Blancpain and Odette introduce the esteemed watchmaker’s new 2019 models in sumptuous style.
Recently named top restaurant on the Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants list, Odette at the National Gallery Singapore is all abuzz – and its 36-year-old chef patron Julien Royer is a busy man.
For over thirty years, Blancpain has been nurturing special relationships with the finest chefs in the field of gastronomy, driven by the conviction that these two realms share common values in its quest for excellence. It is momentus for French-born two Michelin star chef Julien Royer to collaborate with the esteemed Swiss Watchmaker this year.
Along with the announcement of Chef Julien as the new Friend of the Brand at Blancpain, Julien created a special gourmet menu inspired by the art, precision and refinement in haute horlogerie, to celebrate the Brand’s 2019 novelties. The result is an extraordinary culinary expression of the art of living.
Breaking the waves
The lore surrounding the Blancpain Fifty Fathoms runs deep. The watch was originally created to meet the needs of French combat swimmers, namely the Nageurs de combat, to aid in the execution of challenging underwater missions.
When first launched in 1953, the Fifty Fathoms was the only diver’s watch that met the many requirements of specialised divers, and quickly became standard issue gear for several of the world’s largest marine corp.
This year, Blancpain is revisiting the Fifty Fathoms Barakuda with a 500-piece 2019 edition which faithfully reinterprets the aesthetic codes from its original timepiece from the late 1960s.
Featuring a unique 40 mm diameter, a size reserved for Fifty Fathoms timepieces in limited series, the Barakuda retains its black dial punctuated by large red and white hour-markers and luminescent pencil-shaped hands, while the date – a key element of the original model – returns to its favourite position in a prominent window.
Another standout model for 2019 is the new version of the Fifty Fathoms Automatique model in titanium, which combines its ebony-black color with a satin-brushed titanium case. This lightweight update of the classic diver’s modern watch has enabled Blancpain to produce a 45mm large-diameter model, offering all the technical guarantees of a diving instrument without having to feel them weighing on the wrist.
The Blancpain Air Command was originally produced by Blancpain in the 1950s, and was intended for use by the US Air Force, drawing inspiration from the legendary Fifty Fathoms watch that had already been adopted by the US Navy.
Renowned as one of the most sought-after military chronographs of the late 1950s, the Blancpain Air Command model has now been given a new lease of life with a 500-piece reissue vintage style edition.
Equipped with a ratcheted “countdown” rotating bezel, an essential instrument for pilots of most modern aircraft of the era for reading fuel reserve levels, this updated model also retains “old radium” type Super-LumiNova® dial hour-markers and hands.
In order to enhance the readability of this collector’s watch, Blancpain has also improved the dial opening compared to the original model. The face of the new Air Command is protected by a sapphire box-type crystal, a distinctive characteristic of the watches from this period that also appears on the back of the watch – a first for Blancpain.
Images and additional reporting by Carol Lee. Artwork by Curatedition, all rights reserved.