No beautiful Italian lake scene is complete without a Riva. With their wooden construction, effortless elegance and star appeal they’ve become one of the most desirable and iconic boats of the last century. To celebrate this icon, Frederique Constant have created a new Runabout Automatic limited edition watch in association with the Riva Historical Society (RHS).
In order to capture the same sense of gentle luxury and sporting edge that a Runabout has, the Frederique Constant Runabout Automatic has a 42mm stainless steel case with rose gold plating.
Rose gold will always be one of the most elegant watchmaking materials and captures the sun-drenched Mediterranean vibe perfectly. The simple lugs and crown also give it a more refined look compared to Frederique Constant’s other sporty collection, the Highlife.
As for the dial, it’s great. At first glance, it’s a fairly simple design as it’s just a time and date display with a clous de Paris guilloché centrepiece, applied indexes and sword shaped hands. But that relative simplicity hides the fact that every aspect of the watch has a vital function in addition to being pretty.
Out on the water, weather and day-night cycles are much more severe than on land, night is pitch black and during the day the sun beats down fiercely. Both of which make reading watches difficult due to either a lack of light or too much glare.
To tackle low light legibility, the hands and indexes of the Runabout Automatic are lumed, making it possible to read in the dark. For bright conditions and harsh glare, the solution is, perhaps surprisingly, the guilloché centre.
As well as being decorative, the textured surface breaks up the rays of light, diffusing them so the watch is easier to look at. It’s a really smart piece of design.
Housed inside the Runabout Automatic limited edition is the FC-303 automatic calibre (base Sellita SW200-1) with a 38-hour power reserve. It’s visible through an exhibition sapphire caseback, which is engraved with the logo of the RHS, a group dedicated to the preservation and history of Runabout boats in Italy.
Frederique Constant has been working with RHS since 2013, helping to pay tribute to the vessels at the Riva Days boating event.
In terms of accessibility, the rose gold plated version pictured here is priced at £1,820. There’s also a second version without the rose gold plating, leaving it as stainless steel colourway with a black dial, that’s priced at £1,395. Together they are limited to 888 pieces
Price & Specs:
- Model: Frederique Constant Runabout Automatic Limited Edition
- Ref: FC-303RMS5B4
- Case/dial: 42mm diameter x 11.5mm thickness, polished rose gold-plated stainless steel 2 part case, scratch resistany convex sapphire crystal, silver dial with sunray finishing and clous de paris guilloche in the centre
- Water resistance: 50m (5 bar)
- Movement: Calibre FC-303, automatic, 26 jewels
- Power Reserve: 38h
- Frequency: 28,800 vph (4 Hz)
- Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds, date
- Strap: Navy blue calf leather with beige stitching
- Price/availability: £1,820 limited to 888 pieces