Introducing The Laurent Ferrier Traveller Limited Edition For HODINKEE
A Dial Of Blue Enamel
The first thing we looked at is the dial. The existing Traveller is incredible for its elegant presentation of so much data. We wanted to reduce it even more, to bring the Traveller to its very core: ours is a watch that tells the time in two time zones, and nothing more. We first removed the seconds sub-dial at six o’clock, and then went ahead and removed the date window at three o’clock too. At nine 0’clock remains the home-time display – this display is set once and never adjusted. It shows the time in your home city on a 24 hour basis.
The outer ring of the dial is circular satin-brushed blue that slopes towards a matte white railroad minute track. At the center? That’s deep blue enamel. Protecting the enamel center dial is a white gold sector inlay. The resulting dial is one of the most beautiful things to have come from Switzerland in years, if you ask us. The deep, glossy nature of the blue enamel provides amazing contrast against the silvered blue ring and white gold, assegai-shaped hands.
A Case Of Polished Titanium
In thinking about what would make the ultimate traveler’s companion, we knew we had the functionality down. But we wanted to make the watch even more wearable than one in gold or even steel. So what is lighter and more durable than stainless steel? You guessed it – titanium. For the first time in Laurent Ferrier’s history, we have a solid titanium case.
But you’re not going to get your normal rough titanium case. Instead, the three-part case is completely polished to resemble steel or white gold, and the only way one would know this watch is titanium is by the incredible lightweight feel when you pick it up. The diameter of the Traveller is 41mm, though the wonderful architecture of the Galet case allows it to wear much smaller. This is where Laurent Ferrier really comes into its own. The watch features domed sapphire crystals on both the front and the back – the watch itself is 10mm thick, and with crystal it approaches 12mm. The enamel sector dial through domed crystal gives this watch an incredible vintage appearance, while the titanium case makes it feel thoroughly modern.
A Caliber In Anthracite
The beautiful thing about Laurent Ferrier is that the joy of ownership doesn’t end with the case and dial. In fact, an argument could be made that Laurent Ferrier’s movements are among the very finest in the world. Though, we would venture to say that most do not even know why Laurent Ferrier’s movements are as coveted as they are, beyond their clearly stunning aesthetics.
Laurent Ferrier’s watches, both the Galet Micro-Rotor and the Traveller, use something called a natural escapement, which is among the holy grails of escapement technology. Conceived by Abraham-Louis Breguet himself in the early nineteenth century, only a handful of watchmakers are capable of producing a natural escapement today. It is superior to the traditional lever escapement in many ways: it provides a dual, direct impulse directly onto the balance, it is self-starting, and it does not require lubrication at its impulse surfaces. Further, Laurent Ferrier’s caliber LF230.02 features a stunning off-centered micro-rotor in 18k gold with pawl-fitted, uni-directional winding, equipped with “silent block” shock absorption.
Laurent Ferrier has excelled as a small, independent watchmaker because of the incredible design sensibilities it retains, but also because there are few watches made today that combine traditional elegance in dial and case design with actual horological achievement. Many times you have one without the other – but with Laurent Ferrier, you have both incredible style and true watch-nerd substance. In fact, when a special contributor compared a Laurent Ferrier Micro-Rotor with a Philippe Dufour Simplicity and Credor Eichi II, he found that the LF offered the most balanced approach to both technical ability and aesthetics.
The detail in hand-finishing and depth to this movement is unrivaled in any modern self-winding caliber in the world. And what’s most impressive is that though it offers the ease of being an automatic watch, the micro-rotor allows you to still view the entirety of the incredible caliber from the caseback. And, because this is a special watch, Laurent Ferrier has applied an entirely new finish to the travel time caliber here. For this watch only, the LF230.02 caliber features a vertical satin-brushed finish in anthracite. This is done via galvanic ruthenium treatment, which plays beautifully against the titanium case.
Each watch will ship anywhere in the world for free, insured. Included will be a titanium Laurent Ferrier buckle and three special HODINKEE straps designed specifically for this piece.
Only 15 pieces will be sold, and each at a price of $60,000. They are available exclusively via The HODINKEE Shop, right here.