Armin Strom Manual Fire “Menuhin” Edition

Here’s a nice one-off piece from Armin Strom.  Armin Strom is for the second year in a row one of the main sponsors of the Menuhin Festival, an annual classical music event based in Gstaad, Switzlerand.  The event was actually founded in 1957 by Lord Yehudi Menuhin, a man who is considered to be one of the greatest violinists of the 2oth century.  Today the Menuhin Festival Gstaad has become one of the most important classical music events in all of Switzerland, with some 50 concerts played over seven weeks.  Interesting, eh?  At least for a useless trivia buff such as me 😉

Anyway, Armin Strom has designed this limited edition Armin Strom Manual Fire Limited “Menuhin Edition” with a specially decorated bridge to celebrate the event whose theme of “Fire and Sun” is in tune with the Armin Strom “elements” concept (Earth/Fire/Water/Air).  Aside from the special decoration, this piece is very similar to the Armin Strom One Week Fire watch (and also Water) that I wrote about in May 2010, just without the power reserve function.

Armin Strom Manual Fire “Menuhin” Edition

55 piece limited edition

43mm rose gold case, Mechanical manual windin Armin Strom AMW11 caliber; fitted on hornback-style alligator strap

For this special release, the gear train bridge on the underside of the movement has been embellished with hand-engraved flames and a musical pitch clef with some notes:

The Menuhin Festival website also suggests that Armin Strom has also created pieces based on all the remaining elements – water, air, earth and fire, but as of right now I do not have any information on these pieces.

Vacheron Constantin Overseas Chronograph Perpetual Calendar “New York”

Hail to the Red, White and Blue…USA! USA!

This vivid looking watch is a “boutique exclusive” from Swiss watch heavyweight Vacheron Constantin — the watch was created to celebrate the opening of Vacheron’s first boutique in the United States, located in New York.   Loyal readers of this blog may recall that this is not the first Vacheron Constantin Overseas Chronograph created exclusively for a certain geography or boutique – in fact I’ve profiled many of these special Overseas Chronograph’s in the past year:

Observe that, of all the special editions mentioned above, the “New York” edition is the only to feature a perpetual calendar — in fact this is Vacheron Constantin’s first “high complication” ever to be included in a steel Overseas case.   As for the look of the watch, I like the color choice, however I don’t particularly care for the date subdial design that Vacheron uses on this watch (as well as others) — the “31” and the “1” are a squished together in a manner that I’ve never liked, and the “9” is easily confused for a “6”.

Vacheron Constantin Overseas Chronograph Perpetual Calendar

Limited edition of 20 individually numbered pieces- Price:  $57,900 per

42mm stainless steel case, water-resistant to 150 meters, anti-magnetic soft iron cage within the case

Each watch includes two straps: one in blue alligator leather with a red lining and the other in chestnut brown calfskin

The caseback of this watch depicts the “standard” sea vessel that appears on almost all the Overseas watches – the Amerigo Vespucci.  In this case, you can also see the “N°X/20” and “Madison and 64th” engravings:

Oh, by the way — this watch is one of three new special editions that Vacheron Constantin announced to commemorate its new New York boutique — You can see the other two, as well as a few good live shots of all three, over at friend-of-the-house Hodinkee.

Vulcain Anniversary Heart Watch for ONLY WATCH 2011

My previews of the ONLY Watch 2011 watch auction for charity continue with a look at the Vulcain Anniversary Heart.  We don’t hear much about Vulcain here in the United States as distribution for the brand is limited — but this is not to say that they do not produce some splendid watches, which in fact they do.  What you need to know is that the brand is most famous for two things — 1) in 1947, Vulcain invented the first wristwatch equipped with a genuinely operational alarm function, known as the “Cricket”, and 2) Vulcain fancies itself “President’s watch”, with a Vulcain watch having been owned President Harry S. Truman and each United States President since (as well as other eminent world figures).  In the ONLY Watch 2011 piece, you get both the legendary Cricket movement and the beauty of a masterfully skeletonized piece!

Vulcain Anniversary Heart Watch for ONLY WATCH 2011

Unique Piece

42mm rose gold case (12.7mm thick), Vulcain mechanical hand-wound movement with 20-second alarm function (double-barrel, 42 hours power reserve, fitted on black alligator strap with red gold pink buckle

The mainplate, the barrel bridge and the movement barrel are handcrafted and hand-decorated by the skilled hand of a master engraver

IWC Ingenieur Double Chronograph Titanium (Ref. 3765)

WOW Watch…

Quick first look at the new IWC Ingenieur Double Chronograph Titanium watch (Ref. 3765).  Most intriguing about this new double chronograph is the choice of metal — titanium.  Apart from a few simple models in the 1980’s and 90’s, IWC notes that titanium was used exclusively in the Mercedes AMG Series — stainless steel has been the metal of choice for the Ingenieur.  Accordingly, the IWC Ingenieur Double Chronograph Titanium weighs in at a scant 130 grams, a real featherweight when compared to the Ingenieur Mission Earth at 245 grams (including steel bracelet), for example.  The new Ref. 3765 brings to the Ingenieur for the first time a split-seconds chronograph (aka a “rattrapante”) as well as a few other design tweaks.  Also, the antimagnetic soft-iron inner case is also absent from this model.  The overall look of the watch is 100% awesome, and I expect that this watch will be a real object of desire for hard-core IWC collectors and armchair watch enthusiasts alike.  IWC Ingenieur Double Chronograph Titanium price is $12,700.

IWC Ingenieur Double Chronograph Titanium (Ref. 3765)

45mm titanium case (16mm thick), blue chrono counters, vulcanized pushers, automatic mechanical IWC Caliber 79230

Note that the five bore holes around the edge of the case now feature black DLC-finished screws — this substantially enhances the technical appearance of the watch

via:  Watch International (IWC’s in-house print/electronic magazine)