Today I’m returning to one of my favorite watches for “Watch A Day”. This Nivada Antarctic was created to commemorate the company’s accomplishments in exploration, part of the International Geophysical Year, 1957. It’s tiny by modern standards but has a wonderful look to it.
After yesterday’s epic 1500 word “Watch A Day” post, I decided to go for something simpler. Today I’m wearing a classic dress watch from a little-remembered brand. This Roamer Rotopower features a 44-jewel (!) movement, 14 karat gold case, and classic dress watch styling.
Today’s “Watch A Day” is one that surprised me. I bought this Enicar Sherpa Super Divette on a whim, not realizing the beautiful shape and historical importance of the watch. Now it’s one of my favorites, a vintage diver with a stylish Tropic strap!
Dive watches have been in vogue for quite a while, and off-brand vintage divers are really getting hot right now. My Enicar super-compressor has gotten more notice than almost anything else I own, and the segment just keeps getting more interest. This Certina DS-2 is a steal, with bidding starting at just €200, since it’s a nice retro diver with real history and a wearable 37mm case.
Omega is a fine watchmaker, but many fans believe that their 1960’s Constellation chronometers are the height of their work. Yet these automatic watches remain affordable. Here we have an example of a late 1960’s Omega Constellation chronometer with an automatic date movement starting at just €300 at Auctionata’s January 14 auction.
A “gold watch” is an archetypal reward for years of meritorious service to a company. But how cool would it be if your company contracted with Patek Philippe to build a special set of 20 Calatrava watches? That’s exactly what General Motors Overseas Operations did in 1954, and these watches are a unique collectible today!
The Jaeger-LeCoultre Memovox is a true classic: A novel watch that sold well when it first appeared and lasted for decades after, continuing even today. Although not the first alarm wristwatch, the Memovox came on the market in 1951 and became the first ever automatic watch with an alarm function in 1956. Jaeger-LeCoultre upped the ante with a high-beat version in the 1960’s and 1970’s, and has continued offering this useful complication in today’s Master Memovox and related models.
We’re suckers for Jaeger-LeCoultre, and the Memovox is one of their coolest models. Introduced in 1950 with the hand-winding Calibre 489, the Memovox was updated with an automatic movement and larger case option in 1956. Today, it is one of the best-loved classic Jaeger-LeCoultre models, and has been a source of inspiration for recent tribute models from the brand.
We’re suckers for Minerva movements. It’s not that they’re perfect (as well-documented in this tear-up review over at PuristS) but that they’re wonderfully handmade in a true classic way. Minerva was a little Swiss manufacture that went on about their business for 150 years before being snatched up by Richemont and made part of Montblanc. They only made a few movements in the classic era, but what they did produce ended up in some lovely watches. This all changed with a buyout in 2000 and the creation of new CAD-assisted versions of the classics, so it’s nice to see a true hand-made Minerva still out there.
There are few watches as immediately recognizable as the Hamilton Ventura. Still in production today, the “Elvis Watch” was a massive success when it was introduced in 1957 and represents the decade remarkably well.