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Our Founder’s Favourite Releases from Watches & Wonders 2024

Parmigiani Toric Petite Seconde 40mm

You’ll rarely find me writing these type of articles, because honestly who wants to read the wish list of some watch nerd with questionable taste. But you know what, this year I’ve decided to buck the trend. If you’re going to own a watch news platform you might as well inflict your opinions on others. So to go alongside the slew of great timepieces we’ve already covered, here are some of my personal favourite releases from Watches & Wonders 2024.

After a week of traipsing the hallowed halls of the Palexpo searching for a good coffee, trying to explain to our social media apprentice that capturing an image of the world’s most famous footballer isn’t as important as our Patek photography appointment, hoping I might see daylight, I’ve probably seen over 500 new watches. By no means did I see everything (especially from the ‘pirates’ outside the Palexpo) so this list is strictly reserved for watches at the official show that I got hands on with. In my experience it’s the only way you can actually tell whether or not you like a watch (something we try and do as much as possible here at Oracle Time).

Zenith Defy Revival A3648 ‘Plongeur’

Zenith Defy Revival A3648 Plongeur

I’m a sucker for a brightly accented watch with an angular profile so when I saw the press release for the Defy Revival A3648 I knew I was in trouble. Arriving at the Zenith stand I’m happy to report I wasn’t disappointed. The Revival ‘Plongeur’ (a nickname derived from the first mechanized submarine) is about as faithful to the 1969 original as possible, however this is one of the rare occasions when a vintage re-issue is actually smaller than the original (37mm compared to 39mm) and I think it’s better for it.

It still has the original’s impressive 600-meter water resistance, orange bezel – sapphire instead of plexiglass, of course – and tetradecagonal inner bezel. Inside is a modern calibre in the Elite 670. It’s no El Primero, but it doesn’t really need to be as it’s not a chrono. It also has a solid power reserve of 50 hours and keeps the cost at £6,975.

More details at Zenith.

Chopard L.U.C Quattro Spirit 25

Chopard L.U.C Quattro Spirit 25

Limited to just 100 pieces and priced around £41,000 this is strictly grail territory, but there’s something about this limited-edition release that’s captivating. The white gold case and the grand feu enamel finish work brilliantly with the minimal dial layout, hand painted minute track and central jumping hours.

It’s quirky yet reserved and in my opinion this colour combination works a lot better than the rose gold-cased white dial version we’ve previously seen. Proportionally it’s also great on the wrist, measuring 40mm and 10.3mm thick. These are impressive specs considering under the bonnet is a beast of a movement. The L.U.C 98-06-L is the world’s first manual wind calibre with four barrels which when fully wound equate to 192 hours of power or 8 days. Forget weekend proof, this watch is week proof.

More details at Chopard.

Gerald Charles Masterlink

Gerald Charles Masterlink

Gerald Charles are a brand that haven’t really resonated with me in the past despite being founded by the greatest watch designer ever. But seeing the Masterlink in the mettle and speaking to the designer Octavio Garcia about the ergonomics of the bracelet and the way it transitions from gracefully curved ‘smile’ at six o’clock to flat totally won me over. The Masterlink doesn’t just look retro, it could genuinely be vintage. The cohesive design is subtle and certainly won’t appeal to everyone, but I love it.

The 38mm steel case houses the GCA 5401 micro-rotor automatic movement developed by Vaucher Manufacture Fleurier and has a power reserve of 50 hours. More importantly, the Masterlink measures under 8mm thick, making it incredibly comfortable. Priced at £18,400, the watch comes with a five-year warranty. An important aspect when purchasing a watch from a younger brand.

More details at Gerald Charles.

Czapek Antarctique Green Meteor

Czapek Antarctique Green Meteor

It was very hard to not include the Czapek Gouttea D’eau as one of my favourite releases from Watches & Wonders this year. If you saw our collaboration with Christopher Ward, you may have noticed we have a thing for ripple effect, 3-dimensional dials. But overall, the integrated bracelet case shape of the Antarctique appeals to me more than the dressy Promenade.

While it is simply a new dial on an existing collection, the dial in question is a green lacquered Gibeon meteor complete with its classic Widmanstätten pattern and it looks epic. Limited to 100 pieces and priced at (this seems to be everyone’s magic number this year) they’re currently taking orders; however, delivery won’t be until Q2 2025.

More details at Czapek.

Parmigiani Toric Petite Seconde 40mm

Parmigiani Toric Petite Seconde 40mm

The Toric was the first watch unveiled by master watchmaker and restorer Michel Parmigiani back in 1996 and for 2024 the Fleurier brand revisit this model, giving it a refined makeover that feels fitting of such an important collection. The standout model for me is the platinum cased, hand-grained, sage green dial.

Measuring 40.6mm diameter x 8.8mm thickness and powered by the manual wind PF780 it has 60 hours of power reserve and is expertly finished with Côtes de Fleurier (the brand’s twist on the more usual Côtes de Geneve), hand beveled edges and sand blasted gold plating. From whichever angle you look at this it’s beautiful and at a price of around £50,000 it ought to be.

More details at Parmigiani.

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About the author

Tom Pettit

Born into a family of watch lovers, Tom is both co-founder of Oracle Time and the driving force behind its creative direction. A lover of retro watch design, surfing and the great outdoors his usual glasses are nicely rose-tinted.