Cool, icy cool. That’s what we have here, in a watch that brings to mind the German form over function we know from Sinn. With an air of indestructability, the Vero Open Water is a watch in which I can see no trace of vintage, or even the slightest trace of retro homage. And this is always refreshing especially with such a contemporary design that speaks to you from the wide black DLC 60-minute bezel to the understated style of the deep midnight blue dial. This is a proper tool with a Swiss heart, proudly assembled and regulated by this small independent company in the USA.
Inspired by the great outdoors of the US Pacific Northwest, Vero has a distinct language that speaks to the tool watch purist in me, in a very good way. The Crown Point version has a deep blue dial, with a strict formality in the dial language. Sharp, white lume-filled indices have the quadrants longer and a classic double baton at 12, for a quick read-out of the time at night or dusk.
The crisp baton handset is black and lume-filled with a clean white needle seconds hand as a sharp compliment. The minimalism is clearly formed through a focus on functionality with a contemporary edge, and the beauty of a no-date dial.
The bezel is a tough, wide and rounded black DLC with a charming double zero at 12 rather than the ubiquitous triangle, and a clean modern font matching the aesthetics. The crown has a tool-knurled finish nestled between solid crown guards, aiding in the 200m depth rating making this a proper go-everywhere timepiece.
The North Coast model is an even purer vision of tooliness, with a restrained dark grey dial and seconds hand, framed by a case-and bracelet matching bead blasted bezel. This could have been a bit too austere for some, but Vero have lifted the look with a well-though out pop of blue on the bezel. The bright blue filled markers on the 60-minute bezel are complemented by four outer dashes of blue to mark the classic diver’s watch 0-15 minute quarter. The design team at Vero shows restraint, while also making us understand the importance of small, understated details that seem to be lacking in many over-ceramicized bezels framing coloured dials with three font colours. An elegant tool that inspires confidence, while speaking a quiet language of self control.
The pure functionality and 200m rating usually comes with the drawback of largesse in many smaller brands, but here the specs are spot-on for many of us, and ergonomic at 40mm. The case is fully bead blasted for that Leica-like modern edge, with short, angled lugs at a 47mm lug-to-lug, so this will sit great on both bracelet and strap, and I do feel a strong need for the matching NATO strap.
The sapphire crystal is nice and flat, with a seriously impressive total thickness of the Open Water at 11mm, designed to be compact and user friendly. The superb value of the Vero Open Water is thoroughly underlined by the use of the Sellita SW200 movement, which, like a certain German tool watch brand is also regulated in-house after assembly making for an accurate +/-5 seconds per day. In a sub $900 USD watch this is a genuinely impressive feat.
The Vero Open Water, price and availability:
The Vero Open Water is $810USD on a matched NATO strap and $875USD on steel bracelet. For more details, visit Vero Watch
Made in partnership with Vero. However, the opinions expressed in this article are our own in accordance with our Editorial Policy.