Second to telling the time where you live, the most useful function a watch can have is the ability to tell you the time wherever else you might be. Travelers used to jet setting with a dedicated “world time” watch often never go back to a single time zone watch given the ease of reading the time at home and the time in their current location. Now I’ll do my best to use the word “time” sparingly for the rest of this article.
World time watches usually rely on reference city discs that clutter up dials with lots of text. Cartier was dedicated to offering a more visually attractive world time watch with a cleaner dial. Their solution to the clutter problem was to move the city disc to the side of the case. The clever move gives the Calibre Multi Time Zone watch a sapphire crystal window on the left side of the case where you can see reference city names. Wanting the watch to be as full featured as possible, Cartier further enhanced the world time function to take into account the difference between “winter and summer time” (DST).
As part of the “clean aesthetic” concept that Cartier was going for, the Calibre Multi Time Zone is devoid of extra pushers all around the case. The crown guard typical on Calibre style cases actually functions as a hidden pusher to change the time zones on the watch. In all, this is one of the most non-obvious complicated watches to be released for 2011.
The lovely dial has a mixture of engravings and applied black to help give it a distinct visual “pop” – while no true Cartier watch of today is complete without blued steel hands and Roman numerals. The main dial shows the time of your current location, while the dial in the center displays the reference time. It uses a single hand with two ends to indicate AM or PM times. The “sun” end of the hand is for AM, while the “moon” end of the hand is for PM.
Even after all this there was still room on the dial for something extra, so Cartier invented an experimental complication called the “jet lag indicator.” The concept revolves around the idea that a luxury item should help improve the lives of their owners. Before traveling, the wearer of this watch can adjust the time zone to any place while the jet lag indicator takes into consideration the home time, and tells you the change in hours. You can use this to decide how much rest you’ll need when traveling. As I mentioned, it is a fun and experimental complication, though the intent of it is sound.
The mechanics are led by the in-house made Cartier 9909 MC automatic movement with a 48 hour power reserve. Cartier places it in a 45mm wide version of the well-received Calibre style case – a good decision. It comes on a black alligator strap. In 18k rose gold the Cartier Calibre Multi Time Zone watch is priced at $39,900, and $42,100 in 18k white gold. www.cartier.com.
Ariel Adams is the Haute Living Watch Editor and also publishes the luxury watch review site aBlogtoRead.com.
- 45mm wide Calibre style case in 18k rose or white gold.
- Disc with city names for world time seen through side-mounted case window
- Reference time dial with AM/PM indication via style of hand
- “Jet lag” indicator hand
- Engraved dial with applied black for impressive visual pop