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  3. Best New Watches of 2012
December 18, 2012updated Dec 20, 2023


By Chris Boyle


The beauty and emotion of a mechanical watch is expressed in no better place than a poetic timepiece for the fairer sex—a fact that is once again honored by Patek Philippe in 2012 with the launch of Reference 7140R-001, a perpetual calendar for ladies.

Its white opaline dial shimmering with gold applied hour markers comes alive with the display of the day, date, month, leap year, 24-hour indication (or second time zone display) and moon phase. A warm rose gold 35.1mm case whose bezel is set with 68 diamonds (0.68 carats) makes the perfect home for ultra-thin automatic Caliber 240 Q. Fashion-conscious too, it comes with both a shiny mink gray alligator skin strap and a royal purple one. Its gold buckle is set with 27 diamonds (0.2 carats) for unexpected sparkle.

Backes & Strauss is no stranger to women’s desires. This brand, which emerged from the world’s oldest diamond trader, offers both intelligent design and exceedingly high-quality diamonds. The Victoria Blue Heart, featuring a delicate interlocking heart design, is crafted in 18K white gold and hand-set with 187 “hearts and arrows” ideal-cut diamonds, a specialty of this revered house. One blue sapphire interlocked heart symbolizes the fact that a portion of the proceeds from the sales of this model go to The United Nations Blue Heart Campaign Against Human Trafficking; the blue heart is an international symbol of solidarity with such victims. These sparkling gems frame a white mother-of-pearl dial, and the satin strap is also crowned by a heart buckle.

Having acquired standout watchmaker Laurent Besse last year, Corum introduced the first in-house piece he has created for it—and surprisingly, it is an oeuvre just for women. The Admiral’s Cup Legend 38 Mystery Moon features a perpetually revolving mother-of-pearl dial that carries a moon. Powered by automatic Caliber CO384, this uniquely feminine timepiece displays the hour and minute with a jumping dial. Housed in a 38mm stainless steel case embellished with the addition of a dodecahedral bezel set with 72 diamonds, this is the dream watch for women looking for unique, interesting mechanics.

DeLaneau continues to enchant female aficionados with unique timepieces embellished with in-house enamel. Atame–Le Cerisier–The Four Seasons, a set of four watches (one for each season) features champlevé and jewel settings in a gold Atame case that is—simply put—breathtaking.

In a unique move for this technical brand, De Bethune has launched a stunner that showcases the three-dimensionally rotating moon that is this firm’s trademark. The bejeweled orb is firmly ensconced within a deep blue starry sky that comprises the dial of the DB 25S Jewelry. The scene is set with diamonds forming the constellation of Orion as well as larger ones forming hour markers on the flange, while the case band also boasts baguettecut sapphires. Turning the watch over to spy the aesthetic mechanics through the sapphire crystal case back is when one finds the real jewels, though.

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