My top five watches from WatchTime New York 2021Ricardo Sime
Imagine walking into a building and coming face to face with some of the biggest brands and independent watchmakers in horology. Well, that’s exactly what I was lucky enough to do last weekend while attending WatchTime New York. It’s an annual event located within the vast Grand Ballroom of New York City’s Gotham Hall. It allows collectors and enthusiasts to see dozens of brands they may have only heard of, in person. Each brand showcases the best of what they have to offer, leading the event to be quite a treat for those in attendance.
As I browsed the brand booths, the complications and beauty on display was just mind-blowing. Everything from dive-ready tourbillons, to 100-hour power-reserve dress watches: all at my fingertips. Among all these amazing pieces, there were five that really stood out.
Here are my top five watches from WatchTime New York.
Greubel Forsey Balancier Sport (Green)
The watches coming out of La Chaux-de-Fonds from Greubel Forsey are some of the most technically challenging and beautiful pieces in the world. So when the brand decides to do sport, it’s not surprising that the resulting watch is just spectacular. Through the use of titanium and a curved case, the Balancier Sport becomes a comfortable, easily wearable piece. Its large inclined balance wheel and gear train, both floating over the dial, remind you that it’s also haute horlogerie. Overall, what I found so captivating about the watch, other than its take on the “in” colour green, is that while its screaming delicate in one ear, it’s somehow also telling you to jump in a pool in the other.
The green theme continues. Here, it’s flavoured with a bit of audacity. Why? Well, because Angelus took a tourbillon. Skeletonised the movement it’s in. Placed it in a beautiful 46mm sapphire sandwich case. And to make things interesting, gave it an internal diving bezel and 300 metres of water resistance. Say what? That’s the reaction most people have with the U50 series of watches. And though I’ve seen one before, the cool factor has yet to wear off.
Czapek Geneve Antarctique Rattrapante Silver Grey
After holding an Antarctique, I found myself placing it as one of the best integrated designs currently out there. With beautiful finishing and a mesmerizing dial, the watch just stood out among a sea of contenders. Well, I guess Czapek felt it didn’t stand out enough, because they decided to give the Antarctique the Rattrapante treatment. And oh how beautiful that treatment is. From the blued hands, to an openwork dial showcasing the chronograph mechanism as the pusher is engaged; the watch is a feast for the eyes.
Armin Strom Tribute 1 Blue Edition
How do your redefine a dress watch? Well, you don’t necessarily redefine it. You instead mold it within the mind’s eye of your brand’s philosophies and design cues. Which is exactly what Armin Strom did with the Tribute 1. While 38mm and thin it somehow manages to provide 100 hours of power reserve. The dial is offset, differentiating itself from the grainy texture of the other surface by instead using a subtle circular pattern. That difference draws you in and never lets go.
Arnold & Son Luna Magna Platinum
I remember seeing the press releases for the Luna Magna. The watch was beautiful but even then, I didn’t fully understand how beautiful. But there I was this past Saturday, holding the reference in my hand, losing myself in that aventurine dial. The watch is absolutely stunning in person yet surprisingly wearable in all its 44mm glory. At the end of the day, it’s the type of watch an artist would have a tough time deciding whether it should be worn or drawn.