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Grand Prix View: GPHG 2015 Ladies Watches

With the pre-selected Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève watches now visible on the organization’s own site (gphg.org), enthusiasts can see all the nominees for the annual Oscars of the watchmaking industry on October 29. Until then, iW will annotate the list of nominated watches for you with a series of posts, organized by category, so you can put each nominee into context.

All told, seventy-two timepieces will be competing to win the Aiguille d’Or Grand Prize or one of the sixteen prizes awarded for creative talent and watchmaking expertise. Readers can submit their own vote for the Public Prize at the GPGH site, where each voter also enters a contest to win a Glorious Knight Chronograph by DeWitt. The 2015 list of winners will be announced at the 15th

Today we look at the watches nominated in the Ladies category.

Audemars Piguet Millenary Woman

While the Millenary was first created a couple of decades ago, this white gold addition to the line has a new hand-wound manufacture movement, the Millenary 5201, much of which is gorgeously visible on the dial side the watch. Its functions are hours, minutes and small seconds. The offset diamond-paved hours and minutes dial features Roman numerals typical of the Millenary, and the diamond-rimmed mother-of-pearl small seconds subdial is at 8 o’clock. The oval-shaped case and lugs are also set with diamonds.

DeLaneau Rondo 42 Peony

The DeLaneau Rondo 42 Peony’s minimalist design is embellished with diamonds totaling about 6 carats, augmented by the gem-studded peony at 10 o’clock. Grand feu, plique à jour and paillon enameling techniques are used to create this unique piece, and the black dial, interrupted only by the flower and its sparkling yellow sapphire center, as well as the graceful hours and minutes hands, combine to create an elegant look. Inside is an automatic movement.

Hermès Arceau Petite Lune with Diamonds

Saddlery is never far from the heart of Hermes, and the Arceau is no exception, taking its name from a strategic part of a stirrup. The Arceau Petite Lune with Diamonds is a 38mm steel and gem-set member of the collection, and it is equipped with a self-winding Hermès H1837 movement and a moon-phase module created by Dubois-Dépraz. The mother-of-pearl dial features the date at 6 o’clock and a moon-phase aperture between 10 o’clock and 11 o’clock. And in another nod to the brand’s equestrian roots, the alligator leather strap is crafted at the in-house workshops using saddle-stitching technique.

Hublot Big Bang Broderie

The Big Bang Broderie begins its journey to fruition with a charcoal sketch to identify the placement of the embroidery stitches. This sketch is then used to create a blueprint for the fabric design that will eventually take shape on the dial—a skull embroidered on tulle. Switzerland-based Bischoff Textil produced the embroidery, while Busch Composites, also headquartered in Switzerland, devised a process to surround the delicate embroidery in resin and then layer it with carbon fiber to amplify its texture and strength. Inside is the HUB1110 automatic movement with a 42-hour power reserve, featuring hours, minutes and seconds. This is a limited edition of 200 pieces.

Piaget Limelight Gala

Inspired by a vintage piece from the early 1970s, the Piaget Limelight Gala has a round 32mm pink gold case with two opposing extended lugs that hug the wrist. The bezel and lugs are studded with progressively sized brilliant-cut diamonds, adding to the symmetry of the overall look. The simple dial has Roman numerals with the Piaget logo intercepting the numeral at three. Inside is the manual-winding 430P movement visible through the sapphire caseback. The watch comes on a black satin strap.

Ulysse Nardin Jade

Ulysse Nardin’s Jade collection, first introduced in 2013, is significant for many reasons, but perhaps most notably because it is the first ladies collection in which the company has offered an in-house movement: the UN-310 with hours, minutes, small seconds, date and power reserve. This latest rose gold rendition has a pusher at the four o’clock position on the watchcase designed to change the function of the crown: position one winds the watch, while position two sets the date forward and backward. Position three sets the time. Each function is then actuated by turning the crown forward or backward without any need to pull it out. The enchanting mother-of-pearl dial features Arabic numerals and diamonds.

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