Chinese New Year is coming and just like previous years, almost a half dozen top luxury watch brands celebrate it with custom-made luxury timepieces. The Chinese New Year is the perfect time for them to unveil limited-edition pieces that reflect the fine arts of hand painting and engraving with Chinese New Year vibes on it.
Chinese New Year is based on the lunar calendar, so the dates change every year and so the astrological zodiac signs. This year is the Year of the Rat, some people believe it’s supposed to be a lucky one that brings success and new beginnings.
So, this is how some of the luxury watch brands celebrate the Chinese New Year of the Rat.
Blancpain Villeret Traditional Chinese Calendar
Blancpain’s Traditional Chinese Calendar is a watchmaking masterpiece combining the fundamental principles of the age-old lunisolar calendar stemming from Chinese tradition with the date according to the Gregorian calendar. To celebrate Chinese New Year, the manufacturer is unveiling a new limited edition of this Complication featuring the Rat, the first animal of the Chinese zodiac, which heralds a year of luck and prosperity.
Five years of research and development were required to associate within this timepiece, the main indications of the Chinese calendar as well as the date based on the Gregorian calendar. Given that the basic unit of these two time-division systems is not the same, this represents a real technical feat. This watch comes with a white Grand Feu enamel dial. The animal of the year, the Rat, appears in a window at 12 o’clock. Below is the double hour counter displayed in numbers and symbols. The ten celestial pillars and five elements are displayed at 3 o’clock, while two hands at 9 o’clock serve to read the month and date.
Custom-Made Luxury Timepieces – Piaget Altiplano
Ultra-thin watch in white gold and diamonds. Dial with Rat motif in cloisonné enamel. Black alligator-skin strap. Since 2012, Piaget has been celebrating the Chinese New Year with a limited edition Altiplano inspired by Chinese astrology. Created in cloisonné “Grand Feu” enamel by artist Anita Porchet, the dial in delicate light grey tones pays homage this year to the zodiac sign of the Rat. The delicate 38 mm diameter white gold case featured on this Swiss watch is set with 78 brilliant-cut diamonds and houses the Manufacture Piaget 430P, with the ultra-thin hand-wound calibre indicating central hours and minutes. A limited edition of 38 timepieces, this ultra-thin luxury watch presented on a black alligator-skin strap with ardillon buckle, is exclusively available in Piaget Boutiques.
Custom-Made Luxury Timepieces – Panerai Luminor Sealand Year of the Rat
Panerai celebrates the Year of the Rat with a special edition of 88 units decorated using the ancient technique of sparsello. Chinese astrological tradition depicted and enhanced by Italian craftsmanship. Panerai recalls the evocative thousand-year tradition of the Chinese Zodiac with the new Luminor Sealand – 44 mm (PAM00863), a special edition created to anticipate and accompany the Year of the Rat which will officially start on the 25th of January 2020.
For Panerai this is a true tradition within a tradition which started in 2009 with the celebration of the Year of the Ox and culminating today, in the 12th year, with the Luminor Sealand – 44 mm dedicated to the Year of the Rat. This is the 12th Panerai Luminor Sealand model and marks the end of the 12- year cycle in which each year is distinguished by a sign of the zodiac represented by an animal.
Chopard L.U.C XP Urushi Year of the Rat
Chopard honouring Asian traditions by calling on the ancestral Japanese art of Urushi to create the dial of the L.U.C XP Urushi Year of the Rat timepiece. This work of art highlights the theme of the next zodiac sign in the traditional Chinese calendar: the Rat, renowned for its intelligence and perspicacity. Each of the watches in this refined and powerfully symbolic 88-piece limited edition crafted in 18-carat rose gold is powered by an ultra-thin movement produced in the Chopard Manufacturing workshops: the L.U.C 96.17-L calibre.