It is hard to put a finger on the ubiquity of the Santos, given its original intent and the twists it underwent throughout the decades. Originally conceived as a pilot’s watch for aviator Alberto Santos-Dumont in 1904, the Santos took on a new life of its own when the pertinence of Cartier grew among the upper echelons of social classes. During the boom of luxury steel sports watches in the 1970s, the Santos was given the baton to make the Maison proud. Till today, the rounded square case, art deco Roman numerals and bezel screws of the Cartier Santos remain timeless and a benchmark of an icon.
To celebrate the pioneering spirit of Alberto Santos-Dumont and his famous aircraft, La Demoiselle, Cartier released an extremely limited Cartier SantosDumont “La Demoiselle” edition during this year’s Watches & Wonders. The 30-piece platinum timepiece mimics the original pilot’s watch, with nods towards the aviator and his legacy. Santos-Dumont’s ever-present Panama hat is captured by an ecru-coloured dial and strap with woven patterns. The customary Cartier signature hidden with the “VII” numeral has been replaced by “Santos”. Coupled with a pair of pomme hands, the Cartier Santos-Dumont exudes the same relaxed elegance it has been known for, for decades.
It may be a surprise to many that the Omega Constellation was chosen over the era-defining Speed and Sea masters. The introduction of the Constellation in 1952 predated the Speedmaster by five years as a chronometer for men and was the world’s first family of chronometers that helped establish Omega’s pursuit of chronometry excellence. Apart from precision, elegance was another hallmark of the Constellation as evident from its sophistication and refinement. It then became a symbol of style and fashion.
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