In a time where it’s advisable to play it safe and predict the unpredictable, De Bethune stretched out the challenge of the latter by developing a travel watch in preparation for the return of boundless, international travel. When life resumes, the new DB25GMT Starry Varius will be more than ready to take its place on the wrists of the most discerning globetrotters.
And even though most of us can only keep in touch with our faraway loved ones through video calls and conferences, this new timepiece allows us to stay connected through time by indicating the timezone in which our loved ones live.
“What on earth was I thinking of, in working on a new GMT travel watch while all the countries of the world were entering lockdown?” commented Denis Flageollet, Founder and Master Watchmaker of De Bethune. “I am pleased that it is now finished and that all the nomads of the planet can finally resume their journey, doubtless with a different view of our world.”
Slim but evolved
Joining the ranks of other titanium watches that are all the rage right now, the DB25GMT Starry Varius comes housed in a 42mm polished Grade 5 titanium case. It’s equipped with perfectly integrated open-worked lugs and a screw-down sapphire caseback providing a glimpse of the watchmaker’s 29th in-house calibre, the hand-wound Calibre DB2507 which features a 5-day power reserve. Even with such a complicated movement, the watch features a slim silhouette and wears elegantly on the wrist.
De Bethune’s technical signature
On the dial, a starry sky is accompanied by its Milky Way. A miniature night sky is dotted with a multitude of small white gold pins delicately, and individually driven into the blued titanium dial. As for the Milky Way vision, it’s handcrafted using a combination of micro-laser strokes and 24-carat gold leaf.
Starting from the centre, the dial indicates the date on the first disc with the help of its jumping date hand, which can be adjusted via a corrector at 6 o’clock. The hours of the first 24-hour time zone – home or reference time – are marked by the microsphere, as it appears to be floating weightless in its corridor. The microsphere indicates day and night with its two halves – one blue and one pink – which gradually turns at 6am and 6pm, imitating the rising and setting of the sun. The function can be set either clockwise or anti-clockwise via the crown.
Local time is indicated by the blued hands whose curvature follows the relief of the dial. The minute hand remain coordinated with the reference time, while the hours hand indicates the local time courtesy of the second time zone. The crown can also be used to set local time, in both directions.
The reverse side of the movement – which is visible through the sapphire caseback – reveals the latest titanium balance with white gold inlays. It has the ability to neutralise the effects of temperature variations thanks to its interaction with the balance spring featuring the “De Bethune” flat terminal curve, its aerodynamics having been worked on so as to ensure minimal air resistance. To increase the power of the calibre, the escape-wheel is made of lightweight silicon.
Photos: De Bethune