Even in such unusual times, there are pockets of progress worthy of celebration. Among them is a new season of watchmaking innovation and ingenuity, continuing a proud tradition of advancement within a centuries-old craft. The following is a selection of outstanding novelties for 2021 by some of the best names in haute horlogerie.

1. Patek Philippe In-line Perpetual Calendar 

Patek Philippe In-line Perpetual Calendar

Patek Phillipe is revolutionising perpetual calendars with a single-line display for seamless reading. The self-winding Ref.5236P-001 In-line Perpetual Calendar presents the day, date and month in a linear aperture, filing three patents in the process. This innovative triptych is complemented by leap year and day/night apertures at 4 and 8 o’clock respectively, all set within a 41.3mm hand-finished platinum case.


See also: Patek Phillipe unveils its new Nautilus models


2. Audemars Piguet Royal Oak

Audemars Piguet Royal Oak

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The Royal Oak Selfwinding Chronograph makes a technical leap forward as Audemars Piguet equips its iconic model with the Calibre 4401. Originally developed for the Code 11.59 series, this in-house movement comprises a flyback chronograph and patented zero resetting mechanism, now housed in a 41mm 18-carat pink gold case with a tapisserie dial in vivid blue or rich brown. 


See also: Introducing the Code 11.59 by Audemars Piguet Selfwinding Chronograph collection


 

3. Omega Seamaster 300

Omega Seamaster 300

As a nod to its proud history in ocean exploration, bronze is uplifted in the new Seamaster 300. Omega crafts the 41mm model from bronze gold, a unique alloy of 37.5% gold, palladium and silver that boasts a soft pink hue and incomparable corrosion-resistance. Its slow patina over time will complement the bronze alloy (CuSn8) dial and brown ceramic bezel ring with diving scale outlined in vintage Super-LumiNova.


See also: Discover the special Omega watches celebrating the Tokyo 2021 Olympics


4. Hublot Big Bang Unico Yellow Magic

Hublot Big Bang Unico Yellow Magic

Hublot celebrates the sunny side of life with the Big Bang Unico Yellow Magic, the first timepiece to wear the manufacture’s patented ceramic in bright yellow. That same vibrant shade continues across the indications and rubber strap, framing the in-house Unico HUB1280 movement at the heart of this 250-piece limited-edition collectible with its radiance.

5. Bvlgari Octo Finissimo Tadao Ando

Bvlgari Octo Finissimo Tadao Ando

A small gold curve on a time spiral set against a lacquered blue sky represents the crescent moon, or mikazuki. Japanese architect Tadao Ando designed the meditative nocturnal motif to evoke the transitory nature of time within the new 160-piece Bvlgari Octo Finissimo Tadao Ando, even as black dauphine hands track the passing of hours, minutes and seconds in a small-seconds counter.

6. Longines Silver Arrow

Longines Silver Arrow

Turbocharging time is the vintage re-edition of the Silver Arrow, a Longines 1950s horological reference named after the era’s famous German sports car. Today’s 38.5mm steel version evokes the heritage of the original timepiece, from the silver opaline dial with striated indices and sword-shaped hands to the boxy sapphire glass and matte brown leather strap. Flip it over to check out the Silver Arrow emblem on the screw-down caseback.

7. Slim d’Hermès C’est la fête

Slim d’Hermès C’est la fête

Hermès makes no bones about its expertise in paillonné enamelling and engraving, using these fine crafts to transpose its C’est la fête men’s silk scarf onto a dial. The Slim d’Hermès C’est la fête sees the grinning skeleton in a tailcoat and top hat astride his horse, anticipating the after-hours adventures night brings. This singular rock-’n’-roll aesthetic will adorn the wrists of just eight people around the world.


See also: Hermès H08 watch collection: Perfect for the sporty gentleman


8. Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso Hybris Mechanica Calibre 185 Quadriptyque

Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso Hybris Mechanica Calibre 185 Quadriptyque

Stunning horological experts with its ultracomplicated mechanics and four functioning faces, a first for the watchmaking world, is the Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso Hybris Mechanica Calibre 185 Quadriptyque. A host of astronomical trackers, including three lunar cycles and moonphases in both hemispheres, supplies a deep reading of the cosmos and predicts events such as supermoons and eclipses. Unadulterated savoir faire informs this magnum opus.

9. Endeavour Centre Seconds Concept x seconde/seconde/

Endeavour Centre Seconds Concept x seconde/seconde/

The watchmaker that sometimes eschews its name on dials is now erasing time on the wrist. In a collaboration with Parisian artist Romaric Andre, alias seconde/seconde/, H. Moser & Cie. swaps the hour hand with a pixelated eraser on the Funky Blue fumé dial in the Endeavour Centre Seconds Concept x seconde/seconde/. This 20-piece steel online-only edition comes with a framed artistic rendering of the watch and the missing hour hand.

10. Ulysse Nardin Diver X Skeleton

Ulysse Nardin Diver X Skeleton

For a whole greater than the sum of its parts, Ulysse Nardin meshes its Diver and Skeleton X lines to create the Diver X Skeleton. Striking blue PVD coats 44mm of steel with a concave unidirectional bezel fitted with a Carbonium inlay. The X-shaped skeleton construction of the automatic Calibre UN317 braces the interior, with straps available in blue or orange and restricted to 175 pieces each.

11. Tudor Black Bay Chrono

Tudor Black Bay Chrono

Fans love the Black Bay Chrono for combining a diver’s watch with the ultimate racetrack companion, the chronograph. To go with diving suits or a leather jacket-and-boots combo is the 41mm steel novelty featuring a tachymetric scale, opaline dial and pushers inspired by the first generation of Tudor chronographs. Ramp up the sporty aesthetic with a black leather strap and removable bund that snugly grips the wrist.