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Bare Bones: The best ‘Skeleton Watches’ we saw in 2018

When it comes to the art of skeleton watches, a watchmaker carefully strips a piece down to its core mechanisms and turns its bare bones into a stand-out feature. Instead of enriching the timepiece with gold and jewels, this allows for the watch to simply embrace its raw skeleton, creating an unparalleled aesthetic. 2018 came with its own league of skeleton watches, and they deserve the spotlight. Here are Lifestyle Asia India’s favourite skeleton timepieces from this year.  

Jacob & Co Billionaire Watch  

Jacob & Co Billionaire Watch  

A spectacular $18 million skeletal masterpiece crafted by Jacob & Co. Watches was initially launched at the Baselworld 2015 with a base model. Three years later, they decided to re-launch the capsule on a limited-edition special-order basis. It is notably owned by international boxing’s ‘Welterweight’ champion, Floyd ‘Money’ Mayweather, who had 260 carats of emerald-cut diamonds crafted over an 18-carat pure gold base. The rectangular framed timepiece runs on an efficient JCAM09 calibre, which consists of 167 components and offers 72 hours of power reserve. The Billionaire watch is accompanied by a tourbillion escapement, which is constantly in motion when on the wrist. The tourbillion also compensates for errors in timekeeping due to the effects of gravity, when the watch is in certain positions on the wrist. This exclusive timepiece is available worldwide for billionaire-like indulgences.  

Hublot Spirit of Big Bang – Blue Edition 

Hublot Spirit of Big Bang Blue

Simplicity may not be Hublot’s style of watchmaking, and ‘Spirit of Big Bang – Blue Edition’ is a quintessential example of Hublot’s vision for their art of watchmaking. Flexing a micro-blasted and polished blue ceramic case, the dial consists of the chrome-faced movement mechanism. The timepiece operates on Hublot’s exclusive HUB4700 self-winding chronograph movement that works on a 50-hour power reserve. The dial also holds a date window and a chronometer. Pricing begins at Rs. 18 lakh*, the capsule consists of 4 colour options: Blue, Titanium Orange, Gold and White.  

Roger Dubuis Excalibur Spider Pirelli Single Flying Tourbillon 

Roger Dubuis Excalibur Spider Skeleton

Crafted to evoke sheer motocross bliss, Roger Dubuis unites with Italian tyre manufacturer, Pirelli, over a pure racetrack inspired timepiece. The capsule comes in a 5-colour strap palette that bolts on a black DLC-coated titanium case. The overall case does create a tyre-styled silhouette, adding to Pirelli’s influence while the straps embrace a bold tyre design. The timepiece works with a RD508SQ hand-wound calibre with power reserve indicator and state-of-the-art black Astral Skeleton. Rimmed by speedometer-like second counters complete with automobile-inspired pointers, the single flying tourbillon is stationed at 7 o’clock, while the multi-coloured power-reserve indicator offers a cool nod to racing car cockpit fuel gauges. 

Cartier Tonneau Skeleton Dual Time Zone 

Cartier Tonneau Skeleton Dual Time Zone 

Cartier always revere their traditional ways of watchmaking, even when it comes to evolving with modern technology and skill. As the second leg of their ‘Prive Tonneau collection’, the Tonneau Skeleton Dual Time Zones timepiece as the title suggest, boasts two timezones on a single dial and comes with an enriched sapphire dual crown. There’s a premium 30-piece limited variant that comes with a baguette-cut diamond-set platinum case. The timepiece will be up for bookings post the 2019 SIHH. 

Audemars Piguet Millenary 4101  

Audemars Piguet Millenary 4101  

Bolted onto an 18 Carat Pink Gold case, Audemars Piguet graces an off-centered anthracite and silver-toned dial. With a mini-dial in black for minutes and a Roman numerical off-centered dial for hours, the Swiss watchmaker has created one of 2018’s most elegant and sophisticated timepieces. Flexing a 4101 calibre, the watch operates with Bidirectional automatic winding. The timepiece is slightly oval shaped. Cop this 3-dimensional piece of watchmaking genius for US$26,500. 

All images: Courtesy Brands

Bare Bones: The best ‘Skeleton Watches’ we saw in 2018

Mikhail Gomes

Features Editor, Lifestyle Asia India & Contributor - Augustman

A watch aficionado, Mikhail also enjoys learning about fine whiskies, and one day hopes to establish his own menswear label. At Lifestyle Asia India, he writes on watches, menswear, auto and tech.


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