Laurent Ferrier is a brand about which we’ve not written much here; in fact the sum total of posts to date has been a rather spartan one in number. This has not been the result of any deliberate decision but more a case of it being a brand that somehow, I felt that I needed more ‘hands-on’ experience with, or at a very minimum see ‘in the metal’ more than fleetingly through an authorised dealer’s window. Not having been to Baselworld, and somehow not having managed to find the connection to make an appointment to see them in Geneva in January, the opportunity simply hadn’t come up. Until SIHH 2016, when it was one of the new independent brands exhibiting at Palexpo for the first time.
For a quick introduction to Laurent Ferrier, go to this link. Now let’s jump straight into today’s watch, a new travel watch which is at a lower price point (because it’s stainless steel) of the Galet Traveller. With a vintage ‘sector dial’ chapter ring and two choices of SuperLumiNova, green (as per this post) and what is meant to be a more vintage nod, a sort of pale sandy colour, this is Laurent Ferrier’s first foray into luminous territory, its watches generally tending towards the classic dress style. This watch is definitely more on the informal/ sporty side. Even the traditional Ferrier Assegai hands are larger than normal, to accommodate the lume.
It is the same 41mm size as the gold versions and also equipped with the same Calibre 230.01 with its two time zone functionality. The disc at 9 o’clock shows home time (i.e. where the traveller came from), the central hands indicate local time (at where the traveller now is). A pair of pushers on the case side set the hour hand back/ forth at one hour intervals, and the date disc moves forward and backwards in sync with the local time. At 3 o’clock is the date window.
The dial is black nickel-coloured with vertical satin-brushing, snailed small seconds and slate-grey transfer.
The Laurent Ferrier logo is in a colour so close to that of the dial that from certain angles it’s not visible, and the seconds sub dial are markings are also similar. Whether a seconds sub dial should be prominent/ visible or not is of course purely a personal preference.
The Calibre 230.01 has Ferrier’s renowned levels of hand finishing and a 18k gold mico rotor, also something for which Ferrier is known. Côtes de Genève on the bridges, circular-graining of the main plate, sides hand chamfered.
With the luminous aspect a key part of this new model and distinguishing it from your classic Laurent Ferrier ‘look’, whether it appeals or not may come down to factors such as how you see the brand and if you can place a fairly sporty dress (especially the leather and composite material strap with contrast green stitching watch combination of the green lume version) watch within it. The one with the more faux vintage lume version and light brown barbialla calf strap will probably appeal more to the Ferrier classicists (and is the one I prefer) but the green lume one is an interesting modern look from this ‘new old’ brand. At any rate in terms of a travel watch, you really can’t get something much easier to use than this.
The Galet Traveller Boreal is priced at CHF 54,000.