With the holiday season upon us, it’s again a fantastic opportunity for the perfect gift for a loved one – or even ourselves. So we have put together a gift guide for the watch enthusiast, with an eye towards affordable brands that offer strong bang for the buck. Let us commence in that order.
Let’s start with a refined classic. The Cartier Tank has been around for exactly 100 years now – it was created by Louis Cartier between 1916 and 1917. And the most classic is perhaps the Tank Louis Cartier, which is available in just thirteen variations, exclusively in 18k yellow, white or pink gold, with or without diamonds, and even with three wonderfully Cartier, skeletonized, hand-wound versions.
Our picks shall be the Cartier Tank Louis Cartier small and large models in 18k yellow gold – reference numbers are W1529856 and W1529756, respectively – and, for a yet more affordable option, the Cartier Tank Solo XL in steel.
The Louis Cartier makes for a stunning, everlasting his & hers option, with the Large model measuring 33.7 by 25.5mm and 6.35mm thick, while the Small model measures 39.5 by 22mm and 6.35mm thick. Both come have a quartz movement inside – a largely unnoticeable detail, as neither watches feature a running seconds hand, as is normal for the Cartier Tank. Don’t let the measurements fool you either, the Tank is to be tried on to be fully appreciated – and at a time, when the large watch trend is reversing 180°, you’ll be ahead of the curve with something as sophisticated and proportional, as a Tank variant named after its very creator.
The Tank Solo XL in steel comes with an automatic movement – Cartier has confirmed to us that the Tank Solo XL Automatic now comes with the Cartier 1847 MC in-house automatic caliber, a terrific upgrade for the price. If you’re thinking Cartier Tank Solo, its yellow gold variant with a quartz movement is also a very competitively priced, timeless-looking piece at a great price.
Moving on to Nomos we find the Zürich collection to be an enthusiasts’ favorite – those who live and breath watches know full well how worldtimer watches have been enjoying a strong renaissance in recent years, as the tech and functionality set them apart from other types of watches.
The Zürich is equipped with Nomos’ worldtimer DUW 5201 movement, a self-winding caliber that allows for the quick adjustment of its worldtime display by the use of a pusher – no fiddling with the crown is required. It comes adjusted in six positions, a treat watch enthusiasts will appreciate as that little bit extra for better timekeeping.
Available with a white and a midnight blue dial, do bear in mind the two limited edition variants made earlier in 2017 for the for The Hour Glass: a white dial version in a 35-piece run and another 15 pieces with a salmon-colored dial make up this extremely limited edition of one of Nomos’ finest watches.
The TAG Heuer Autavia, without a shadow of a doubt, is a watch that received the acclaim of the global watch enthusiast community, largely due to TAG Heuer consulting with the world’s watch lovers, asking them to vote on their favorite vintage Autavia that they wished to see the brand revive for 2017. The TAG Heuer Autavia comes with an in-house caliber and in a range of options, with the latest “panda dial” reference CBE2111.BA0687 produced for the 85th birthday of Jack Heuer being a coveted new addition to this successful collection.
Another enthusiast-oriented release for 2017 is the Tudor Heritage Black Bay S&G, short for “steel and gold”. Don’t be fooled by the precious two-tone look, this Tudor won’t break the bank, thanks to the clever use of gold capping on the bracelet that helped reduce the quanity of precious metal required, hence this retro-inspired beauty at an incredibly competitive price.
Inside of the reference M79733N-0002 you’ll find the brand’s manufacture MT5612 COSC-certified chronometer movement with automatic winding and a superb, 70-hour power reserve – no detail is overseen here. Water resistance is an impressive 200m, meaning you can rock this watch day in and out, wherever you go – it’s a gift no one will ever leave in a drawer.
We have recently looked at a selection of fantastic Longines timepieces as we celebrated the brand’s 185th anniversary. If you are in the process of looking for the perfect gift to a watch enthusiast loved one – or yourself –, we recommend reading that article to catch up on where Longines is coming from; the brand’s extensive history is all the reassurance you’ll need when scratching your head, trying to figure what’s the ideal gift.
As such, the Longines Flagship Heritage 60th Anniversary 1957-2017 is a small but impressive collection of three models, inspired by a 1950s original. Cased in stainless steel, 18k yellow or pink gold, all measuring an elegant and retro 38.5mm, these limited edition pieces are the perfect gift for someone who values timeless, proven designs from a manufacture with real history.
From eternal pieces like the Cartier Tank or the Longines Heritage all the way to new-old superstars from TAG Heuer and Tudor, as well as a modern classic from Nomos, we hope we could help ease your mind. One last suggestion, if we may: be sure to check out these pieces hands-on to get the best impression!
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