As the world’s oldest fine watch manufacture in continuous operation, Vacheron Constantin has been making timepieces that delight and enchant since 1755. Despite its hallowed history, the manufacture has always been about innovation and surprises, experimenting with unexpected contrasts and overturning conventions to create timepieces that make their wearers (and viewers) go wow — much like the great pop artists of our time. Here is a selection of the maison’s timepieces if you’re considering something special for someone (or yourself) this festive season.
01: Traditionnelle Tourbillon Chronograph
The Traditionnelle family is inspired by the most rigorous Genevan high horology traditions, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t have its fair share of surprises. Consider, for instance, the Traditionnelle Tourbillon Chronograph, a 42.5mm timepiece in pink gold. Instead of its usual position at 6 o’clock, the tourbillon here is at 12 o’clock. For the first time at Vacheron Constantin, the tourbillon is combined with a monopusher chronograph, which can track elapsed time to a pretty unusual 45 minutes — one for the football fans out there, perhaps?
02: Traditionnelle Tourbillon
A great standalone timepiece or as a bedazzling counterpart to the Traditionnelle Tourbillon Chronograph above, the Traditionnelle Tourbillon is a self-winding watch in a 39mm pink gold case. A tourbillon with a carriage inspired by the brand’s Maltese Cross logo sits harmoniously next to decorative elements including 46 diamonds and a mother-of-pearl dial, making this a winner for those who like their horology with high shine.
03: Overseas Dual Time
Whether you are already travelling or just dreaming of it, the Overseas Dual Time would be a solid companion on your wrist. Housed in a 41mm pink gold case, it is powered by an automatic movement with a power reserve of nearly three days. The watch combines a dual time zone display with a day/night indicator and a date hand, complications that will certainly help to keep globetrotters on top of time. (You’re on your own, however, when it comes to airport delays.)
04: Patrimony Retrograde Day-Date
Inspired by mid-century Vacheron Constantin models, the Patrimony family is about stylistic pureness and a beautiful balance between lines and curves. The Patrimony Retrograde Day-Date features a relatively uncommon combination of two retrograde displays: one for the date and one for the day. The deep blue of the dial is complemented by a brushed sunray finish — a combination that gives this 42.5mm self-winding watch an appeal that’s both contemporary and timeless.
05: Patrimony Perpetual Calendar Ultra-Thin and Patrimony Manual-Winding
A great pair of watches for a horology-appreciating couple or just one serious enthusiast, these Patrimony watches are minimalist classics at their best. On the left, housed in a 41mm-wide pink gold case that’s just 4.05mm thick, the Patrimony Perpetual Calendar Ultra-Thin will keep track of time without adjustment until 2100. Aside from analogue day, month and date displays, it also features a moon-phase display with two gold moons.
On the right, the Patrimony Manual-Winding is a study in pure classicism. Powered by a hand-wound movement, this 36mm pink gold timepiece is all refined purity, with one very special, hidden touch: The rim of its caseband is set with 62 round-cut diamonds. Some of the best surprises, after all, are subtle.