A small group of journalists and watch aficionados gathered last week at Blancpain’s Fifth Avenue boutique to view the Swiss brand’s Basel novelties. A lively cocktail hour began the festivities as guests met with the new brand manager, David Gely. A menu of spring-roasted vegetables and red snapper with local peas was served while Mr. Gely projected images of Basel’s latest releases on the walls. The timepieces were also circulated for an up close view.
Tradition and innovation go hand in hand at Blancpain, and the Swiss watch brand once again proved the two qualities could complement each other in the new Villeret Grande Date. For the first time the Villeret Grande Date possess a sizeable date display which is a welcomed practical feature positioned at 6 o’clock, consisting of easy to read bold black numerals. Both the front and the reverse are sealed with a sapphire crystal covering and the timepiece itself is water resistant to 3 bar.
The 40mm case is fashioned in18k gold spilling seamlessly into a sophisticated monogrammed crown located at 3 o’clock. This watch is a certified timeless timepiece with a; mechanical automatic patented 6950 calibre, silicon balance spring and a protective shock-absorbing system, bearing all the desirable qualities of traditional watch-making. It intentionally and successfully continues to prove: there really is, ‘no school, like the old school’.
Also on display was the brand’s newest diving watch, the limited edition Ocean Commitment Bathyscaphe Chronographe. Debuted last year, at Cap d’Antibes, by Blancpain’s CEO Marc A. Hayek, it presented a few key changes to the brand’s most iconic diver. It features a deep blue dial, to go with its oceanic theme, as well as a matching blue ceramic bezel. It also became the first Bathyscaphe with a matte grey ceramic case, a new material that looks like traditional steel, but it’s lighter and stronger than before. The new chronograph, of which there will only be 250 pieces, reinforces the brand’s commitment to the cause of ocean preservation and protection.
Each watch is so sweet they could’ve been mistaken for dessert. Instead, a dark chocolate soufflé’ was the cherry on top of a perfectly elegant evening with the legendary maker of unique timepieces.
Photo Credit: Haute Time. For more information, please visit the official Blancpain website. Follow Haute Time on