Watches & Wonders 2020: Cartier Turns Old Watches Into New Again
The Santos-Dumont Watch
Year of origin: 1904
In a tribute to the early flying machines piloted by aviator Alberto Santos-Dumont, Cartier has created four limited editions. But first, it’s good to bear in mind that the Santos watch was created at the request of Santos-Dumont himself, who lamented that pocket watches were not practical during flight. Thus, the square Santos was hailed as the first modern wristwatch for men.
Back to the limited editions, each is engraved with a flying machine on its caseback. The platinum “Le Bresil” features its namesake flying machine from 1898. According to Santos-Dumont, it was his “smallest and most beautiful” machine.
Then there is the “La Baladeuse” or “n°9”, a motorised airship that Santos-Dumont used to fly across Paris in 1903. The watch is available in yellow gold. The “n°14 bis”, a sort of mechanical kite in which the pilot flew while standing in its fuselage, is designed with a steel case with yellow gold bezel and an anthracite dial.
Last but not least, the “La Demoiselle”, crafted in platinum with Panama-weave strap, is an ode to a 1908 plane, one of the first mass-produced aircrafts.
Platinum with silver dial
Yellow gold with champagne dial
Pink gold with grey dial
Diamond-set with skeleton dial
Year of origin: 1936
Boasting an Art Deco flair, the numerals are off-set at a 30° angle for a kooky yet appealing appearance. The new collection starts with four regular versions –pink gold with grey dial, yellow gold with champagne dial and platinum with silver dial. For an elevated proposition, consider the skeletonised version, endowed with the new 9623 MC skeleton movement in red gold or platinum. Each of the above variations is limited to 100 pieces.
Pasha de Cartier
Year of origin: 1985
The 2020 model kept the distinctive round case that frames a square filigree rail track but enhanced with a number of decorative yet functional elements. For one, the dial now features Clous de Paris decoration, a beautiful touch that makes the watch seem more luxurious.
Then there is the two-crown system – hidden beneath the fluted chained crown is the actual winding crown, both topped with either a blue spinel or sapphire. The chained crown also hides a personalised engraving of your choice, which is revealed when unscrewed.
The strap is another remarkable feature, with a patent-pending Smartlink system that allows length to be adjusted with a simple push button and a QuickSwitch system to change straps, again doable with a just a single push.
Available in steel, yellow gold, rose gold and diamond-set versions, there is even an option in skeleton dial.
- ImagesCourtesy of Cartier