The Swatch Group South Africa celebrated its 10th anniversary at the team’s new head office in Sandton last month. This was a reminder of just how long I’ve been writing about watches and the wonderful association with the managers of luxury brands such as Blancpain, Breguet, Rado, Longines, and Omega, of course.
Bond movies are among the most anticipated releases and with Spectre having been screened five years ago, diehard fans will have had one of the longest waits in the history of the action franchise when No Time to Die is screened on April 8. Although James Bond’s cars and gadgetry don’t seem as futuristic these days as they might have in the ’60s, ’70s and ’80s, there is still great excitement around which vehicles and new toys 007 might receive from Q’s workshop. Among them is the watch collection.
First launched in 1993, the flagship Diver 300M has built a legacy with professional divers, as well as becoming the quintessential Bond watch. The watch reveal of the season has to be the new mission-ready Seamaster Diver 300M 007 Edition. However, you’ll have to bank your bonus for this one, secure your order, and wait it out till February.
The Seamaster is in great company, with the secret agent’s watches of choice since 1962 including the Rolex Submarine and a Breitling Top Time. Through the quartz era his wrist lit up with a Pulsar LED digital watch, a host of Seikos – including a Memory Bank Calendar, Duo Display and Professional Divers’ – and a Tag Heuer Professional Night-Dive. But the agent’s association with Omega began in 1995 with Pierce Brosnan in Golden Eye wearing a Seamaster Quartz Professional Diver 300M with a built-in laser on the bezel – all movie magic of course – which he uses to cut through the steel plate of the villain’s armoured train to escape moments before it explodes.
If Q has his way, Bond’s version will be anything but standard issue but, for everyone else, the 42mm Seamaster Diver 300M 007 Edition is crafted from grade 2 titanium and is powered by an Omega Co-Axial Master Chronometer Calibre 8806. Designed in consultation with current Bond actor Daniel Craig, the vintage military-inspired edition features an aluminium dial with a “tropical” finish – a colour that replicates the aging of some vintage watch dials – and is repeated in the bezel ring. The hands, hour and bezel markers are also a shade of tan, which evokes the aged luminescence of older watches. The “broad arrow” insignia of the British Ministry of Defence appears at 6 o’clock and reinforces its vintage military aesthetic.
This non-limited edition Seamster will cost around R137 000 on a titanium bracelet or R122,000 on a more befitting striped Nato strap.
Call Swatch Group for stockists on (011) 911-1200 or visit Omega's website.
Note: If you have any vintage or more recent Omega models in your collection bought on the secondary market, you will be pleased to learn of the new “Certificate of Authenticity”, which provides extended information about the authenticity of an Omega watch in its current condition. This differs from their “Extract from the Archives”, which provides a customer with information about when their watch was produced.