the case and weighs just over two pounds (0.96 kg).

Van Cleef & Arpels

Van Cleef watch
Lady Arpels Brise d’Été / ©Van Cleef & Arpels

Always one to put on a show, Van Cleef & Arpels presents the latest new creations in its Poetic Complications collection. Celebrating the freshness of a summer morning, the Lady Arpels Brise d’Été watch at first seems like a charming scene of summer flowers and fluttering butterflies, housed in its 38mm diameter case  Where the grandeur lies is in its storytelling. 

The on-demand automatic winding movements also allow you to animate the dial, and with the simple touch of a button, two plique-à-jour enamel butterflies flit around the dial to indicate the time, while background flowers in bluish vallonné enamel sway as if caught in the wind. The use of diamonds, tsavorite garnets, spessartite garnets and white mother-of-pearl, all set in 18-karat white gold, only adds to the show. 

Tag Heuer Monaco

Monaco Split second Tag Heuer
Tag Heuer Monaco Split-Seconds Chronograph / ©Tag Heauer

Marking the 55th anniversary of the Monaco timepiece, Tag Heuer has released the Tag Heuer Monaco Split-Seconds Chronograph. The new watch’s signature function is its rattrapante, or split-seconds chronograph, which can time two events that start simultaneously but finish independently – useful, for example, during a car race. 

The split-second hand and titanium dial arches pay a vibrant homage to the original 1969 model, meanwhile, the two colors on offer, a sporty red and a classic blue, are inspired by the original colors of the Monaco chronograph. 

Parmigiani Fleurier

Parmigiani Fleurier Toric
Toric / ©Parmigiani Fleurier

When announcing the return of the Toric collection, Parmigiani Fleurier’s CEO Guido Terreni said that the collection is not a rebellion but a gentle revolution: “To break free from traditional constraints, creating a watch that embodies a nuanced, serene, and versatile elegance.”

While there are two models in the revived collection, it is the Toric Chronographe Rattrapante 42mm that will be hailed as a true celebration of the brand’s classic. To honor its profound horological heritage, only the finest materials have been used, with the manual winding movements, dials, indexes, and markers all crafted in gold – making it the only high-frequency integrated rattrapante chronograph crafted in 18-carat rose gold. 

The one that caught our eye, the Toric Chronograph Rattrapante Rose Gold, is priced at $145,200 and limited to only 30 pieces. 

Ulysse Nardin

Ulysse Nardin Freak S Nomad
Freak S Nomad / ©Ulysse Nardin

Unconventional yet traditional in many ways, the Freak S Nomad, the latest from Ulysse Nardin, is somewhat of a contradiction. The new 99-piece limited edition watch is defined by its unique movement, which at first glance carries echoes of a fantastical spaceship – yet a quick glance at its technicalities will prove this is a testament to haute horlogerie. 

Much like much of the previous Freaks, the S Nomad still has no dial, hands or crown, instead the calibre UN-251 manufacture is exposed in all its three-dimensional glory under a sapphire crystal. The result is a whirlwind marriage of 18th and 21st-century watchmaking, brought together in one freakish machine.

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