The trend for watches with metal bracelets shows no sign of abating, specifically watches with an integrated bracelet. But what if one of your flagship collections is essentially available on only leather or rubber straps? A bracelet can radically transform the look and feel of a watch. Although it is less versatile than a strap that you can easily swap for another one, it often becomes an integral part of the watch’s design and also adds to the “all-rounder” feel of the timepiece in question. Here is a selection of some of our favourite watches that have been recently made available on a bracelet.
Blancpain Fifty Fathoms Titanium
The Blancpain Fifty Fathoms is a watch that needs little introduction. Launched in 1953, the Fifty Fathoms is one of the watches that defined the archetype of the modern dive watch. Since then, it is one of the most iconic divers of the watch industry. Already available in multiple materials – steel, titanium or gold – the brand has added three new versions, under the references 5015 and 5050 (the Grande Date model), with a titanium bracelet for a rugged, yet lightweight attire, bringing a new dimension of comfort to this masculine piece. Naturally, the inherent qualities of the Fifty Fathoms are still present, including its high-end execution.
Price and references
- 5050-12B30-98 Grande Date Titanium Bracelet CHF 18,800
- 5015-12B30-98 and 5015-12B40-98 Automatic Titanium Bracelet CHF 17,100
Breguet Marine Collection
Entirely revamped a couple of years ago, the Breguet Marine collection pays tribute to the honorary title awarded to Abraham-Louis Breguet as “Chronometer-maker to the Royal Navy” by the King of France in 1815, and to the brand’s tradition of marine chronometers. Following titanium models last year, Breguet gives its nautical collection a sportier look, with integrated gold bracelets for the Marine 5517, the Marine Chronographe 5527 and the Marine Alarme Musicale 5547. The bracelet itself is a 3-link design with a sharp profile. It appears extremely well built and executed, and, as you would expect from Breguet, magnificently finished with brushed surfaces on top and polished bevels on the sides of the links.
Price and references – Prices of the new editions with rose or white gold bracelet of the Breguet Marine 5517, 5527 and 5547 are:
- 5517BB/Y2/BZ0 time-and-date white gold EUR 47,800
- 5517BR/12/RZ0 time-and-date rose gold EUR 47,800
- 5527BB/Y2/BW0 chronograph white gold EUR 54,900
- 5527BR/12/RW0 chronograph rose gold EUR 54,900
- 5547BB/Y2/BZ0 alarm white gold EUR 58,800
- 5547BR/12/RZ0 alarm rose gold EUR 58,800
Carl F. Bucherer Manero Flyback
The Manero Flyback chronograph is an elegant vintage-inspired sports chronograph. Multiple variants have been launched since its introduction in 2016, whether in an elegant gold case or with racing-oriented inspiration. Yet, until recently, this 43mm column-wheel flyback chronograph was only available on a leather strap. Earlier this year, the brand produced a sportier and more casual edition with a stainless steel bracelet. Carl F. Bucherer opted for a flexible and comfortable 9-row bracelet that adds an all-rounder attire yet isn’t too sporty. The execution is, like the rest of the watch, top-notch.
Price and references
- 00.10919.08.53.21 Blue dial EUR 5,900
- 00.10919.08.13.21 Silver dial EUR 5,900
- 00.10919.08.93.21 Blue-grey dial EUR 5,900
- 00.10919.08.33.21 black dial EUR 5,900
Hublot Big Bang Integral
Since its launch, the Big Bang, one of the most successful products in the sports watch category, has almost always been paired with a rubber or leather strap – rubber being the most popular choice. This is all the more surprising because you could easily define the Big Bang as a watch with an integrated design… With the launch of the Big Bang Integral, Hublot has not just kitted out the flagship model with a metal bracelet; the case has been partially redesigned to adapt the integration of the bracelet. And the result is convincing. The Big Bang Integral has been presented in a 42mm case in black ceramic, titanium or gold and is equipped with the in-house Unico chronograph movement.
Price and references
- 451.CX.1140.CX Black Ceramic EUR 22,700
- 451.NX.1170.NX Titanium EUR 20,700
- 451.OX.1180.OX King Gold EUR 51,800
IWC Portugieser Chronograph 3716
One of the most popular models in the IWC line-up, the timeless Portugieser Chronograph had always been fitted on straps. This clean, elegant and functional design is now offered in a full stainless steel attire, for the recently introduced reference 3716. The 42mm in-house column-wheel chronograph Portugieser comes on a bracelet with H-shaped brushed links and polished centre links. It is closed by a concealed butterfly folding clasp. That’s quite a change and a new option for those living in warmer countries or who want a more robust watch.
Price and reference
- IW371617 silver dial with blue accents CHF 9,200 – this steel bracelet is also available as an accessory. It will fit all steel models in the Portugieser Chronograph 3716 collection (but won’t fit the previous 3714 watches).