In recent years, Ralph Lauren has made watches with complicated movements and intriguing designs, somehow reflecting Mr Lauren’s love for Haute Horlogerie. It was time for the brand’s watch division to focus on an important sector: accessible luxury – exactly where Polo RL operates in terms of fashion goods. As such, the brand now introduces a new collection of watches with the brand’s iconic polo player reproduced in vivid detail on the dial. Sporty look, signature RL details, automatic Swiss movements and a wide variety of strap options – including cool Madras silk necktie material. Let’s have a look at this very Ralph Lauren new Polo Watch Collection.
Laid-back sophistication and casual elegance are bywords of Ralph Lauren’s universe. Now a colossal lifestyle emporium offering everything from tableware collections to pinstripe tailored suits, Ralph Lauren incorporated watches into the mix in 2008. Models borrowing equestrian motifs like the Stirrup or capturing the rugged bygone glamour of an African Safari (Safari collection), and others like the Automotive collections, inspired by Ralph Lauren’s impressive car collection, including his fabulous 1938 Bugatti Type 57SC, proved that his hunch about watchmaking was spot-on. Unlike other fashion brands with watches that are made to last a season, Ralph Lauren’s passion for all things mechanical has translated into top-quality Swiss-made mechanical movement.
Ralph Lauren, the famous American designer, built his lifestyle emporium around a concept of laid-back sophistication. To incarnate this concept of casual yet sophisticated apparel Ralph Lauren settled on the name ‘Polo’ and its power to evoke the elite equestrian sport and all its trappings in 1967. As the designer explains, “I called it Polo because it had a sensibility that was sporty and international. It was sophisticated and stylish. Polo had an imagery that represented a lifestyle and style is forever“. Ralph Lauren’s 1972 Polo shirt became a wardrobe staple among America’s preppy Ivy-League students and is still the collection that most people associate with the brand today.
Four polo players
The polo player logo featured on Ralph Lauren’s Polo shirts is 3D-printed in multiple layers of colour in the centre of the dial. The figure of the polo player, astride his pony and with his mallet raised and about to strike, is large and vividly coloured. The 42mm case has a height of 12.35mm and comes in either a stainless steel case with a polished finish or a matte black PVD-coated steel case. The fixed bezel is notched, the crown is engraved with the logo of the polo player and the case is water-resistant to 100 metres.
Like the four polo players on a team, the Ralph Lauren Polo Watch Collection comes with four colour combinations: a lacquered green dial and green aluminium bezel; a lacquered navy dial with a blue aluminium bezel; and two lacquered black dials, one with a steel case and the other with an all-black matte PVD steel case, both with black aluminium bezels. The bezels are treated with an elox coating, a process of electrolytic oxidation that gives the aluminium a tough, corrosion-resistant layer.
The aluminium bezel features the name Polo printed in white at 12 o’clock and 10-minute markings, all highlighted with luminescence. The large white Arabic numerals on the dial and the sword-shaped hands are also treated with luminescent material for visibility in low light conditions.
Tie it on
Customisation is the name of the game and there are countless strap/bracelet options. Designed with a DIY quick pin release system, exchanging one strap for another can be done in minutes. For starters, all four models are available on a sporty stainless steel 3-link bracelet (black sandblasted PVD bracelet for black PVD model), all with an interchangeable pin bar and quick-release mechanism. There are also classic tan calfskin leather straps with ecru stitching and, a genuine Ralph Lauren touch, straps made from stripy Madras silk in colourful tones like the material used on the brand’s neckties (Ralph Lauren’s first creation was a necktie).
What makes the customisation options even more playful is that you can combine a tan leather strap on one half and a colourful Madras silk strap on the other, or go for a full Madras silk tie look. In addition, the black and blue dial models can also be customised with NATO-style straps in printed leather in bold three-tone colours to match the dial.
The movement is a Sellita SW-200 automatic with a 38-hour power reserve and 4Hz frequency. Visible through the sapphire crystal caseback, the movement features Côtes de Genève and perlage finishes.
The prices of the Ralph Lauren Polo Watch Collection vary according to the strap or bracelet options chosen. The models on tan calfskin leather straps retail for EUR 1,780. The green model with a combination of a Madras silk tie strap and a tan calfskin strap retails for EUR 1,980. Two models (blue and black) with leather NATO-style straps retail for EUR 1,630 while the black PVD model on a leather NATO-style strap retails for EUR 1,780. A similar price differentiation exists between the three models on stainless steel bracelets (green, black and blue dials), which retail for EUR 1,980, while the all-black steel model with a matching PVD-coated bracelet which costs EUR 2,180.
More information at ralphlauren.