By Christopher Scapelliti
Belgium is famous for its beer, chocolate, waffles, and French fries, but it’s earning a reputation for elegant and advance watch design, thanks to the Ressence brand. The Belgian watchmaker debuted at Baselworld last year with a small line of wristwatches that engagingly reconceptualize how we view time. From the look of things, production is up and running.
Designed by Ressence founder Benoît Mintiens, the Platform watch, as it’s commonly called, consists of four models—1001, 1002, 1003, and 1004—differentiated only by their color: black, silver, gold, and dark gray, respectively.
The Platform’s indication system consists of a unique dials-within-a-dial system. The main dial plate provides indication for minutes; set within the plate are separate subdials for hour, seconds, and AM/PM indication. As the minute dial rotates, the subdials orbit within it, like moons around a central planet. Unlike conventional watch design, the Ressence approach avoids the superimposition of hand indicators in the main dial while it visually prioritizes time scales.
The patented display system comprises a revolving module driven by a modified automatic Swiss caliber. The module features 38 jewels and is housed in a 42-by-13mm case of titanium or steel, set on a ventilated strap of natural calf or buffalo hand-sewn leather, or rubber. Mintiens has said the watches will be produced in small numbers, and customization is available. Expect to pay from $12,500 to $15,000, depending on the style, and more for bespoke appointments.