Quietly but relentlessly there has been a new and real force emerging in the sleepy Saxony town of Glashütte. Famed for its grandées of watchmaking such as A. Lange & Söhne and Glashütte Original, whose superlative timepieces are celebrated and fawned over all around the world, this local industry has always spilled over into often much smaller ateliers and workshops, where much of the local magic continues to thrive healthily, despite standing somewhat in the shadows of the better known neighbours. In this town, such is the pull of the watchmaking industry, that for many families the skill has passed down from generation to generation so much so that it has almost become ingrained into their dna.
Nomos might not be fairly described as being an obscure brand, but it would be accurate to say that despite being the biggest producer of mechanical watches in Germany, it is a name not particularly familiar with the masses worldwide, however for the growing numbers who are aware, a Nomos watch is distinguishable from twenty paces thanks to designs which are the embodiment of Bauhaus minimalism, and a style which is uniquely Nomos.
Due for release in October, the new Nomos Zurich Worldtimer “True Blue” takes the in-house automatic self winding Caliber ξ (possibly better known as the Xi, and in the press release here, referred to as Calibre DUW 5201), which until now had only been available in the Tangente GMT, and houses it beneath a new dial – in true blue of course – featuring, for the first time in a Nomos, a ring marked out with twenty-four international cities which rotates in a recessed channel around the centre of the dial in classic worldtimer format.
A press of the pusher located at the 2 advances the ring by one of the twenty-four increments, until the desired timezone is aligned with the downward pointing arrow head at the 12, whilst at the same time the hour hand jumps ahead one hour per push, thus displaying the local time in the nominated city.
A second smaller 24-hour disc rotates, partially hidden beneath the centre of the dial, emerging to overlap the cities ring where, when juxtaposed between the red arrow at the 3 and a little red ‘haus’ motif just across, displays the time back home at a glance. What the Nomos Zurich Worldtimer offers the international traveller really is a beautifully simple solution.
The circular snailed small seconds subdial at the 6 o’clock dominates the lower half of the ‘face’ and contrasts with the galvanised blue dial and the rhodium plated hands. The polished stainless steel case measures 39.9mm across through the sapphire caseback, the gorgeous hand finished components of the movement, with perlage, spiral brushing and of course Glashütte ribbing, are testament to the craftsmanship of the Nomos watchmakers.
Long lugs protrude from the case, creating a gap between the shell cordovan strap and the body of the watch which makes it seem larger than its almost 40mm. The Nomos Zurich Worldtimer is a superbly executed piece with meticulous attention to detail throughout, and extends an already comprehensive line-up of models, underlining the well organised company’s steadily rising star. Price: $5,880.