The big news at Chanel for 2023 is the Interstellar Capsule, showcasing cosmic-inspired motifs and futuristic designs across multiple collections, from the Première to the Code Coco. Inspired by space and the future, the new pieces have a lot to offer. Here are a couple of haute horlogerie pieces that were unveiled last month at Watches & Wonders Geneva 2023, both of which include one of fine watchmaking’s favorite mechanisms: the tourbillon.
Chanel Monsieur de Tourbillon Meteorite
The Monsier collection was first introduced in 2016 and made quite a splash at the time. Touted as Chanel’s first dedicated wristwatch for men, designed and built in-house, the collection garnered some much-deserved attention, and now, seven years later, it includes a number of variations.
This year’s debut, the limited edition Monsieur Tourbillon Meteorite, offers a whole new vibe. As part of the Interstellar Collection, it features a meteorite open-worked dial, and thanks to the distinctive material, each piece within the 55-piece series is unique.
The matte black 42mm ceramic and steel case and bezel draw attention to the lion—the symbol of the House of Chanel—that sits within the tourbillon cage at 6 o’clock. The manually wound Caliber 5.1 flying tourbillon movement, with hours, minutes and seconds, has about 72 hours of power reserve.
The watch is water resistant to 30 meters and is fitted with an exhibition caseback marked, “Limited to 55 pieces.” The black nylon strap with black calfskin trim and lining has a steel triple-folding buckle for added security.
Chanel Interstellar J12 Diamond Tourbillon
It didn’t take Chanel’s J12 long to achieve icon status among celebrities, other high-profile individuals and, well, the rest of us. It’s really no wonder. The J12 was Chanel’s first watch crafted in high-tech ceramic, and it was considered a unisex watch due to its large-ish profile and notable functions, garnering yet another “first” for the collection when it debuted in 1999. But in 2005 the J12 really came into its own when it was re-birthed as a Fine Jewelry watch. The J12 Diamond Tourbillon maintained the course, melding high fashion—and loads of star-like sparkle—with serious watchmaking.
Now in white ceramic, this 38mm limited edition timepiece has an 18-karat white gold fixed bezel set with 34 baguette-cut diamonds totaling about 3.50 carats. Eighteen-karat white gold hands set with 22 brilliant-cut diamonds traverse the ceramic open-worked dial, while the tourbillon cage is set with 26 brilliant-cut diamonds and a substantial solitaire diamond at its center.
The manually wound Caliber 5 movement, with hours, minutes and a flying tourbillon, has about 42 hours of power reserve. The white gold crown is set with a brilliant-cut diamond, while the ceramic bracelet is fitted with an 18-karat white gold triple-folding buckle. There are just 55 pieces in the edition, each water resistant to 50 meters—just right, I think, for a fashionable romp on the beach. Prices on request.