2022 will be an important year for those consumed by wanderlust. With travel restrictions all but abolished and, excepting the struggle that some airlines are having coping with reduced staffing following the pandemic, the world’s borders are mostly now open again and jet-setting can recommence. Vaccination certificates and do we/don’t we wear masks on board, the serious question now arises about a travel watch. The stalwarts are easy choices, but those horophiles with a penchant for something a little different have a new option to consider in the guise of the latest Laurent Ferrier Classic Traveller, in a very tropical and topical shade of green.
The latest Laurent Ferrier is the Série Atelier No. 3 that is dedicated to “those who are not willing to sacrifice beauty for the sake of comfort when traveling”. One of the most iconic travel watches of all time had a new green-hued iteration unveiled at Watches and Wonders this year, and the green theme seems to be something of a watch zeitgeist. The new LF Classic Traveller houses a beautiful green sunburst dial that will change in shade and texture depending on the sunlight in which you wear it. The sunburst finish sits against a soft satin finish on the outer edge, which adds another layer of interest to the dual-finish ‘magnetic green’ dial. The dial is finished with applied elongated arrows in white gold and small white gold ‘dots’ at three and nine.
The watch case is in the familiar Laurent Ferrier ‘pebble’ shape, but this time in Grade 5 titanium. Light and incredibly durable, the lightness of the metal will make the watch very comfortable to wear in whatever climate you’re traveling to. Titanium has, in my mind at least, connotations of hard-as-nails tool watches, but in this case, the watch has a polished finish that the brand intends to give the watch the same precious look of white gold, but with the robustness afforded by titanium. The entire look is pulled together by a deep-green nubuck leather strap.
Laurent Ferrier has steered away from a second hour hand for indicating home time and instead opted for an hour indicator at nine o’clock, opposite the date window. This does two things for me. Firstly, it makes it incredibly easy to use and read, avoiding any confusion about which hand is which. Secondly, and maybe more importantly, it affords the dial a graceful symmetry that is that perfect balance of form and function that is actually quite easy to get wrong. The concept is that this hour aperture is the home time that is changed by using the crown and is a ‘trailing disc’, to demonstrate the “fluid nature of passing time”. It is envisaged that the central hour is the local time, which can be quickly and efficiently changed using push-button ‘correctors’ that allow the hours to be jumped forwards or backwards with a single push.
Under the hood beats the caliber LF230.02, a self-winding movement with a micro-rotor and natural escapement, designed in collaboration with La Fabrique du Temps. As one would expect, the movement is finished to the very highest standards, including a circular-grained mainplate, hand-beveled bridges decorated with a horizontal rhodium-plated satin finish, mirror-polished openwork anchor bridge and hand-beveled rotor bridge. The Classic Traveller offers an unobstructed view of the micro-rotor with its unidirectional 18K gold oscillating weight, thanks to its sapphire crystal caseback.
Following on from the previous two ‘Série Atelier’ models, the first being a Classic Origin Green in 2020 and the second an École Annual Calendar in orange and blue, the No. 3 will be made in a very limited run of 15 pieces that will be available exclusively on the Laurent Ferrier website. Whatever time zone you’re in, you’d better be quick!
Movement: Self-winding caliber LF230.02; 80-hour power reserve
Case: 41mm; polished Grade 5 titanium; water resistant to 30m
Strap: Forest-green nubuck leather with alcantara lining and Grade 5 titanium pin buckle
Price: CHF 62,000
Availability: 15 pieces available exclusively online