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Throwback Sundays: Six Watch Recommendations for the Lunar New Year, from Our Archives

by Robin Lim on February 7, 2016

For our Chinese followers, the Lunar New Year is probably one of the festivals that we really look forward to every year. It is one of the few occasions when the entire extended family comes together to catch up, over a sumptuous meal or some savory snacks.

Well, it is also a tradition for the Chinese to purchase new clothes before the Lunar New Year, so that they will be able to celebrate the occasion with a fresh and new start. And that got us thinking: “Why shouldn’t we purchase a new watch too, to kick start the new year with a new beginning?”

Hence, for this week’s edition of Throwback Sundays, we will be featuring six timepieces that we think will be suitable for the Lunar New Year. These watches, notably, will have themes or features that are symbolic to the Chinese. They include colors such as red, or symbolic icons like the zodiac signs or animals. So, without any further ado, let us begin!

 

Swatch Sistem51

The Swatch Sistem 51, in red.

The Swatch Sistem 51, in red.

 

We start off the article with one of the most popular watches on our website: the Swatch Sistem51.

The Swatch Sistem51, for those who are not well-versed with it, is a timepiece that features a movement that is assembled entirely by machines. It is revolutionary, considering that most companies require humans to assemble or hand-finish a certain portion of the movement.

What we particularly like this piece is its price point, as well as the red plastic case. The Chinese believes that red is an auspicious color, and we think that it would be wonderful if the entire family can deck out in the red Sistem51 during the mandatory house visits. It will be cool, and it is definitely a nice way to get the kids introduced into horology as well.

 

Tudor Fastrider Chrono

 

The Tudor Fastrider Chrono, in Red.

The Tudor Fastrider Chrono, in Red.

 

Next up, we travel (in style) with the Tudor Fastrider Chrono.

For fans of Ducati Scrambler, the three dial colors that Tudor had featured were a reminiscence of the iconic motorbike. It comes in either olive green, bright yellow, or red. Naturally, we selected the red one in this article for obvious reasons. We think that is also fits the racing DNA, considering that the color is usually associated with Motorsports and speed.

The watch is fitted with an automatic Valjoux 7753 movement, in which it features the chronograph function and a date indicator. In addition, the watch is cased in stainless steel, and it is fitted with a matte black ceramic bezel. In our opinion, this is a robust timepiece, and it is one that would surely attract the attention of younger collectors who wants something that is vibrant and striking.

 

HYT H4 Alinghi

 

HYT H4 Alinghi. The movement is the same as the one used in the H1 series, but skeletonized to show more of the movement, and cased in a larger 51mm diameter case first used in the HYT Skull.

HYT H4 Alinghi. The movement is the same as the one used in the H1 series, but skeletonized to show more of the movement, and cased in a larger 51mm diameter case first used in the HYT Skull.

 

We continue the theme of red with the HYT H4 Alinghi.

The H4 Alinghi is a special collaboration between the watchmaker and the sailing team, in which the team’s logo and its famous black and red colors are featured in the timepiece. The watch is fitted with not only its unique liquid time display, but it comes with yet another ground-breaking function: a LED lighting system. Interestingly, this system is powered mechanically via a crown that winds up a mechanical dynamo system in the timepiece, without the use of any batteries. Brilliant!

Notably, the 51mm timepiece can be somewhat overwhelming for some. But if one wants something that is bold and bright this Lunar New Year, then we reckon that one should look no further than this.

 

Urwerk UR-105TA Black Orange

 

The Urwerk UR-105TA Black Orange.

The Urwerk UR-105TA Black Orange.

 

For those who do not like red, but still wishes to own something that is striking and “politically correct” this Lunar New Year, we suggest the Urwerk UR-105TA Black Orange.

In the usual Urwerk style, the watch is fitted with the revolving satellite indicator that is both conversational and unconventional. Interestingly, the watch is also fitted with a turbine regulator, in which it helps to regulate the speed of the winding rotor. The rate of winding can be adjusted at the back of the watch, with three different modes (or speed).

This particular piece is fitted with a titanium case, and it is paired tastefully with a black PVD steel bezel. Coupled with the orange accents and strap, we think that this watch is pretty colorful, but not too striking or outrageous. It is certainly an interesting touch by Urwerk, with a great balance and proportion in their play of colors.

 

Ludovic Ballouard Half Time Chinese

 

The Ludovic Ballouard Half Time, featuring numerals in Chinese.

The Ludovic Ballouard Half Time, featuring numerals in Chinese.

 

Moving away from colors, we now look at a timepiece that we think is rather interesting especially for the Chinese-speaking folks: the Ludovic Ballouard Half Time Chinese.

The Half Time is an interesting concept. It features two discs, in which it dissects the Chinese numerals into two halves. The top disc rotates in an anti-clockwise position, while the bottom disc rotates in a clockwise position. When the two discs meet at the 12 o’clock position, it will form a proper Chinese numeral in the window. In the example above, the one in Rose Gold shows that it is currently 1:31, while the one in Platinum tells us that it is approximately 2:40. On top of that, the watch is also fitted with a retrograde minute display. It is truly brilliant, and a technical masterpiece undoubtedly. The Half Time will definitely impress your Chinese friends or relatives this coming Lunar New Year.

 

L.U.Chopard XP Urushi “Year of the Monkey”

 

L.U.C XP Urushi “Year of the Monkey” with the immaculately executed "Urushi" dial.

L.U.C XP Urushi “Year of the Monkey” with the immaculately executed “Urushi” dial.

 

We round up this week’s Throwback Sundays article with the magnificent L.U.Chopard XP Urushi “Year of the Monkey”. Urushi loosely translates to lacquer painting, and it is a form of art that the Japanese takes great pride in.

For this year, Chopard had decided to commemorate the “Year of the Monkey” by introducing this timepiece in to the XP Urushi collection. The watch features an exquisite Urushi dial that depicts a monkey and eight peaches, in which it represents longevity and good fortune in Chinese customs. It is also cased with a warm rose gold case, in which we think that it contrasts nicely with the dial. Finally, it is fitted with L.U.C’s Calibre 96.17L, an ultra-thin twin barrel movement that features a 22-carat gold micro-rotor and boasts a power reserve of around 65 hours.

With its beautiful aesthetics and wonderful finishing, we think that this will be a hit with many collectors. And especially those whose Chinese zodiac signs are represented by the Monkey.

 

Afterthoughts

Well, we come to the end of yet another installment of Throwback Sundays.

Admittedly, it is pretty easy to change your current timepiece into one that will fit the Lunar New Year’s theme. You’ll just need to get yourself a red watch strap, and fit it onto one of your current timepieces. And ta-dah, there you have it! But then again, this may be the opportunity to give yourself an excuse to get a new watch… so, why not?

Anyways, we hope that you have enjoyed our article. As usual, please do share with us what are some of the watches that you usually wear during Chinese New Year, and to all our readers, Gong Xi Fa Cai!

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