Luxury watch brands spent much of the last year mining company archives for aquatic rather than aviation inspiration. At the Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie in Geneva, Switzerland, brands from IWC to Cartier introduced high-performance dive watches designed to be both stylish and functional at depth. The new timepieces are moderately sized – this year as well there was a resurgence of small-faced watches at the show – and moderately flashy, the perfect complement to either a blue or wet suit.
Calibre de Cartier Diver
Cartier's first-ever diving watch was one of this year's most anticipated timepieces. Part of the masculine Calibre de Cartier collection, the ISO-certified dive watch features all the traditional Calibre traits: sword-shaped hands, Roman numerals arching across the 42mm dial, and a curved calendar window. Underwater, the unidirectional dial morphs delightfully: The calendar and most of the numerals disappear while glowing Super-LumiNova pigments highlight the dive-time indicators, hands, and the bezel's triangular marker. At 11mm thick, it's the thinnest diving watch on the market today and it can handle a depth of up to 300 meters, thanks largely to its oversize seals. The watch can come on either a rubber strap or metal bracelet and, because Cartier timepieces will always be as much about luxury as they are about practicality, is available in stainless steel, pink gold, or a two-tone option. [$8,200 with rubber strap; cartier.com]