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Jaeger-LeCoultre Duometre Quantieme Lunaire | Image: Jaeger-LeCoultre

Best Watch Releases of Watches & Wonders 2024 – Part 2

After an incredible first day that saw new releases from Rolex, Tudor, TAG Heuer and more, we had the feeling that Watches & Wonders 2024 would slowly teeter off. We were wrong. The second day of the global watch exhibition saw a plethora of incredible watches introduced, with some interesting pieces from the likes of Piaget and Jaeger-LeCoultre, a super-complicated Zenith and another rendition of the ever-popular Portugieser from IWC. We’re also going to revisit Rolex who released a watch that raised as many eyebrows as it did question marks.

Here, we’ll be following the prior day’s events, highlighting some of the most interesting, notable and impressive pieces. So, hang on and enjoy the wild ride that is Watches & Wonders 2024!

Piaget Couples Polo Date - 150th Anniversary Edition | Image: Piaget
Piaget Couples Polo Date – 150th Anniversary Edition | Image: Piaget

Piaget Couples Polo Date – 150th Anniversary Edition

  • Brand: Piaget
  • Model: Polo Date – 150th Anniversary Edition
  • Diameter: 42mm/36mm
  • Calibre: 500P1 movement
  • Movement: Manufacture self-winding mechanical movement 1110P

Piaget has marked 150 years of operation with a bang, unveiling a stunning duo of Polo Date watches limited to just 300 pieces. Bringing the heritage charm of the late 1970s together with the refined stylings of the modern era, the new Piaget Polo Date releases arrive in 42mm and 36mm sizes, which makes for a handy pair, if you can swing it.

The former is powered by the manufacture self-winding mechanical movement 1110P, while the latter takes its energy from the 500P1 movement. As with most Piaget pieces, however, it is the design that truly makes these watches sparkle.

Right from the outset, you can see what Piaget is going for, with the dials paying a direct homage to the signature gadroons of the original Polo. Delicate and intricately crafted, the watchmaker has managed to create something that feels perplexingly vintage and brand new simultaneously. Perhaps it’s the delicate set of brilliant-cut diamonds (91 in total) on the 36mm piece or maybe the rose gold-coloured hands that contrast the steel case, but there is something innately classic about this pair, and it’s not just me saying that.

As Piaget explains, these watches pay homage to the couples’ offers beloved by Yves Piaget. “The most precious model can be worn by both women and men, with this versatility being standard practice in the world today,” the brand said.

Importantly, the latest release continues Piaget’s earlier celebrations, which saw the iconic Polo 79 reintroduced in February. Considering we’re only two days into the Watches & Wonders festivities for this year, we can only imagine what glitzy and gold surprises Piaget still has yet to come. Bring it on.

Jaeger-LeCoultre Duometre Quantieme Lunaire | Image: Jaeger-LeCoultre
Jaeger-LeCoultre Duometre Quantieme Lunaire | Image: Jaeger-LeCoultre

Jaeger-LeCoultre Duometre Quantieme Lunaire

  • Brand: Jaeger-LeCoultre
  • Model: Duometre Quantieme Lunaire
  • Reference: Ref. Q604848J
  • Movement: Manually wound Jaeger-LeCoultre Calibre 381
  • Diameter: 42.5mm
  • Water-Resistance: 50m
  • Power Reserve: 50 hours

Jaeger-LeCoultre has officially made 2024 the year of the Duometre. After dropping the Duometre Chronograph Moon and Duometre Heliotourbillon Perpetual earlier this week, the grand Maison followed it up with the new Duometre Quantieme Lunaire. Featuring a stunning blue opaline dial in a 42.5mm stainless steel case, a first for the Duometre lineup, the new release exudes a level of refinement that is often reserved for Watches & Wonders.

Like its 2024 stablemates, the new Duometre Quantieme Lunaire takes inspiration from 2007’s original Duometre Chronograph, upgrading that innovative movement with the new Calibre 381. Visible through the transparent sapphire caseback, this movement again features the dual-barrel design, ensuring no power is sacrificed to operate the complication.

For me, the Duometre Quantieme Lunaire is the most visually appealing of all the new Duometre releases, and it owes much of its success to the dial and case material. The first of the lineup to be offered in steel, this model feels innately classic, drawing on a familiar, albeit far more refined, colour palette. The opaline main dial gives a sense of depth to the piece, while the lower section’s sunray-brushed finish provides a subtle gradient. I really love the way the brand has incorporated the two power reserve indicators into the sunrayed background through the use of an opaline arc. It isn’t in your face, but subtle and refined – as all good Jaeger-LeCoultre models should be.

As JLC points out, the case is constructed from 34 separate parts, with the lugs screwed rather than integrated, to enable multiple finishing techniques. As a result, this stunning timepiece employs a mixture of polished, brushed and micro-blasted surfaces, which provides a unique visual perspective depending on the angle at which you view the watch.

Laurent Ferrier Classic Moon | Image: Laurent Ferrier
Laurent Ferrier Classic Moon | Image: Laurent Ferrier

Laurent Ferrier Classic Moon

  • Brand: Laurent Ferrier
  • Model: Classic Moon
  • Reference: Ref. LCF039.R5.G3N / Ref. LCF039.AC.C1WC
  • Movement: Manual winding Calibre LF126.02
  • Diameter: 40mm
  • Power Reserve: 80 hours

The old adage suggests that a classic never dies and for Watches & Wonders 2024, Laurent Ferrier is proving precisely that. The criminally underrated watchmaker has introduced two new additions to its Classic range, both of which feature an annual calendar and moon phase complication. The Classic Moon Silver and Classic Moon Blue draw inspiration from their predecessors and yet, they arrive looking remarkably modern.

Both pieces arrive in a 40mm case, complete with the same curved lugs that Laurent Ferrier fans have come to know and love, however, there are a few sneaky additions to point out. Namely, the annual calendar moon phase that has been introduced offers a brief glimpse into the inner workings of the watch. Through the delicate peepholes on the dial, you can see the new LF126.02 calibre in action, a movement that Laurent Ferrier claims will dish out a solid 80 hours of power reserve. 

For the Silver model, Laurent Ferrier has opted for an intriguing vertical brushed finish, which I must say, contrasts beautifully with the petrol blue hemin de fer minute track that rolls around the delicate Roman numerals. On the Blue, the design language is similarly captivating. Elevated with a stainless steel case, this model feels more approachable, despite the white-lacquered white gold hour and seconds hands. 

To say that these new Classic Moon pieces look stunning would hardly be reticent, with each bearing a striking similarity to the 2010 model that took out the GPHG award for Best Men’s Watch. With established lines and a dial that remains balanced despite its many complications, the Laurent Ferrier Classic Moon bears all the hallmarks of, dare I say, an instant classic.  

IWC Schaffhausen Portugieser Automatic Ref. IW358401 (L) and Ref. IW501702 (R) | Image: IWC Schaffhausen
IWC Schaffhausen Portugieser Automatic Ref. IW358401 (L) and Ref. IW501702 (R) | Image: IWC Schaffhausen

IWC Schaffhausen Portugieser Automatic

  • Brand: IWC 
  • Model: Portugieser Automatic
  • Reference Number: Ref. IW501708, Ref. IW501707, Ref. IW501705, Ref. IW501701, Ref. IW501702, Ref. IW501704, Ref. IW358402, Ref. IW358401
  • Diameter: 40.4mm/42.4mm
  • Water Resistance: 50m
  • Calibre: IWC Manufacture calibre 82200, IWC Manufacture calibre 52011
  • Power Reserve: 60 hours/7 days

To round out IWC’s novelties for 2024, the brand unveiled eight new iterations of its Portugieser Automatic in both 40mm and 42mm diameters. A stalwart of the maison’s collection, the Portugieser Automatic has done a lot of the heavy lifting for IWC over the past few years and these pieces are likely to do the same.

The biggest update to these new Portugiser models comes on the dial. For the 2024 edition, IWC has instigated a multi-layer approach, starting first with a brass base that is given a sunburst finish before the respective colour is applied. From there, up to 15 layers of transparent lacquer are applied, fine-ground and then polished to a high gloss. Finally, the appliques are mounted individually by hand, with the complete manufacturing process taking more than 60 individual steps.

Three new models have been released as part of the exhibition, however, my pick has to be the Portugieser Chronograph (Ref. IW371626). Featuring a Horizon blue dial, complemented by a polished and brushed 18-carat white gold case and rhodium-plated hands and appliques, this model just oozes classic charm.

The new Automatics are subtle and refined, with a slimmer profile than models we’ve seen in the past. Similar to the Perpetual Calendar, IWC has redesigned the case to make the piece a little lighter and easier to wear. Of course, all models still feature sapphire crystals on the back that showcase the IWC-manufactured movements from the 52000 and 82000 calibre families, so not everything has been changed. A classic for a reason, the new Portugieser Automatic might not be the biggest release of Watches & Wonders 2024, but it might be the perfect example of staying in your lane.

Piaget Altiplano Ultimate Concept Tourbillon | Image: Piaget
Piaget Altiplano Ultimate Concept Tourbillon | Image: Piaget

Piaget Altiplano Ultimate Concept Tourbillon

  • Brand: Piaget
  • Model: Altiplano Ultimate Concept Tourbillon
  • Reference Number:
  • Diameter: 41.5mm
  • Thickness: 2mm
  • Water Resistance: 30m
  • Calibre: 970P-UC, one-minute peripheral tourbillon
  • Power Reserve: 60 hours

For Watches & Wonders 2024, Piaget has unveiled the Altiplano Ultimate Concept Tourbillon, a revised take on the slimline timepiece that Piaget that is just 2mm thick and boasts a flying tourbillon movement.

The ingenious new model reportedly took over six years to produce, with the Piaget team working extensively to define an additional power source for the tourbillon. In response, the maison redesigned the timepiece from the ground up, repurposing the case back as the movement mainplate, while the crown was integrated into the case band.

According to Piaget, more than 90 per cent of the components of the original Altiplano Ultimate Concept were redesigned, with the maison even going so far as to develop new machinery to craft the watch. At 41.5mm in diameter, the deep blue treated cobalt alloy model is eye-catching, but from the side, it’s almost transparent. The stunning tourbillon complication is visible at 10 o’clock, with the hours and minutes positioned slightly off-centre, in keeping with previous models.

The tourbillon itself is set in circular motion by a bridge encircling it, the carriage of the Altiplano Ultimate Concept Tourbillon is held in place by a ceramic ball bearing, which “drives its one-minute rotation” and delivers an impressive 40 hour power reserve.

“The Altiplano Ultimate Concept Tourbillon could be described as the sum of these technical feats. But the true feat remains the same as the Altiplano ultimate Concept’s: it is the effect that it creates,” Piaget explained.

Rolex Oyster Perpetual Cosmograph Daytona Ref. 126589RBR | Image: Rolex
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Cosmograph Daytona Ref. 126589RBR | Image: Rolex

Rolex Oyster Perpetual Cosmograph Daytona

  • Brand: Rolex
  • Model: Oyster Perpetual Cosmograph Daytona
  • Reference Number: Ref. 126589RBR
  • Diameter: 40mm
  • Water Resistance: 100m
  • Calibre: Calibre 4131
  • Power Reserve: 72 hours
  • Price: 58,800CHF

Dialling the razzle-dazzle up to 11, Rolex unveiled two new variations of the Oyster Perpetual Cosmograph Daytona, both crafted from 18-carat white gold and loaded with brilliant cut diamonds. The first model features a white mother-of-pearl dial contrasted by chronograph counters in black mother-of-pearl, while the second sees the colour combination reversed.

Inside, the Cosmograph Daytona is equipped with calibre 4131, a column wheel and vertical clutch movement that features bridges decorated with Rolex Côtes de Genève and a cut-out oscillating weight. Similar to the Oyster Perpetual GMT-Master II that was also revealed this year, the Cosmograph Daytona also incorporates the patented Chronergy escapement, boasting a power reserve of around 72 hours.

Both watches are crafted in 18-carat white gold and crowned with a bezel set with 36 brilliant-cut diamonds, to go along with the eight diamonds and three Chromalight hour markers on the dial. The new Rolex Oyster Perpetual Cosmograph Daytona is available now and priced at 58,800 CHF (roughly AUD$98,000).

TAG Heuer Carrera Chronograph Skipper | Image: TAG Heuer
TAG Heuer Carrera Chronograph Skipper | Image: TAG Heuer

TAG Heuer Carrera Chronograph Skipper

  • Brand: TAG Heuer 
  • Model: Carrera Chronograph Skipper
  • Reference Number: Ref.CBS2241.FN8023
  • Diameter: 39mm
  • Water Resistance: 100m
  • Movement: Calibre Heuer 02 (Ref. TH20-06)
  • Power Reserve: 80 hours
  • Price: 21,000 CHF

After last year’s surprise revival of the Skipper, TAG Heuer has gone back to the ocean, dropping an all-new gold variation of the sea-faring icon. This new Carrera Chronograph Skipper is again based on the maison’s classic glassbox design, however, the 39mm case has been elevated with 18K 5N rose gold. There’s a lot to unpack here.

Similar to last year’s model, the new Skipper features triangular markers at five-minute intervals around the outer curved flange. There is also a lacquered ‘regatta orange’ central seconds hand and a ‘discreet’ Skipper nameplate at the bottom of the 12-hour subdial. From a technical perspective, it doesn’t stray too far from last year’s edition, even copping the same Heuer 02 (Ref. TH20-06) Skipper calibre, which is visible through the transparent caseback, but that’s hardly a bad thing. The column wheel chronograph movement features a vertical clutch and dishes out 80 hours of power reserve, not to mention the new bi-directional rotor in the shape of TAG Heuer’s distinctive shield symbol. It must be said, however, the latest release does raise a few questions.

The Skipper has always been a strange model, highlighted by unique colour variations and a rugged strap, so the prospect of adding rose gold feels like a sideways step. It’s an odd choice, no doubt, but looking at the piece in the flesh, it somehow works. The fusion of Lagoon Green, Intrepid Teal and Regatta Orange playfully contrasts with the rose gold highlights, giving this Skipper a far more refined appeal. As for pairing a rose gold watch with a fabric strap? It won’t be to everyone’s tastes, but for me, it’s a deadset winner.

Bell & Ross BR 05 Black Ceramic
Bell & Ross BR 05 Black Ceramic | Image: Bell & Ross

Bell & Ross BR 05 Black Ceramic

  • Brand: Bell & Ross
  • Model: BR 05 Black Ceramic
  • Reference: BR05A-BL-CE/SCE
  • Movement: BR-CAL.321 
  • Diameter: 41 mm
  • Water-Resistance: 100 m
  • Power Reserve: 54 hours
  • Price: AUD$11,900

Bell & Ross’ watches tend to stick to one of a few very select formulas—the brand knows what works and rarely strays from that path—and this ceramic watch uses those guardrails to its advantage, feeling like a distillation of the BR 05 down to one of its purest forms. We have to say, we really quite like it. 

Slightly larger than your typical BR 05, Bell & Ross’ creative director and co-founder Bruno Belamich increased this watch’s dimensions to create the first BR 05 auto self-winding model to feature a 41-mm case. Crafted from ceramic, durability is the name of the game, offering more scratch resistance than steel while being simultaneously lighter and hypoallergenic. Not to mention, it’s a particularly handsome timepiece — we appreciate the use of alternating satin and polished links on the black bracelet. 

The BR 05 Black Ceramic deploys the black finish most associated with the brand’s BR 03 range, but here it has a markedly different effect. As part of the more urban-minded BR 05 range, this watch’s black finish just provides a sense of elegance and cool, rather than immediately recalling the aircraft instrument panel inspiration so central to the Bell & Ross aesthetic. 

Zenith DEFY Extreme Diver | Image: Zenith
Zenith DEFY Extreme Diver | Image: Zenith

Zenith DEFY Extreme Diver

  • Brand: Zenith
  • Model: DEFY Extreme Diver
  • Reference Number: Ref. 95.9600.3620/21.I300, Ref. 95.9601.3620/51.I301
  • Diameter: 42.5mm
  • Water Resistance: 600m
  • Movement: El Primero 3620 SC
  • Power Reserve: 60 hours
  • Price: 10,900 CHF / AUD$17,500

For Watches & Wonders this year, Zenith again took us back to the world of the DEFY, introducing two new variations of the ultra-modern DEFY Extreme Diver. On the outside, the new releases maintain the signature angular case and dodecagonal bezel, however, there are some modern additions thrown in, not the least of which being the case material.

The 2024 DEFY Extreme Diver arrives in a brutish 42.5mm titanium case, which Zenith confirms was used to reduce weight and improve salt-water corrosion. Aquatic adventure appears to be a major focus this time around, with Zenith even going so far as to equip the piece with a helium escape valve for saturation diving. The ceramic unidirectional rotating bezel, which is engraved and filled with Super LumiNova, also features grooved edges for a better grip when operating – even with gloves on.

So how low can you go? According to Zenith, the new DEFY Extreme Diver is water-resistant to a whopping 600 metres, which even as I write, feels like a typo. When questioned, the brand revealed to me that the 600-metre figure was actually a reference to the original DEFY model, with the number equivalent to 1,969 feet. Inside, the timepiece is powered by the El Primero 3620-SC automatic high-frequency manufacture calibre, which in a rare move for a dive watch, is visible through a sapphire display back.

Van Cleef & Arpels Lady Arpels Brise d’Été | Image: Van Cleef & Arpels
Van Cleef & Arpels Lady Arpels Brise d’Été | Image: Van Cleef & Arpels

Van Cleef & Arpels Lady Arpels Brise d’Été

  • Brand: Van Cleef & Arpels
  • Model: Lady Arpels Brise d’Été
  • Diameter: 38mm
  • Movement: Self-winding mechanical movement featuring an automaton module with on-demand animation

Where other maisons are inspired by music and heritage, Van Cleef & Arpels takes a far more artistic approach. Like Monet or Rousseau, the brand takes its cues from the natural world, aiming to capture the essence of the environment in its pieces. The Lady Arpels Brise d’Été does precisely that, evoking a sense of summer with the intricate use of miniature enamel-painted corollas in bloom.

Of course, the French luxury house didn’t simply stop at the aesthetic, instead opting to adorn this remarkable piece of haute horology with an on-demand animation module. When activated, white- and yellow-gold butterflies rendered in plique-à-jour enamel not only tell the time but flutter off. It is truly a sight to see.

The brand told me that the unique piece was created in vallonné enamel and set against the intensity of matte mother-of-pearl. The foreground and background work harmoniously in a delicate scene that Van Cleef & Arpels describes as a “vision of the Poetry of Time in which the hours tick by in harmony with the eternal cycle of nature”.

To see something like the Lady Arpels Brise d’Été in the flesh is like nothing else. The blend of centuries-old enamelling techniques and modern movement technology simply cannot be understated. It’s unequivocally exquisite.

Watches & Wonders 2024 FAQs

When is Watches & Wonders 2024?

Watches & Wonders is held in Geneva, Switzerland from April 9 to April 15, 2024. Over the week, more than 50 watchmakers will exhibit pieces, showcasing their latest novelties and creations.

Which Rolex watches will be discontinued in 2024?

Swiss watchmaker Rolex has confirmed that all watches from the Yacht Master II collection will be discontinued, encompassing all variations in steel, Rolesor, and full gold pieces. Additionally, the Rolex Datejust Motif dials, will also be wrapped up this year.