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Best Of Watches & Wonders 2020: The All-Rounders
Words by Mr Chris Hall
30 September 2020
The idea of an all-round watch – a single timepiece that can serve you for work days and weekends, can be dressed up or down, and isn’t defined by a function that steers it towards a specialised purpose – is somewhat overlooked these days. It shouldn’t be: brands such as IWC SCHAFFHAUSEN and Jaeger-LeCoultre have been making strides with improved movements, longer warranties, extended power reserves and better daily reliability. That kind of important but unglamorous upgrade is all for nothing if your watch doesn’t still look the part, but all five of our picks, below, stand out for their versatile, handsome looks.
Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Control Date
With its 1950s-inspired looks (the arrowhead hour markers and tiny strips of lume in the sharply faceted hands in particular) the Master Control Date definitely skews towards the formal side of everyday wear, but the calfskin strap softens the look. It boasts an all-new movement from Jaeger-LeCoultre, with upgrades across the board yielding a higher power reserve and improved all-round efficiency and durability.
Baume & Mercier Baumatic
Housing Baume & Mercier’s first ever in-house movement, the Baumatic (we love the 1950s-style name) boasts a five-day power reserve, improved magnetic resistance and chronometer accuracy, raising the standard for an “everyday” watch. New for this year’s model is the sophisticated grey dial.
IWC SCHAFFHAUSEN Portugieser Chronograph
A chronograph isn’t always a top all-round pick because the design is usually too influenced by sporting ideals; not so with the Portugieser, whose slender dial detailing and bezel-free case construction allow it to pass muster for formal occasions as well as casual ones. Plus, it’s a bona fide modern-day icon of watch design – that has to count for something.
Panerai Luminor Blu Mare PAM01085
Yes, Panerai’s Luminor is historically a dive-watch design. But in this guise, with a polished steel case and elegant sea-blue dial, it’s really a great candidate for an everyday watch that just happens to have 300m water-resistance and a purpose-built crown guard (as much a stylistic attraction for many). Besides, not everyone’s everyday is the same.