Geneva-based watchmaker ArtyA is hardly a stranger when it comes to creating full-sapphire watches, and over the years, the brand has put forward a wide variety of different models with sapphire cases in just about every color of the rainbow, including some that even change color depending on whether they are viewed in natural or artificial lighting. Among the various collections that feature this highly scratch-resistant material is the brand’s AquaSaphir series, which are diver-style sports watches that offer fully transparent sapphire exteriors and enough water resistance to accompany you in the ocean for a swim. As its latest new release for 2023, ArtyA has expanded its sapphire-cased sports watch collection with a new model that embraces the colors of summer, and the latest ArtyA AquaSaphir features a clear sapphire case with the option of a cyan blue bezel and either enamel or meteorite dials.
At a quick glance, the new ArtyA AquaSaphir is essentially a dial and color variation of the brand’s existing sapphire cased sports model. We previously reviewed a different version of this same core model here, although while that example featured an orange sapphire case, a different handset, and an aventurine dial, this latest AquaSaphir model features a clear sapphire case, and buyers have the option of either a matching clear bezel or one made from cyan blue-tinted NanoSaphir (the brand’s name for its colored sapphire). Aside from the colors of the material, the 41mm case follows the same overall design as previous models, and it features a fully sapphire construction that doesn’t require any stainless steel components, yet still offers a rather impressive 60 meters of water resistance.
Since the entire external case of the ArtyA AquaSaphir is constructed from sapphire crystal without the use of any screws or metal connecting components, the winding crown at 3 o’clock is also made from clear sapphire, and the caseback is a completely transparent window that offers an unobstructed view of the internal movement. The only downside to this full-sapphire case design is that without some type of metal components inside of the bezel assembly, it cannot rotate like a proper dive watch, despite having an appearance that would otherwise suggest that it could be used to track elapsed time.
When it comes to the dials for the new ArtyA AquaSaphir, buyers have the choice between either a hand-enameled dial or one made from a slice of the Gibeon meteorite that crashed down into what is now Namibia during ancient times. The overall design and layout of the two dials is virtually identical to what can be found on other AquaSaphir models, with applied luminous hour markers and a date window at the 3 o’clock location. With that in mind, the enamel variant features a vertical gradient pattern that fades from blue to white in order to emulate the appearance of diving through crystal waters down to the sandy sea floor, while the meteorite dial offers a more subdued appearance with its metallic gray surface and crystalline Widmanstätten patterns running throughout its structure.
Powering the ArtyA AquaSaphir is a three-handed automatic movement, which is Swiss-made and stated by the brand to be exclusive to its own watches. Running at a frequency of 28,800vph (4 Hz) and offering users a power reserve of approximately 42 hours, the movement inside the ArtyA AquaSaphir is a COSC-certified chronometer, and it features dark gray NAC finished bridges, Geneva stripes, and a skeletonized rose gold-finished rotor. Completing the ArtyA AquaSaphir is a two piece rubber strap, and based upon the press images of the watch, it appears that ArtyA offers the AquaSaphir’s strap in three different colors (white, gray, and blue) to match the summer-themed colorway of this particular model.
Due to the high production costs associated with creating precision components from sapphire, watches with sapphire cases are typically rather expensive, and it is not uncommon for some models to cost hundreds of thousands of dollars. While the ArtyA AquaSaphir isn’t exactly affordable, this full-sapphire sports watch is significantly less expensive than many other timepieces within this category, and it is accompanied by an official retail price of $33,900 USD for the version with a completely clear sapphire case, or $44,900 USD should buyers opt for the version with the cyan blue NanoSaphir bezel. Although an extra five figures for a blue bezel does seem like a bit of a steep premium, both versions of the new AquaSaphir are still less expensive than what typically comes to mind when you think of a sports watch with a full-sapphire case. Additionally, ArtyA offers a variety of different versions of this same core model with cases and bezels in different colors of sapphire, meaning that there are plenty of options for those who appreciate the concept of the AquaSaphir, but don’t especially resonate with this particular colorway. For more information on the ArtyA AquaSaphir, please visit the brand’s website.