A dress watch is the epitome of elegance and every well-dressed man should consider having one in his wardrobe. James Bond might get away with wearing a dinner jacket and a Seamaster 300M, but most men don’t have to abandon the casino table and engage in life and death battles. Simplicity, understatement and elegance are operative words in this genre. Unlike those loud watches bristling with complications, a dress watch simply (and quietly) tells the time. Designed to be worn with a suit or even more formal attire, the understated spirit and timeless elegance of a dress watch mean it is the kind of watch that should last you a lifetime – and more. Blue, in all its tonalities, is the colour of the moment, but as you will see, the five models we have chosen embrace a wide range of styles.
Breguet Classique 5177 Grand Feu Blue Enamel
When it comes to classic styling, Breguet is the name that springs to mind. Abandoning the brand’s hallmark silver guilloché dials, Breguet ventures into blue territory and has given its Classique 5177 automatic dress watch a refined dark blue Grand Feu enamel dial. The rich deep blue colour of the dial is inspired by Breguet’s signature blued hands, which in this model are rhodium plated for contrast. Silver-coloured powder, which also adds relief, is used to create the Breguet numerals and other inscriptions on the dial, including the date. The 38mm white gold case with finely fluted flanks and thin welded lugs has an ultra-thin profile of just 8.8mm, ideal for slipping under a shirt cuff. Below deck, the automatic calibre with silicon components offers wearers a robust 55-hour power reserve.
Quick facts: 38mm x 8.8mm – 18k white gold case – sapphire caseback – water-resistance 30m – Grand Feu blue enamel dial – in-house automatic calibre 777Q – 55h power reserve – 28,800vph – hours, minutes, seconds and date – blue alligator strap with white gold pin buckle – EUR 23,100.
For more information, visit www.breguet.com.
Chopard L.U.C Quattro
When it was introduced in 2000, the L.U.C Quattro proved that elegance did not stand in the way of power. Packed with four mainspring barrels for a colossal 9-day power reserve, the watch managed to maintain an ultra-thin profile. The latest livery for the L.U.C Quattro is this handsome combination of a 43mm white gold case and a matte greyish-blue dial. The dial, which is quite different from most blue dials, has a vertical satin-brushed finish creating an elegant textured background for the applied hour markers and numerals. The ‘date window’ issue has been elegantly resolved by including the date inside the small seconds counter at 6 o’clock. An arch-shaped power reserve indicator at 12 o’clock and Dauphine-style hands with a strip of Super-LumiNova complete the picture. Fitted with L.U.C manufacture calibre 98.01-L with patented Quattro technology, the manual-winding COSC- certified movement with the Poinçon de Genève quality hallmark retains a lean profile of just 3.7mm. I agree that the diameter is on the large side for a dress watch, that lume on the hands might make purists shrink in horror, and the inclusion of a power reserve indicator and date might offend, but there are men out there who might appreciate a more contemporary size and slightly sportier style for their more formal engagements.
Quick facts: 43mm x 8.84mm – 18k white gold – sapphire caseback – water-resistance 50m – blue dial with satin-brushed finish – in-house manual-winding L.U.C 98.01-L calibre – patented Quattro technology for 9-day/216-hour power reserve – 28,800vph – hours, minutes, small seconds, date and power reserve indicator – Poinçon de Genève and COSC-certified – brown alligator strap with white gold pin buckle – limited edition of 50 watches – EUR 23,700.
For more information, visit www.chopard.com.
Omega De Ville Trésor Steel
Nostalgia for vintage timepieces has reached an all-time high and Omega has re-edited its 1949 Trésor men’s dress watch in stainless steel with a blue dial. The name Trésor (treasure) referred to Omega’s legendary calibre 30, which was originally housed inside the pink gold case of the 1949 model. The new De Ville Trésor is not only revisited by takes Omega’s Master Co-Axial Calibre 8910 on board with its double chronometry credentials. A 3-hand and date dress watch, the 40mm steel case has a profile of 10.6mm and features a blue dial with a brass-stamped pattern. The applied indices and hands (in 18k white gold) are slightly bent to follow the domed contours of the dial for a nice retro vibe. The manual-winding movement is one of Omega’s latest generation COSC and METAS-certified Master Chronometer calibres and as such, offers the highest standard of precision, chronometric performance and magnetic resistance.
Quick facts: 40mm x 10.6mm – stainless steel – scratch-resistant sapphire caseback -water-resistance 30m – brass-stamped blue dial with 18k indices and hands – in-house manual-winding Master Chronometer and COSC-certified calibre 8910 – 72h power reserve – 25,200vph – magnetic resistance to 15,000 gauss – hours, minutes, seconds and date – blue leather with steel pin buckle – EUR 6,000.
For more information, visit omegawatches.com.
Tutima Patria Steel
Renowned for its aviation-inspired tool watches, Tutima’s Patria collection offers elegant gold timepieces with refined in-house movements. In 2019, the Patria collection got its first stainless steel model with a fresher, more contemporary style. The 43mm case features soft curves and the signature guards hugging the fluted crown. The eye-catching deep blue dial is made from a special cold enamel technique that does not need repeated firings in a kiln, like the more traditional Grand Feu enamel. The faceted hour markers and stylized lance hands are polished to stand out against the blue dial and the small seconds counter has a circular pattern in its interior. The in-house movement is classic Glashütte with a pink gold-plated three-quarter plate and stripes. Retailing for just under EUR 5,000, this watch offers great value for money.
Quick facts: 43mm x 11.2mm – stainless steel – sapphire caseback – water-resistant 50m – cold enamel blue dial – in-house, manual-winding Tutima calibre 617 – 65h power reserve – 21,600vph – hours, minutes, small seconds – dark blue alligator strap with steel pin buckle – EUR 4,900.
For more information, please visit www.tutima.com.
Vacheron Constantin FIFTYSIX Self-Winding
For 2019, Vacheron Constantin has introduced striking blue dials to its popular FIFTYSIX collection, the brand’s entry-level offering. The 40mm Self-Winding model comes in a stainless steel case with a slim height of 9.6mm. The particular shade of blue on the dial is named ‘petrol blue’ by the brand and was specifically developed for this collection. The centre of the dial is opaline with a contrasting sunburst exterior and the white gold Arabic numerals and indices are applied to the dial for additional relief. The external and internal chapter rings are picked out in white and stand out quite prominently on the dial. There is also a date window on the dial at 3 o’clock; luckily, the background of the date window matches the blue dial and remains relatively inconspicuous. The hands and applied indices are treated with luminescent material, again, a factor that might upset purists. Overall a handsome, well-balanced watch with a slight nuance of vintage.
Quick facts: 40mm x 9.6mm – stainless steel – sapphire caseback – water-resistant 30m – petrol blue dial with white gold numerals and markers – in-house, automatic calibre 1326 – 48h power reserve – 28,800vph – hours, minutes, seconds and date – blue alligator leather with steel folding clasp – EUR 11,500.
More details at www.vacheron-constantin.com.