Talking about a success story, the Baltic MR01 has recently been one of the most discussed and sought-after models on the micro-brand scene. And rightfully so, as with its Calatrava-styled case, its thin micro-rotor movement, its charm-packed vintage design and its accessible price, there was a lot to love… so much that the watch is still in shortage a year after its release. But today is your chance to get one. And not a standard one, but a super-cool limited edition with a vintage roulette-styled, Patek-inspired dial, paying tribute to the early Calatrava 96 story. Be aware (and fast), I’m pretty sure there won’t be enough of these MR01 Blue Roulette for A Collected Man.
Everything in the Baltic X A Collected Man MR01 Blue Roulette screams 1930s/1940s Calatrava, but with the right dosage of modernity to make it cool on the wrist in 2022. Already with the classic editions of the Baltic MR01, the inspiration was clear; the Patek Philippe Calatrava reference 96. And there’s nothing bad in this, as this very watch is the epitome of the no-nonsense dress watch. But when London-based watch curator A Collected Man decides to take on the concept, they have brought something quite unique, something different to this existing accessible dress watch. Something that is once again linked to the rich history of the reference 96, in the name of the rare and original “roulette” dial.
Revisiting an aesthetic from the past, the roulette dial owes its name to its oddly attractive, surprisingly modern and graphic design reminiscent of a casino game known as the roulette. Basically, a step forward in the idea of the sector dial with more numerals, more compartments and different segment designs. It has an uncommon configuration and scale of numerals that gives this watch a unique aesthetic. But as often with Baltic, it’s not just about recreating the past, but it’s also about making it relevant today.
As such, the dial construction of the MR01 Blue Roulette relies on levels and textures; from the contrasting brushed rings stepping down to a subtle grain on the base, and all rendered in a contemporary blue colour that brings more liveliness, more boldness to this already original design. The hidden gem that is the roulette-style dial is elevated to a new level here, with a modern reinterpretation. As said by Baltic Creative Director Jas Rewkiewicz, the roulette dial “feels like something you discover once you’ve grown an appreciation for sector dials,” as an even more seasoned, more niche take on the concept.
This textured, graphic blue dial also features the oddly-positioned small second counter of the classic Baltic MR01, at 7 o’clock, and with its own concentric pattern. For the occasion of this collaboration with A Collected Man, the MR01 Blue Roulette inaugurates new dauphine-shaped polished hands, replacing the classic leaf-shaped hands of the standard collection.
All other attributes have been kept (almost) intact. As such, the voluntarily compact case still measures 36mm in diameter, with a height of 9.9mm with its plexiglass crystal included. The muted, almost utilitarian design typical of the Calatrava watches has been reinforced here with brushed surfaces all around, including a vertically-brushed bezel. The MR01 Blue Roulette is worn on a grained calf strap in taupe – a sort of signature for ACM.
Inside the case is the same micro-rotor movement found across Baltic’s MR01 range – a movement made by the Hangzhou manufacture. This thin, automatic movement is most noticeable for its architecture usually reserved for high-end makers, with a micro-rotor that allows keeping the height below 4mm and showing most of the parts. It is also a quite large calibre, at 30mm.
Availability & Price
The Baltic MR01 Blue Roulette for A Collected Man will be a limited edition of 300 pieces, available exclusively from the London-based watch specialist. The watches will be offered online on this page from the 21st of September, at 14:00 BST (15:00 Europe Time, 09:00 New York Time) and priced at GBP 500.
For more details about the MR01, please visit baltic-watches.com.