Nine of the best blue watches of 2017
With the trend here to stay, we pick the top timepieces to achieve this year's key look
Blancpain Fifty Fathoms Bathyscaphe
Introduced in 2013, the vintage-inspired Fifty Fathoms Bathyscaphe marked the joining together of Blancpain's considerable expertise in deep-sea instruments. Launched in 1953, the Fifty Fathoms ushered in the era of the modern dive watch and more than six decades on remains just as relevant and iconic a design. The Bathyscaphe that followed towards the end of the 1950s took its inspiration from the underwater explorations of oceanographer Jacques Piccard. For 2017, the retro-influenced line combining the two has been expanded with the addition of a svelte and stylish 38mm-diameter three-hand watch drenched in a handsome dark blue, recalling the depths of the ocean. Should you wish to take it on your own aquatic adventure it comes with all the prerequisite features, including a unidirectional bezel, 100-hour power reserve and water resistance to 300 metres.
Available from Blancpain Bond Street store from September; blancpain.com
Glashutte Original PanoMaticLunar
This timepiece has looked to the night sky to inform its beautiful blue hue, the exact tone of which is painstakingly achieved through a 40-step process that takes place at the watchmaker's dial manufacture in Pforzheim, Germany. It provides an elegant backdrop to the subtle moonphase at two o'clock, which sees the silvery stars and moon emerge from the half-circle aperture, powered by the in-house calibre 90-02 movement. The carefully balanced face is completed with an off-centre display of overlapping circles that provides a clear and elegant time display, and alongside sits the big date function that is a signature of Glashutte Original's designs.
Roger Dubuis Excalibur Spider Pirelli - Double Flying Tourbillon
The watchmaker has teamed up with motoring specialists Pirelli for this impressive and technical timepiece, drawing a very literal inspiration from the brand. The straps feature rubber inlays patterned with Pirelli's tread motif and are taken from the tyres of winning cars that have competed in races. Clever design touches have also been incorporated into the watch itself, which features a skeletonised dial that showcases the double flying tourbillon to full effect, including blue highlights on the hand and the star motif that forms part of the movement. It can currently be found at Roger Dubuis's pop-up in Harrods.
Tag Heuer Carrera Heuer-01
Tag Heuer first introduced this model in 2015 to showcase its manufacture calibre 01, making it one of the most competitively priced chronographs featuring an in-house movement on the market. For its latest iteration, the case has been slimmed down slightly to 43mm and given a smart new makeover in three colours - black, cognac brown or a handsome rich navy. The latter works particularly well contrasted against the sporty red highlights that serve as a reminder of its racing heritage. These can be seen across the hands and counters on the dial, as well as on the stop/start push-button on the side of the case.
Longines Master Collection
Expand your watch repertoire with the addition of this classic and eminently wearable number from Longines. Here, the blue dial is presented in an alluring sunray pattern that brings out the depth of the colour, with the clean and sophisticated design ensuring that it remains an understated option that can be easily paired with clothing day to day. For a slightly more casual feel, sport it with a stainless-steel strap or go all out with the complementary-coloured blue alligator strap.
Breguet Marine Equation Marchante 5887
The breakthroughs that Abraham-Louis Breguet made in marine timekeeping and navigation led him to be awarded the prestigious title of chronometer-maker to the French Royal Navy in 1915, so it's only natural that the brand has looked to the seas for the inspiration behind its latest piece of haute horology. This new addition is a tour de force of watchmaking, deftly incorporating a complex equation of time, perpetual calendar and tourbillon in an elegant timepiece that is subtly finished with a number of nautical touches, from the anchor-tipped retrograde hand to the delicate wave-patterned blue dial.
Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean 'Big Blue'
Following on from last year's 'Deep Black', Omega has taken the Seamaster Planet Ocean to its logical conclusion. The case of this diver's watch has been crafted from a single block of blue ceramic, with the colour continuing across the dial and strap, punctuated with bright orange detailing, from the GMT track and rubber on the bezel to the contrast stitching. Powered by the calibre 8906, which has passed rigorous testing to achieve master chronometer status, and water resistant to 60 bar, this watch has far more to it than just good looks.
Patek Philippe Aquanaut Ref 5168G
The Aquanaut, Patek Philippe's much loved sophisticated take on a sports watch, is celebrating its 20th year, and the watchmaker has gone all-out on this anniversary version. Not only is it the largest model in the line, at a substantial 42.2mm in diameter, the chunky case is also made from pleasingly weighty white gold, a far cry from the stainless steel of the original. The most captivating element, however, is the subtle graduated blue dial, embossed with the collection's signature graphic motif.
Nomos Glashutte Ahoi Neomatik Signalblau
When handling the colour blue, most watchmakers opt for a darker and more reserved hue. But Nomos Glashutte is not most watchmakers. Here, the German brand has updated its popular Ahoi – itself an anomaly as a minimalist and distinctively non-sporty diving watch – with a bright and bold dial in what it calls 'siren blue'. The slender, 36mm-diameter timepiece also benefits from the manufacture's slim in-house automatic calibre DUW 3001, ensuring that what's on the inside is just as innovative.