Best Moonphase Watches from Piaget, Vacheron Constantin and More
Offering the perfect marriage of art and science, moon phase watches have long been revered – if not highly coveted – among watch enthusiasts. Here we round up some of our top picks from Patek Philippe, Vacheron Constantin, Piaget and more.
Artistic direction: LEE KUAN LENG
Limited to 100 pieces, this Patek Philippe Ref. 5057G-010 Calatrava is a special limited edition created to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the founding of Cortina Watch and its 50-year partnership with Patek Philippe in Southeast Asia. The 36.5 mm model is a new edition of the Ref. 5057R-001 which was first made for the watch retailer’s silver anniversary in 1997. Featuring the same three-row guilloché Clous de Paris bezel as its predecessor, the new white gold reference is distinguished by an elegant sunburst anthracite gray dial with a gradient black outline. , transfer-printed white Roman numerals and white gold pear-shaped hands. Powered by the caliber 240 PS IRM C LU, the display shows the date, moon phases and power reserve on two sub-dials, with a small seconds between 4 and 5 o’clock. The ultra-thin self-winding movement with a 48-hour power reserve is visible through a transparent sapphire caseback, which bears the commemorative inscription “Cortina Watch 50th Anniversary Since 1972” in white.
The Limelight Stella Haute Joaillerie watch is an astonishing creation that invites you to admire its attractive red moon phase indicator – framed by brilliant and baguette-cut diamonds – set on a white mother-of-pearl dial. The elegant lines emblematic of the Limelight Stella collection are presented in a clever combination of two shapes on this white gold reference: a 39 mm round case with an oval dial opening, accented by 353 diamonds totaling 7.9 carats. Visible via an exhibition case back, the Manufacture 584P automatic mechanical movement, whose precise moon phase display only requires adjustment every 122 years.
Winner of the Mechanical Exception prize at the Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève 2020, the Récital 26 Brainstorm Chapter Two is now presented with its emblematic 47.8 mm “writing slope” case in red gold with three dial versions in Starry Sky Aventurine, Quartz Green, or Quartz Blue, as pictured here. Featuring Bovet’s patented double-sided flying tourbillon, a second time zone with a 24-city disc, a precision moon phase displaying both hemispheres and five days of power reserve, this timepiece is a brilliant blend of craftsmanship. watchmaking, decorative arts and innovation. Filled with Super-LumiNova, the hand-engraved lunar surface at 9 o’clock rotates in sync with the lunar cycles and only requires a one-day correction every 127 years. An openwork figure-of-eight structure highlights the part of the moon visible in both hemispheres. Designed to showcase the exquisite movement, the tilted sapphire crystal allows its wearer to clearly and quickly read all the indications or admire the mechanical exception within.
To celebrate 50 years of Cortina Watch, the Swiss manufacture has created two commemorative models, including the Happy Moon Auto 36mm Golden Jubilee Edition range. Available in three dial variations of red mother-of-pearl, green aventurine and blue aventurine as pictured here, the watches all feature bezels with snow-set diamonds and are crafted in ethical rose gold, yellow gold and white gold respectively. Adorned with seven “dancing” diamonds and a subtle moon phase display, this poetic creation is made even more enchanting by the representation of the constellations of the northern sky with a small compass-style seconds hand at 6 o’clock. Sold exclusively in Cortina Watch boutiques and limited to just five pieces for each dial variation, the watch has an exhibition caseback stamped “Cortina Watch 50th Anniversary Since 1972”.
The Big Pilot’s Watch Constant-Force Tourbillon Edition “IWC Racing” is inspired by the technical world of motorsport. Limited to just 15 pieces, the imposing 46.2mm watch combines IWC’s complex constant-force tourbillon with a matte black Ceratanium case and fully blackened caliber 94800, which give the model its unique and futuristic appearance. While the constant-force tourbillon at 9 o’clock draws attention, the dial also features a remarkable dual moon phase display for the northern and southern hemispheres. The white numerals and yellow accents recall the dashboard of a racing car, while the power reserve display at 4 o’clock recalls a tachymeter. The outer ring of the ring-shaped louvered dial is inspired by the cold air intake system of a high performance engine. Even the black rubber straps incorporate a racing detail with an inlay of Alcantara – a durable synthetic microfiber with excellent grip often used for performance car seats and steering wheel covers.
The Traditionnelle Complete Calendar Openface watch sports a very sophisticated style with an avant-garde touch in white gold or, as shown here, in rose gold. Framed by a 41 mm case, the transparency of the watch brings out the details of the caliber 2460 QCL/2, enveloped in a contrasting anthracite gray tone obtained by a NAC galvanic surface treatment. Surrounded by a slate gray opaline flange on which a central hand points the date, the dial features a slate gray guilloché segment on the upper half and applied gold hour markers. The days and months are indicated on clear sapphire discs highlighted by an aperture-type display. The moon phase disc – complete with two realistic transferred representations of Earth’s satellite – is also covered in translucent sapphire. Fitted with a stop-second mechanism, the self-winding movement has a 40-hour power reserve. In addition to its triple calendar indications, the precise moon phase display requires correction every 122 years. The caseback reveals a circular-grained mainplate, bevelled bridges and the Côtes de Genève motif.
The Slim d’Hermès Skeleton Lune is a game of paradoxes with elements that are both classic and contemporary, sober but assertive. A skilful juxtaposition of materials sees the bead-blasted titanium caseband topped with a precious platinum bezel and white gold crown to create subtle effects of light and texture. Accentuated by an airy architecture and alternating matte and shiny finishes, the deep hues of the skeletonized dial express the ultra-chic character of this 39.5 mm model. An openworked double moon completes the streamlined aesthetic, while slender blue hands matching the topstitching of the alligator leather strap add an unexpected contrast. The hours, minutes and moon phases beat to the rhythm of the ultra-thin Manufacture self-winding Hermès H1953 movement, adorned with the “strewn with H” motif.
This story first appeared in the April 2022 issue of Prestige Singapore.