Kit O. Payumo

Forever Blue

Baume & Mercier has a little moon-lit travel in mind

SIHH is just around the corner and already Baume & Mercier is raring to treat us with a sneak peek. Premier to this are two new models from the brand’s most recently launched watch collections: the popular Clifton and the ladies Promesse line, which the watchmaker calls “Light in the Blue Sky.” The blue coming courtesy of the stunning blue dials, the first of which is from a mechanical watch for globetrotters.

The Clifton GMT Power Reserve is the latest ‘small complication’ in the Clifton collection. This isn’t to be confused with the major complication the brand prides itself in releasing periodically within the same line, such as the Clifton Perpetual Calendar, which Baume & Mercier released earlier last year. No, the GMT Power Reserve is decidedly much humbler in its vocation, but that isn’t saying that the dual-time indicator isn’t as useful as it is stylish.

The ideal tool for frequent flyers, the Clifton GMT Power Reserve makes the most of its 43 mm stainless steel case with polished and satin finishes, as well as the collection’s hallmark double bezel, making for a cosmpolitan and useful proposition for any occasion.

On the dial, the aforementioned deep blue is satin finished and is the ideal canvas for the amount of information it conveys. Premier of which is the arc-shaped GMT indicator at 12 o’clock. Being two tiered, the bottom white half of the arc displays hours 6 through 18 and is indicated by the white half of the hand; while the top red half shows hours 18 through 6 and is displayed by the red half of the hand.

The self-winding Soprod 9035 movement with custom oscillating weight and additional finishes as seen from the caseback

The central, rhodiumed triangle-shaped hands display the current time on matching rhodium-plated Arabic numerals and indices while the date is revealed with a white background at 3 o’clock. Last but certainly not least, is the semicircular display of the power reserve at 6 o’clock that symmetrically echoes the GMT indication above.

The Clifton GMT Power Reserve is driven by the Soprod 9035 movement, which the watchmaker once again didn’t bother hiding. Indeed, props must, once again, be given to Baume & Mercier for being completely transparent about the provenance of the movement. They didn’t even give it a faux-in-house caliber name, something other watchmakers are wont to do.

The self-winding Soprod 9035 movement has a 42-hour power reserve, circular-grained finished plate and bridges, blued steel screws and an oscillating weight decorated with Côtes de Genève.

The beauty and elegance of the Promesse Moon Phase at right says it all

A black alligator strap with square scales, tone-on-tone stitching and a triple folding buckle with security push pieces fasten the Clifton GMT Power Reserve to the wrist. And to ensure an extremely comfortable fit, curved lugs that perfectly integrate with the strap are on-hand.

The other half of Baume & Mercier’s sneak peek is occupied by the enchanting Promesse Moon Phase, the first complication to grace the elegant, historically influenced Promesse collection. Indeed, the stars certainly aligned for Baume & Mercier with this little beauty.

“Indeed, the stars certainly aligned for Baume & Mercier with this little beauty.”

Which is where the deep-blue of the lacquered dial comes in, it sets off the moonphase drawing perfectly. And in another reference to our nearest celestial neighbor, the 34 mm stainless steel case playfully injects the collection’s signature oval bezel with 30 sparkling diamonds within two crescent moon-shaped grooves that flank the dial. This interplay of round and oval has been a trademark of Promesse since its creation in 2014 but is made even more special here with the Promesse Moon Phase’ starry-night inclinations.

The Ronda 708, a Swiss-made quartz caliber, powers this moon-lit Promesse behind a solid caseback secured by four screws. And in a final touch, a glossy midnight blue alligator strap secured by a pin buckle, completes this feminine masterpiece.

Remember, this is just a sneak peek of what Baume & Mercier has in store at the SIHH 2017 watch salon. Stay tuned to this space for more on that.


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