Throwback Sundays: Six Watch Recommendations for the Champions League Winners, from Our Archives

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Early this morning (maybe afternoon or night, depending on which side of the world you are on), Real Madrid defeated Juventus to win their 12th Champions League trophy. According to news sources, the players stand to receive a whooping huge bonus of €1.5 million (approximately S$2.34 million), for winning both the Champions League and the Spanish La Liga title this year.

Based on some of the “Spot the Watches” article that we have done, we can confidently deduce that many football players are in fact watch collectors as well. This did not come to us as a surprise, considering the massive wages that these superstars have earned during their playing career. So, for this week’s article, we play personal shoppers for the winning team, just for fun. And will be recommending six watches that perhaps these players might purchase, following the big bonus pay check that they will be receiving.

Rolex Cosmograph Daytona


The new Rolex Cosmograph Daytona, featuring a contrasting ceramic bezel.


The Cosmograph Daytona is one of the essential pieces from Rolex, and the flagship of the Sports series of watches.

Originally introduced in 1963, the Daytona wasn’t a hot-seller in its early days. They were less popular as compared to the Submariner, as well as the likes of Datejust and Day-date. It was only became famous in the late 1980s, just before Rolex decided to launch the second generation of the chronograph watch.

The latest iteration of the Daytona was launched last year in Baselworld 2016. The main highlight of the watch is perhaps the ceramic bezel, which gives it a distinct look as compared to its predecessors. The watch is powered by Rolex’s Caliber 4130, a self-winding movement that is now calibrated to an accuracy of -2/+2 seconds per day.

The recommended retail price of the Daytona is around CHF 11,800 (approximately S$16,925), although we were told that there is a rather long waiting list for this watch in most authorised dealers around the world. Definitely a wonderful piece to add into one’s collection, and we reckon it is a versatile piece that many footballers can and will probably appreciate for a long time.


Bulgari Octo Finissimo Automatique


The ultra-thin Bulgari Octo Finissimo Automatique.


It takes a certain level of skill-sets and expertise to produce an ultra-thin watch, much less a record-breaking one which features an automatic movement that is a mere 2.23mm in thickness. But Bulgari, with its Octo Finissimo collection, had amazed us again with yet another masterpiece, following the production of both the Ultra-thin Tourbillon and Minute Repeater on 2014 and 2016 respectively.

The Octo Finissimo Automatique, launched in the recent Baselworld 2017, completes the trinity of record-breaking ultra-thin movement watches. The three-hand timepiece might be one of the simplest in the collection, but it is nonetheless a horological masterpiece. The watch is fitted with Bulgari’s BVL138 movement, which features a platinum micro-rotor and boasts a power reserve of around 60 hours. The finishing is rather excellent, with a good eye to detail and finese.

We reckon the Octo Finissimo Automatique is an interesting proposition, especially with its excellent movement and its iconic case design. The 40mm sandblasted titanium watch is priced at S$17,700, and an additional S$1,400 for the titanium bracelet option. We feel that the latter is more versatile, and it will surely fit nicely in different clothing and occasions.


Hublot Big Bang Sang Bleu


The Hublot Big Bang Sang Bleu – produced in collaboration with the famed tattoo studio.


When it comes to collaborations, it can certainly go either ways. But for this particular Hublot, it seems like their latest novelty had struck a chord with many collectors and journalists alike.

The Big Bang Sang Bleu is one of the latest pieces from the Geneva-based watchmaker, which is produced in partnership with Sang Bleu. Sang Bleu, notably, is a high-profile tattoo studio, and they have previously worked with fashion houses such as Alexander McQueen and Balenciaga. The theme behind this watch is “fusion”, in which it derives inspiration from Leonardo da Vinci’s Vitruvian Man. The geometric designs, which are featured extensively on the case and the hands, embodies harmony and proportion. It also gives the watch its unique aesthetics, which makes it a tad special from the other watches in its repertoire.

Powered by Hublot’s Unico HUB1213, the self-winding timepiece features 255 components, as well as a power reserve of approximately 72 hours. The watch is priced at US$18,800 (approximately S$25,955), and it is limited to 200 pieces. Considering the popularity of Hublot amongst footballers, we reckon this unique-looking piece is going to be a big hit with them.

Patek Philippe Nautilus


The Nautilus 5711/1P 40th Anniversary Edition.


The Patek Philippe Nautilus, launched in 1976, is a luxury sports watch to compete with and beat Audemars Piguet at its own game. It had recently just celebrated its 40th birthday, and over the years, the iconic timepiece remains rather timeless and relevant despite the passage of time.

There are several iterations of the Nautilus, in which we highly recommend the new 5711/1P 40th Anniversary Edition. The timepiece, which was produced to commemorate its 40th birthday, is a tad different from the usual variant of the Nautilus. The timepiece is cased in platinum, and it is fitted with a blue dial that is set with baguette diamond indices and features some special engravings to celebrate this wonderful occasion. It is definitely hefty, but it is surprisingly not too loud or ostentatious.

Priced at S$149,300, the new 5711/1P 40th Anniversary Edition is certainly much pricier than the steel and rose gold variant. However, it is limited to a production of 700 pieces, and we reckon it is certainly a nice watch to have in any collection.


MB&F HM7 Aquapod


The MB&F HM7 Aquapod.


The HM7 Aquapod is one of the latest creations from Max Büsser, in the extraordinary Horological Machines (HM) series. Inspired by jellyfishes, the HM7 is a divers’ watch that features a flying tourbillon.

True to its value, the MB&F HM7 is an intriguing timepiece that did not fail to disappoint. The quirky-looking watch, which may look controversial to some, is instantly recognisable by its diving bezel and the giant domed sapphire crystal. We like how Max have incorporated some interesting elements to the timepiece as well, such as the articulated lugs and the “teeth-like” winding rotor.

The 53.8mm timepiece has definitely got a great wrist presence, and it is especially eye-catching with such an interesting design. It is priced at S$160,500 for the titanium cased version, and S$193,500 with GST for the red gold variant.


Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Concept Supersonnerie


The Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Concept Supersonnerie combines a chronograph, a tourbillon, and a very innovative minute repeater in the AP Royal Oak Concept case.


Saving perhaps the best for the last, we have the Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Concept Supersonnerie.

The watch is a subsidiary of the Royal Oak collection, and it is quoted that this particular line of watches combines “ultra-modern technical precision and cutting-edge micro-mechanics to create perfect harmony between case and movement”. It is certainly living up to this ethos with this timepiece.

The Royal Oak Concept Supersonnerie can be considered as the epitome of technical prowess and capabilities in the art of watchmaking. It features a tourbillion, a chronograph, and a very well-designed minute repeater mechanism in the massive AP Royal Oak Concept case. Interestingly, the sound behind the minute repeater was developed in a Sound Lab, and the transmission and amplification of sound follows the concept of a guitar. AP also put in a lot of work on the regulator, creating a silent regulator. The noise floor  which the striking tones emerge from are darker and that allows the better appreciation of the strikes. It is definitely loud and melodious, and certainly one of the best sounding minute repeaters that we have heard.

Of course, all these comes at a price – and in this case, a hefty S$780,000. However, it is certainly nothing sort of amazing, and we reckon this is perhaps one of the most well-engineered minute repeater watch that we have seen.


Concluding Thoughts


Our selections today cover a great range of watches – from the Rolex Daytona that costs around S$17,000, to the Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Concept Supersonnerie that comes with a massive price tag of approximately S$780,000

Also, one might have realised that our choices today are not dressy – perhaps the exception the Patek Philippe Nautilus and the Bulgari Octo Finissimo Automatique. This is because they are sportsmen, and they typically prefer to wear something sporty and not as dressy (as seen in some of our “Spot the Watch” articles that we have done up previously).

So, what are your thoughts on our choices? And what would you recommend? Let us know in the comments section below!


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