A couple of years ago, Hautlence integrated MELB, a family holding that also manages Moser, amongst others. Led by former Audemars-Piguet CEO, MELB helped Hautlence find its place in the watch industry. In fact, its two places: high-end manufactured timepieces, and more affordable watches based upon existing calibers but 100% reworked in the Hautlence style. The « Destination » collection unveiled at Baselworld is part of this segment. It’s a very good way to enter the world of independent watchmaking without breaking all his savings.
Hautlence Destination – You don’t know Hautlence? Now you will.
Founded in 2004, Hautlence – of which the name itself is an anagram of Neuchâtel – pays tribute to the birthplace of watchmaking. By giving fresh momentum to horology, the brand has earned the recognition of watch collectors and devotees. Hautlence has rolled back the boundaries of traditional watchmaking, drawing inspiration from the past while associating it with innovative mechanical solutions derived from other industrial fields. Its products are pervaded by a sense of architecture and design, two spheres that inspired the brand in creating new types of time display enabling it to make its mark on the history of horology.
For instance, Hautlence is now well identified for its cases, rectangular but still of a size that can be worn on most types of wrists. However, Hautlence timepieces are mostly dedicated to men. The brand has created some interesting in-house calibers but this expensive brand positioning did not bring the brand enough customers to enter its second decade peacefully. The Destination collection is here to attract a wider audience to the Hautlence world.
Hautlence Destination – What’s your Destination ?
Destination addresses cosmopolitan watch lovers by offering a complication that is a first for the brand: a dual time-zone indication. Picking up the original Hautlence characteristics (architectural, pure lines and a 3D spirit), while asserting its own more accessible style, Destination is equipped – for the first time in brand history – with a self-winding movement sourced from an external partner, and thus able to offer new functions: the hours and minutes are complemented by a large date and a 12-hour dragging dual time-zone display, revealed by a 24-hour day/night indicator. The interplay of discs and reading indications through transparency effects is an integral part of the brand spirit; to achieve this, the movement was modified in comparison with its standard execution – a process that involved altering the day/night indication and adapting the hand cylinders.
For this first line to appear under the “Signature” label, Hautlence has opted for a mechanical self-winding Soprod 935I/A10-2 movement. Housed in a titanium case, this calibre adorned with circular Côtes de Genève is protected by an opaline base dial topped by a sapphire intermediate dial on which the Arabic numerals appear to be floating weightless – a recurrent feature of Hautlence designs. The base dial is composed of several elements, including the large date bridge engraved with the brand name, as well as a central ring bearing the minutes markings. A small opening in the case-back provides a chance to view the regulating organ and the oscillating weight. The back is also engraved with the characteristics of this line: the name “Destination”, the series number, the time zones of 12 main cities (in fact, airports), along with technical specifications and the brand-specific inscriptions “Hautlence” and “Horlogerie Suisse”. The hand-sewn, rolled-edge strap is made of square-scale Louisiana alligator leather.
Four « Destination » are available, ranging from black to blue, from gold to DLC tones, from « Clous de Paris » finishing to honeycomb-motif dials. A wide and wise choice for those who want to enter the world of independent watchmaking right from 20 000 euros.