Blancpain Fifty Fathoms Bathyscaphe, a timepiece for adventurers and creative minds
This 500 piece limited edition model was inspired by a Blancpain diver’s watch from the 1970s and it featurs a gradient coloured sandy beige dial featuring a sunburst pattern. That evokes the desert, and more specifically Death Valley in the United States, where Ernest H. Brooks II, the pioneer of underwater photography and contributor to the Edition Fifty Fathoms project, made a spectacular dive in 1962. The dive is Devils Hole, an underwater chasm that plunges into the bowels of the earth at a depth of more than 120 metres before opening out into a big underwater river.
The new desert coloured Fifty Fathoms Bathyscaphe Day Date is for adventurers, enthusiasts and creative minds. In the 1970s, Blancpain broke with the traditional aesthetic codes of the Bathyscaphe models producing a series of pieces featuring a cushion shaped case, an inner rotating ring replacing the conventional outer rotating bezel, a gradient coloured grey dial as well as the day of the week and date indication. The dial of the Bathyscaphe Day Date Desert Edition adopts this style, which it combines for the first time with a subtle gradation of sandy beige, a hue that is new to the collection.
Its shades and sunburst finish endow it with remarkable clarity, while its boldly sized rectangular hour markers guarantee instant readability of the information displayed. A chapter ring punctuated with Arabic numerals marks the five minute intervals while evoking the inner rotating ring of the 1970s watch. The date and day of the week windows are located at 3 o’clock. The hands are coated with Super LumiNova. The dial of the Fifty Fathoms Bathyscaphe Day Date Desert Edition is enhanced by a unidirectional rotating bezel with a brown ceramic insert and Liquidmetal hour markers.
Although this new model has a vintage look, its mechanism is resolutely modern. Housed in a 43 mm satin brushed steel case and water resistant to 30 bar or 300 m, the movement offers all the performance attributes essential to a diver’s watch. It also features a five day power reserve, which is particularly useful in daily life. Another major asset is its balance fitted with a silicon balance spring, a guarantee of accuracy and resistance to magnetic fields. For something over 12,000 euros this is a watch for life. ■