Since its launch at Baselworld 2016, Chanel’s Monsieur, which was announced along with news that they had acquired a minority stake in Romain Gauthier (whose imprint is on this piece) has cemented itself as one of the brand’s most recognised timepieces. The model in Beige Gold with an opaline dial was joined by a platinum model featuring a Grand Feu enamel dial, and in 2019, by the Monsieur Black Edition (Noire), in a matte black ceramic and steel case with a matte black dial.
Now, in a riff on the Black model, and in the same ceramic and steel case, is a new Monsieur Marble Edition with, self-evidently, a glossy black marble dial.
Each of dials is made from one piece of marble cut into three pieces for each section of the dial. To maintain the consistency of the pattern of the white veins, they are cut (and set) to appear as a single unbroken piece.
The dials are, of course, familiar in layout and function, with the retrograde minutes on a 270 degree scale, the jumping hour aperture, and the distinctive ‘blocky’ font.
The 42mm sized (10.85mm thick) case remains identical to the original black ceramic Monsieur – a steel frame with external components made of ceramic. The bezel is steel with a ceramic inlay on top, and the steel inner case is secured to a ceramic outer case that also incorporates the lugs. The crown is signed with Chanel’s lion symbol in silver over black, and water resistance is 30m.
Visible through the open case back is the manually-wound in-house Caliber 1, with an integrated jumping hour and retrograde minutes. It beats at 28,800 VPH and has a power reserve of three days. The gears and screws are silver, to contrast with the use of matte black.
Marble (and if we look more broadly, stone), isn’t a new dial material, but the success of this combination of dial material and watch differs, especially when it comes to the colour of the marble/ stone. For the already good-looking Monsieur, the choice of white-veined black marble with a black case works – far more so than had they decided to choose a more uniformly black dial. It looks elegant and, because of the nature of the material, each dial will be unique to that limited edition (55 pieces) watch.
For any wrist that wishes to wear it, and not just those of the ‘monsieur’ variety, this is an attractive watch, more so than the Monsieur Black Edition, because of the marble dial. I was a fan of the original, but this new version may have possibly overtaken this preference. However, you will have to pay a premium of about USD10k for this compared to the Monsieur Black Edition – the price is USD 36,700.
[Photo credit: Chanel]