Yet while the heritage jeweller has a long history of making some of the world’s most magnificent sparklers, it is also celebrated for its savoir-faire in haute horology since its foray into the world of watchmaking in 1989.
Now in its 23rd year, the Ocean collection is the contemporary expression in Harry Winston’s timekeeping repertoire with a line of sporty-elegant watches that offers serious technical sophistication. We look at three of the latest novelties in the range, and how each of them pay homage to New York City, the home of Mr. Winston, and its pioneering spirit with the use of the House’s exclusive material, Zalium.
Zalium Variation Yellow and Orange
Launched in 2004, Project Z is a series in the Ocean collection that has come to be known for avant-garde designs and extraordinary complications. Project Z’s 10th timepiece, designed with the Manhattan Bridge in mind, is reincarnated as the Zalium Variations in Harry Winston’s 2021 additions to the Ocean collection. As with their predecessor, it is crafted from Zalium, a proprietary zirconium-based alloy that is not only lightweight but highly resilient.
The new models also feature a black excentered dial for the hours and minutes against a captivating openworked backdrop. Two arches with retrograde functions display the days and seconds. Similarly, the attraction of the retrograde seconds is the constant animation of its hand that traces the 120-degree track in half a minute. Sporting two colours – a cheery yellow and a vivid orange – these timepieces stand out on your wrists with a bright pop of colour.
Housed within the 42.2mm satin-brushed Zalium case is the self-winding HW3305 movement with 312 components, wound by an 18k white gold rotor. The calibre is regulated by a flat silicon balance spring to ensure long-term precision and offers a sturdy power reserve of 65 hours. Matching yellow or orange alligator leather straps with a black rubber base and a Zalium ardillon buckle completes the luxe-sporty look. Only 100 units of each Zalium Variation are available globally.
Project Z15, as the name indicates, is the 15th rendition. Like its predecessors, it is constructed with Zalium and has a significant wrist presence at 42.2mm in diameter and 10.7mm in height. A modern interpretation of regular clocks, in which minutes, hours and seconds are displayed separately, the Z15 features a partially skeletonised dial, a large central sweep hand to mark the minutes and two sub-dials: one that corresponds to the hours and the other, the seconds with a retrograde tracker that moves back and forth twice a minute. To ensure legibility, the black hour disc is made smaller compared to previous Project Z watches. Various components, such as the hour and minutes hands, the Harry Winston applique at noon, and the 12 semi-hexagonal structures that go around the case, are also treated with luminescent material.
What makes the Z15 pop is the royal blue hue, chosen for its association with the famed 45.52-carat Hope Diamond that Mr Winston acquired in 1949. The mirroring bridges that support the sub-dials, inspired by the suspension bridges in New York City in the early 20th century, also form the shape of an octagon, the signature shape of the House given the founder’s preference for emerald-cut gemstones.
Fitted with 226 components and 34 jewels, the Swiss automatic calibre HW3207 movement beats at 4Hz and boasts a 65-hour power reserve. Only 300 units of the limited edition watch are available globally.
The Harry Winston Zalium Variation Yellow and Orange as well as Project Z15 are available at Malmaison by The Hour Glass, 270 Orchard Road, +65 884 8484. Visit Harry Winston for more information about The Ocean Collection.
(All images: Harry Winston)