Is the Bovet Dimier Récital 27 a world timer, GMT, or better than both?

Is the Bovet Dimier Récital 27 a world timer, GMT, or better than both?

Buffy Acacia

Usually, a GMT watch can give you three time zones from the main hands, a second GMT hand, and a rotating 24-hour bezel. It requires some mental gymnastics, but you can more or less get a good idea of the time in three places at once. The Bovet Récital 27 from its Dimier collection throws all of that away and embraces an ease that only pure luxury can achieve. There’s no question of efficiency or affordability, so pure excess is harnessed in creating a GMT/world time hybrid that displays three time zones at once, each with its own set of hands. Bovet’s aptitude for user-friendly dials proves that opulence and utility don’t need to be mutually exclusive.

The case

Bovet Dimier Recital 27 Case 1

Just as no expense has been spared, neither have any restrictions been enforced on the size of the watch. 46.3mm may seem like a gigantic diameter by many standards, but the Récital 27 still carries itself with poise. The allowance for a larger dial makes for easier legibility, as does thewriting slope” case profile which helps to angle the dial towards your face. If that happens to make the thickest point of the watch 16.5mm tall, then so be it. If you’re buying a Bovet, there’s no doubt you can afford to have your cuff tailored to accommodate it.

Bovet Dimier Recital 27 Case 2

Many variations of the Bovet Récital 27 have been released, but it’s hard to believe any feel as special as this edition in 18k 5N red gold with purple accents. The term ‘5N’ refers to the specific alloy of the gold, which uses a high percentage of copper for a rosier tint, while the 75% gold content is preserved. The polished concave bezel introduces some wonderful reflections and is a nice point of difference from other traditional bezel shapes, and the straight, thick lugs imply a sense of contemporary stockiness. Balancing out all of the modern touches is a large onion-style crown with a natural blue sapphire cabochon.

The dial

Bovet Dimier Recital 27 Dial 1

It really isn’t easy to lay out so much information in a concise and legible way, but Bovet has done a beautiful job. The blued main hands indicating local time may be the only thing which are a little bit difficult to see above the rest of the dial, but the luminous poire tips help considerably. Then there are the two secondary time zones and their complimentary city wheels, which essentially blend the functionalities of world timers and GMTs into the ultimate form of international time awareness. There’s even day/night indicators built in, so that you won’t make any easy mistakes like calling a client at three in the morning. Balancing out the dial is the luminous moon sculpture at 6 o’clock, which rotates to display both hemispheres of the moon’s phase at once.

Bovet Dimier Recital 27 Dial 2

Ensuring enough contrast, most of the semi-openworked dial has been given a silver sandblasted finish which isn’t as distracting as a fully-decorated movement. All of the heat-blued screws are beautiful counterpoints to the blued hands of the three time zones, and of course blue plays well with the purple hues on the sub-dials, moon phases, and city wheels. Beneath the purple lacquer of the time zones and Bovet logo is a lotus guilloché providing an elegant texture and rewarding close inspection.

The movement

Bovet Dimier Recital 27 Caseback 1

Operating the calibre 13DM04-3FPL definitely requires a flick through the user manual, however it’s pretty easy to understand as soon as you’ve adjusted everything once. First, you can set the local time on the main hands as usual via the crown. Secondly, the alternative time zone at 9 o’clock can be set with the hidden pushers on the left side of the case. The top pusher advances both the city wheel and the hour hand by one hour, and the lower pusher only advances the city wheel so you can compensate for daylight savings time. The time zone at 3 o’clock can be adjusted via the crown, with one hidden pusher on the right side of the case for advancing the city wheel. Finally there is a hidden pusher on the bottom left of the case for adjusting the moonphase, which in theory only needs to be done once every 122 years.

The view of the movement through the sapphire display caseback is quite different to other exhibition casebacks, almost as if it’s intended for display rather than a tucked-away secret. The flanged spacer which supports the architecture of the sloped writing case forms a kind of frame for the calibre 13DM04-3FPL, leading down to the neatly decorated three-quarter plates and horizontally symmetrical array of bridges. There’s also a running seconds display and a power reserve indicator, allowing you to engage more with the movement side of things. It runs at 3Hz with an impressive seven-day power reserve that’s wound manually.

The strap

Bovet Dimier Recital 27 Wrist Strap 1

Paired with such a glamorous watch, it’s hard to pay too much attention to a strap. Bovet knows this, and has chosen a near-black level of dark purple alligator for an unobtrusive effect. The backing of the strap is tan calf leather for increased comfort, and quick-release spring bars should you wish to play around with more exotic options. The pin buckle clasp is of course 5N red gold, just like the case.

The verdict

Bovet Dimier Recital 27 Verdict

It doesn’t really matter whether or not you’re in business with three time zones at once, because the genuine utility of the Bovet Récital 27 is more or less an added bonus. It’s a watch of captivating beauty that also happens to have convenient functionality. Every detail from the slope of the case to the layout of the openworked dial is executed with intent and mastery, which shouldn’t be a surprise given Bovet’s long history of excellence. It might be a relatively small company in its modern guise, but Bovet is capable of huge achievements.

Bovet Dimier Récital 27 pricing and availability

The Bovet Dimier Récital 27 reference in 18K red gold with purple accents is limited to 60 pieces. Price: US$105,000

Brand Bovet
Model Dimier Récital 27
Reference R270017
Case Dimensions 46.3mm (D) x 16.5mm (T, at the thickest point of the slope)
Case Material 18K 5N red gold
Water Resistance 30 metres
Crystal(s) Sapphire crystal front and back
Dial Semi-openworked, sandblasted silver with purple-lacquered guilloché accents
Strap Dark purple alligator leather with calf leather backing
Movement 13DM04-3FPL
Power Reserve 7 days (168 hours)
Functions Hours, minutes, two additional time zones with hours, minutes, day/night indication and city wheels, double-hemisphere moonphase. Running seconds and power reserve indicator visible from the exhibition caseback.
Availability Limited to 60 pieces
Price US$105,000