The history of Hublot dates back to 1980 but in lots of ways, the story didn't really begin until 2005, when the brand unveiled the game-changing Big Bang. The Big Bang is the heart and soul of Hublot, and its bold looks, large size and radical fusion of unconventional materials defined a new generation of masculine timepieces. Discover more about the bold watches of Hublot at Time+Tide.

LIST: Ultimate transparency — Hublot’s sapphire evolution, in 14 watches

First things first, what is sapphire crystal? Essentially, it’s the same stuff used to make a watch ‘glass’ and display casebacks, formed by crystallising aluminium oxide at very high temperatures to create an extremely hard material. Roughly speaking, it mimics what Earth has taken 400 million or so years to do, to form natural sapphire gemstones. For sapphire-cased watches, the middle, bezel and back are milled from solid blocks of the material. Because it’s almost as hard and scratch-resistant as diamond (9 on the Mohs scale, as opposed to 10 for diamond), the task of milling it into the complex shapes required is much more easily said than done. Indeed, sapphire crystal can be cut only by diamond. Harnessing the knowledge it gained from developing a milling technique for Magic Gold (another hugely challenging material), Hublot works with a Swiss specialist as part of an exclusive partnership to develop the sapphire material. Speaking at Baselworld 2016, Ricardo Guadalupe, Hublot’s CEO, said that the rationale for using the material was to show off its in-house calibres – and that would also determine the choice of models that would be given sapphire cases. 1. 2016 MP-05 LaFerrari After 18 months of development… Read More

Read More No Comments

HANDS-ON: Blue Monday – the Hublot Big Bang Unico Blue Sapphire 

Hublot’s sapphire journey began with their ultra high-end MP-05 LaFerrari, a horological engine in the truest sense of the word, with 50 days of power reserve thanks to 11 coupled barrels. It made perfect sense for Hublot to show this beast of a movement off to its fullest capacity with a full sapphire case. But it seems LaFerrari only whet Hublot’s appetite for transparency, making a splash last year with the Big Bang Unico Sapphire, a limited edition of 500 pieces that eclipsed any previous sapphire production runs. It’s easy to see why Hublot is drawn to sapphire as a case material. Aside from the fact that its extreme hardness means it’s virtually scratch-proof, the glossy, transparent material is a perfect fit for Hublot’s art of fusion design approach – the see-through case turns expectations of what goes where on a watch on its head. Inside is outside, fragile is strong. Very Hublot. And from that initial sapphire Big Bang, we’ve seen the collection expand rapidly, with all black versions, stone set models (a particular favourite), a sapphire Spirit of Big Bang and this, the Big Bang Unico Blue Sapphire. This watch marks the first time blue synthetic sapphire has been… Read More

Read More No Comments

INTRODUCING: The Hublot Big Bang Unico GMT

The angry man of jazz, Charles Mingus, famously said, “Making the simple complicated is commonplace; making the complicated simple, awesomely simple, that’s creativity.” A saying which, I think, is rather befitting to watches with a GMT or dual time zone complication. Because, let’s face it, having to calculate the time in another time zone can be a complex task, especially as you stumble through an airport in a jetlag-induced haze. With Hublot’s latest Big Bang, the Unico GMT, what was already a simple solution to a complex problem has been made veritable child’s play with the push of a button. The added simplicity is thanks to the integrated proprietary module within the three-day Hublot Unico Cal. HUB1251 movement, which enables a second time zone – tracked by the conventional hour hand – to be instantly and independently adjusted in one-hour increments. This is done by operating the pushers at two and four o’clock, which adjust the hand forward or backward respectively. These push-buttons are also fitted with a safety mechanism to prevent simultaneous operation, and their rectangular shape – reminiscent to that of the early Big Bang models – help distinguish the Unico GMT from the chronographs. Of course, being… Read More

Read More No Comments

LIST: Ultimate transparency — Hublot’s sapphire evolution, in 14 watches

First things first, what is sapphire crystal? Essentially, it’s the same stuff used to make a watch ‘glass’ and display casebacks, formed by crystallising aluminium oxide at very high temperatures to create an extremely hard material. Roughly speaking, it mimics what Earth has taken 400 million or so years to do, to form natural sapphire gemstones. For sapphire-cased watches, the middle, bezel and back are milled from solid blocks of the material. Because it’s almost as hard and scratch-resistant as diamond (9 on the Mohs scale, as opposed to 10 for diamond), the task of milling it into the complex shapes required is much more easily said than done. Indeed, sapphire crystal can be cut only by diamond. Harnessing the knowledge it gained from developing a milling technique for Magic Gold (another hugely challenging material), Hublot works with a Swiss specialist as part of an exclusive partnership to develop the sapphire material. Speaking at Baselworld 2016, Ricardo Guadalupe, Hublot’s CEO, said that the rationale for using the material was to show off its in-house calibres – and that would also determine the choice of models that would be given sapphire cases. 1. 2016 MP-05 LaFerrari After 18 months of development… Read More

Read More No Comments

INSIGHT: Why the Hublot Haters have it wrong

So, in some parts of the watchosphere, it’s fashionable to be a Hublot Hater. While I’m not a HH (professional detachment, there are other, better uses for my energy), I will admit to being in the “not loving it” camp for quite some time. It was the bigness, the brashness, the it-watchness of it all. Given the choice, I’ll take off-trend. It was the flashy image – the rappers, footballers and boxers. Which is ironic, really, since Hublot began with Carlo Crocco as the anti-bling of the 1980s. At the time, the watch world was elbow-deep in gold, with wall-to-wall Cartier and Rolex. And then Hublot arrived: a matt black rubber strap on the gold. The brand was as polarising then as it is today, but in a different way. There were still the questions you can find all over the internet: the price-to-value relationship? Originator of materials or an opportunist? Creator or copyist? …Hublot began as the anti-bling of the 1980s. At the time, the watch world was elbow-deep in yellow gold, with wall-to-wall Cartier and Rolex. And then Hublot arrived: a matt black rubber strap on the gold. Especially, it was the loudness. Jean-Claude Biver’s Hublot has been PR-noise turned up… Read More

Read More No Comments

LIST: Got the car? Get the watch – 3 Hublots for 3 Ferraris

In our experience, if you’re into intricately constructed, high-performance machines, it doesn’t really matter if they’re intended for the road or your wrist. But, as our favourite young Old El Paso advocate asks, “Why don’t we have both?” So with that in mind, we’ve found three Hublots that are the perfect pairing for three of Ferrari’s finest. The LaFerrari Aperta At the very top of Maranello’s pecking order is the mighty LaFerrari, limited to 150 pieces. It’s as much a work of art as it is an engineering marvel, so it’s only fitting to pair it with the equally hardcore and equally limited MP-05 LaFerrari, with a movement inspired by the eponymous car’s V12 engine. A movement that, by the way, packs a whopping 50 days of power reserve. The 488 Spider The 488 Spider is the latest chapter in the brand’s long history of open-topped V8s, drawing from the legacy of their aggressive ‘80s Targa masterpieces while still being entirely contemporary, thanks in no small part to Flavio Manzoni’s aerodynamic design. To honour this fusion of past and future we opted for one of the most exciting Big Bangs of recent years: the Meca-10, with its powerful (and beautiful)… Read More

Read More No Comments

IN-DEPTH: Ostentatiously stealthy – the Hublot Big Bang Ferrari Unico in carbon

The story in a second Got a blacked-out 488 rolling in and looking for the perfect watch to match? Read on. Hublot are masters of both the high-level partnership and the limited edition. Both of these traits are very much to the fore in their freshest round of Ferrari-themed Big Bangs. I recently had the pleasure of spending some time with this not at all under-the-radar carbon version. The case When the Big Bang was first introduced way back in 2005, it was simultaneously outré and appealing. These days the large and (dare we say) iconic modern sports watch is very much an accepted part of the landscape. But familiarity hasn’t lessened the potency of the Big Bang as, like many great designs, it’s a surprisingly malleable canvas, where almost every single element can be changed, while still managing to be clearly recognisable from 10 paces. These days the large and (dare we say) iconic modern sports watch is very much an accepted part of the landscape. But familiarity hasn’t lessened the potency of the Big Bang. Key to this versatility is the case. The modular construction and Hublot’s own dedication to their Art of Fusion design approach means that the… Read More

Read More No Comments