INTRODUCING: Hermès Arceau Le Temps Voyageur
A dual-time watch that puts the “wander” in wanderlust.
It would be an understatement to say that the Hermès Arceau Le temps voyageur is an exceptional watch. But don’t take our word for it. After wowing watch lovers when it debuted at this year’s Watches and Wonders, with some declaring it the best in show, it achieved the remarkable feat of clinching both the Men’s and Ladies’ Complication Watch prizes at the recent Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève (GPHG). The French Maison clearly knows it has a winner in its hands, as it already has a new version of the watch lined up for a year-end drop.
The Arceau Le temps voyageur owes much of its success to Jean-François Mojon and his team at Chronode, who developed the 122-component “Travelling Time” module exclusively for Hermès. Some of you may recall that the man and his company were also behind the rotating indications and two moons of the Arceau l’Heure de la Lune, which won the Calendar and Astronomy Watch prize at the GPHG 2019. This time, however, the satellite sub-dial has been adapted to display a second time zone with city indication.
In true whimsical Hermès fashion, setting the local time on a dual-time watch has never been more fun. Pressing the pusher at 9 o’clock will set the wandering sub-dial in motion to its next destination along the city ring, indicated by a discreet red pointer, and its hour hand will jump to the corresponding time. Amazingly, at least to the casual observer, the satellite display appears to be hovering above the dial, seemingly unconnected to the rest of the watch. Meanwhile, the home time is shown via an aperture at 12 o’clock.
Mechanical brilliance aside, this is an Hermès timepiece through and through, replete with references to its equestrian roots. Designed in 1978 by Henri d’Origny, the man responsible for much of the Maison’s aesthetic codes, the Arceau is characterised by italicised numerals that evoke a horse’s gallop as well as a pair of horizontally asymmetrical lugs with the upper ones inspired by stirrups. Instead of depicting the globe on the watch’s dial, the brand chose to adorn it with a fantasy map created by Jérôme Colliard for the “Planisphere d’un monde équestre” silk scarf, which was inspired by a giant globe created by the French graphic designer for the 2016 Saut Hermès show jumping competition in Paris.
Initially available in a 41mm platinum and black DLC-treated titanium case with a grey dial or a 38mm steel case with a blue dial, the Arceau Le temps voyageur is powered by the self-winding H1837 movement with a 40-hour power reserve. And just in time for year-end festivities, the 38mm steel model now also comes in a glittery version. Encircled by a bezel set with 78 diamonds, its polished rhodium-plated dial plays host to the wandering sub-dial, this time in natural white mother-of-pearl.
Whether you are planning a quiet getaway or partying around the world to wind down the year, we reckon there’s no better travel companion than the Arceau Le temps voyageur, whichever version you choose.
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