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July 19, 2012updated Feb 07, 2013

Horology: A New Take on Telling Time

By Chris Boyle

Harry Winston Opus ElevenUrwerk UR-110 TorpedoLudovic Ballouard Upside-Down WatchNew York, New York – Reported by Nate Borgelt for Elite Traveler, the private jet lifestyle magazine

While the majority of timepieces use the traditional method of keeping the hours and minutes with two hands, a few select (and daring) watchmakers have really pushed the limits of telling time, turning out innovative watches that are true horological art.

Harry Winston Opus Eleven With the introduction of the Opus Eleven this past year, Harry Winston and watchmaker Denis Giguet crafted a watch that literally deconstructs and reassembles with the passage of time. The hours, featured on four placards in the center of the prominent dial, instantly change after the passage of 60 minutes in a display of organized chaos composed of a staggering 566 pieces and 155 jewels. To the top right of the central dial are rotating disks indicating the digital minutes, and to the bottom right is a display for the large titanium balance wheel. Only 111 pieces of the magnificent watch will be produced ($254,700).

Urwerk UR-110 Torpedo Since the company debuted 15 years ago, Urwerk has been synonymous with the unconventional telling of time. The watchmaker’s unique method of displaying the hours with revolving “satellites” moving along a minute track has been used in multiple show stopping models. The most recent Urwerk, the UR-110 Torpedo, is a more discreet rendition. Available in four variations, the 110 has a display on the right side of the case, making it the perfect timepiece to pair with a suit. The 46-jewel movement, regulated by a patented fluid dynamics and turbine system, takes horology to a new level (from $125,000).

Ludovic Ballouard Upside-Down Watch Reminiscent of classic jump-hour timepieces, the Ludovic Ballouard Upside Down Watch takes a traditional method and turns it on its head. Displaying the minutes with one large hand and the seconds with a subsidiary dial, the timepiece shows the hour by the only numeral that is upright and accompanied by a small dot. As the minute hand advances to the next hour, the next independently rotating hour index turns right side up, while the previous hour index flips upside down on the titanium dial. Cased in platinum, the 51-jewel movement is composed of 228 pieces and has a power reserve of about 40 hours ($63,100).

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