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5 Best Timepieces Spotted At Geneva Watch Days 2021

These beauties caught our eye at the last phygital watch fair of the year — read all about them.

Image: Gerald Genta

01 | Gerald Genta

The new Arena Retrograde with smiling Disney Mickey Mouse pays tribute to the iconic Gerald Genta Disney watches from the 1980s. Presented in a 41mm stainless-steel Arena case, it features a Mickey Mouse design previously used on a Genta watch from the mid-1990s. Limited to 150 pieces only, it shows Mickey pointing to the minutes with his left arm on a 210-degree retrograde minutes sector, while the jumping hour is shown in a window at 5 o’clock.

Bearing the Gerald Genta brand only (as opposed to the dual-branded watches released after Bvlgari acquired the brand in 2000), this is the first modern iteration of a nostalgic series of watches that has become highly sought-after collectors’ items. In the words of the iconic cartoon character, “That sure is swell!”

Image: Urwerk

02 | Urwerk

Known for its whimsical time-telling devices, Urwerk adds UR-100 Electrum to its signature 100-series. Electrum is an alloy of silver and gold once coveted among Ancient Greeks, Amerindian civilisations and Ancient Egyptians. Brought back to life and appropriated by 21st-century watchmaking, it is mixed with palladium and shaped into the UR-100 watch case bearing a pleated and undulating surface. Co-founder, artist and chief designer Martin Frei was inspired by several things: “Ancient Greek theatre, the subtle pleats of an Iris van Herpen dress, a piece of raw earth hollowed out by the imprints of time, the Seigaiha motif of a traditional kimono”.

On the dial, hours are shown via the signature carousel display with the minutes shown on a curved track at the bottom of the dial. What’s unusual are the counters on the top left and right side of the dial: the left ticks through markers for the 555km that any point on the earth’s surface travels in 20 minutes (as earth rotates), while the right marks the distance the earth travels as it revolves around the sun — 35,740km — in 20 minutes.

03 | MB&F

The Orb is the latest collaboration between MB&F and clockmaker L’Epée 1839. Resembling a giant eyeball (with a dial in place of the iris and pupil), it is has four curved aluminium pieces (referred to as elytra, because they resemble beetle wing cases) that open and swivel to support the structure in its different positions. The clock can be placed on a stand while completely closed or with one, two, three or all elytra opened.

Powered by an hour-striking movement with an eight-day power reserve, the calibre is equipped with two barrels (one for the time and the other for the striking of the hours) that are wound separately. Presented in black or white lacquered aluminium, it is limited to 50 pieces each. 

Image: Ulysse Nardin

04 | Ulysse Nardin

To celebrate the 175 years that have passed since it was founded, Ulysse Nardin adds seven new Marine Torpilleur models to the line. These limited editions feature the “Chronometry since 1846” signature on the small-seconds counter, as well as a lightened minutes circle.

The top-of-the-line model is the Marine Torpilleur Tourbillon Grand Feu 42mm that boasts a glossy black in-house enamelled dial and the UN-128 Constant, a revolutionary, proprietary constant-force tourbillon equipped with the Ulysse Nardin Anchor escapement. Displayed in full view at 6 o’clock, the tourbillon’s balletic performance is complemented at 12 o’clock by the hallmark power-reserve indicator. Offered in a 42mm rose-gold case, only 175 are available.

Image: Bvlgari

05 | Bvlgari

Brilliantly combining Bvlgari’s flair for watchmaking and expertise in jewellery making is the Divina Mosaica Minute Repeater. It shines with the radiance of some 689 diamonds amounting to a glittering 11.6cts and is fitted with calibre BVL 362, an ultra-thin minute-repeater mechanism. The repeater mechanism is activated on demand via a slider at 7 o’clock, on which dangles a gem-set Caracalla fan, a motif that is echoed on the dial.

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