We’re used to seeing plenty of calendar watches written in Mandarin around this time of year in the build-up to Chinese New year. So many in fact that if we weren’t up to our gills in festive cheer we’d be rolling our eyes. Parmigiani however has taken a different route along the Silk Road for their Hijri Perpetual Calendar, and it’s celebration of the Muslim yearly calendar.
There’s actually more of a back story here than just swapping out Gregorian with Muslim; back when he was solely a restorer of antique timepieces, Michel Parmigiani took on a pocket watch with the same kind of calendar. It evidently stuck with him when, three years later, he founded his eponymous watchmaker.
The Hijri calendar, mostly used to keep track of holy days rather than an average year, is based on exact lunar cycles, with lengths of 29 or 30 days and the occasional leap day. So far so similar. The difference however is that they can change annually by up to 12 days. Needless to say that’s a bit of a spanner in the works.
Because the months are dictated by the moon, the Hijri Perpetual Calendar links everything to a moon phase indicator, displaying the name and length of each month in Arabic script underneath. The PF009 automatic Hijri Perpetual Calendar calibre underneath makes an incredibly difficult task look incredibly simple, and even has a 48-hour power reserve to boot. Just don’t let it wind down; re-setting this thing could be painful.
All of that is set in a seriously weighty 44.5mm platinum case with a tone-matching slate grey and black subdials and white script for the contrast necessary to the delicate lettering. The entire thing is finished to Parmigiani’s impeccable standards, right down to the Côtes de Genève motif and barleygrain guilloche on the movement and rotor.
Even if you don’t follow the Hijri calendar, Parimigiani’s new piece is an exceptional collector’s piece. If you do, you might want to get your hands on it quickly; there will only be 40 of it. For now.
Price & Specs:
Model Name: Richard Mille RM 033-02 Automatic
Case/Dial: 44.5mm diameter x 14.09mm height, platinum
Water resistance: 30m
Movement: Caliber PF009, automatic winding
Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds, Hijri perpetual calendar and moon phase
Frequency: 28,800 vph (4Hz)
Power Reserve: 48h
Strap: Hermès alligator strap with pin buckle
Price: USD $80,000, available at Parmigiani boutiques and retailers starting April 2020
More details at Parmigiani’s website.