November 5, 2009
by Ariel Adams
Monaco’s Horus watches represent the ultimate in rich people talking about rich watches. Pretty much that is only who they care about even marketing to. So consider me learning about these watches against their wishes almost! Maybe I am exaggerating, but brands like this have product launch parties on boats were only select people are invited. Let’s put it this way, the brand’s mascot is a falcon, and yes they have a real falcon. Only falconers needs apply to hang with the Horus watch crowd. The brand is new, and have a few interesting things. I want to share with you their Horus Ultramarinum (Marine) watches. Obviously meant to remind you of a luxury boat, the dial of the watch looks like the instrument panel of a fine ship, with the deck wood to boot.
Actually all this pomp and circumstance a round the selling and unveiling of watches is a good thing. Horus founder Andre Grossman obviously knows how to put on an impressive show, and if you look at the Horus website, you can tell that he goes after where the money is. See link to the site below. Probably exactly what I would do. Also check out the cool watch box that the Horus Ultramarinum comes in. There is obviously some eletcro machinery at work there. It looks like the top opens and closes by itself. Maybe it is like those fancy trashcans you can get at Bed Bath & Beyond that open with a mere waive of your wrist. Do you think Horus likes being compared to things you can get at Bed Bath & Beyond? I doubt it. Do they have those in Monaco? Would it have marble floors? At the very least we know that you can move the lever on the front of the watch case at it will open. Not just that, but the watch actually lifts out of the box on a pedestal for you to pick up. Get it? Fancy….
Now on to the watch. First, the Egyptian theme of the Horus brand is clear. The name, the bird, the inexplicable need for a pharaoh’s fortune to own the watch. I love Egyptiany stuff, so I am glad to see it being applied when possible. The Ultramarinum watches are custom ordered and the dial is design after the instrument panel of the world’s older steam boat (full steam ahead!) This boat is the Monaco based SS Delphine, which is coincidentally the ship on which Horus launched the Ultramarinum watch. The case of the watch is in a unique shape that reminds me of those coin operated telescope stands they have at certain public places with a view. Also like older style parking meters. Right? I like the look though as refined and adapted into a watch case. Horus is the only brand that uses compressed carbon in their cases, but this is not an element of this particular watch (that is used in their “Dualis” watch) . Instead, the Horus Ultramarinum has lots of grade 5 titanium. The watch looks gold though. So I am not sure if this is a different model or perhaps a PVD application or gold plating. The case is 48mm wide at its widest point and 54mm tall. The dial clearly is made mostly of a small plank of wood. Nicely done in fact.
Listen closely, cause now it gets weird. In addition to the flying tourbillon in the movement, it has a special complication I’ve never heard of before. You can speed up and slow down time! Creepy! The HR 1057 movement was made in collaboration with BNB Concept (you should know them). This fact makes me feel comfy that the movement is pretty well made. It has 387 parts and an 80 hour power reserve. Functions on the watch include an off-centered time, retrograde seconds, power reserve indicator, and a chadburn. Using the lever located on the case at about 10 o’clock you can adjust the chadburn to go “faster or slower,” just like you would on a steam ship. In the middle neutral position the watch tells the correct time. Move it forward and time will go faster. Move it backwards and time will go slower.
Remember that putting the lever and chadburn back in the middle position will always return the watch to the correct time. Why does the Horus Ultramarinum do this? As a novelty. To time travel, or to make it so that you can look at your watch and say “look at the time. I gotta go,” more often and it look later than it is. Trust me, this is a more useful, useless novelty than some I have seen (that means you Franck Muller Secret Hours watch). It is kind of cool as well. Oh, and The Marine watch is water resistant to 200 meters, which is actually not bad given this type of watch. Good if your luxury sailing vessel capsizes. Down with the ship, does not need to mean down with your investment.
The strap of the Horus Ultramarinum watch is all custom, and the customer can get it in any manner of colors, styles, and even with jewels (why?). The smallness of the actual watch face may prevent this timepiece from being an adept daily wear, but it is still a fine novelty for your growing uber luxury watch collection. I really want to see that mechanical watch case in action! Not sure about price, but you know what I keep saying about “if you have to ask..”