LVMH Watch Week 2023: Highlights from Hublot

The Swiss luxury watch brand kicks off the year with bold colours, innovative materials — and a very welcome throwback.
by Lynette Koh

Since its inaugural edition in 2020, LVMH Watch Week has become a much-anticipated event that kickstarts each year’s calendar of horological events. From Jan 10 to 12, the teams behind LVMH’s four main watchmaking brands — Bulgari, Hublot, Tag Heuer and Zenith — were in Singapore to present their first batch of novelties for the year. Each brand set up a show space within individual villas at Capella Singapore on Sentosa Island, where they met with journalists and retailers to showcase their latest offerings. Here are the most outstanding new releases from Hublot.

1. Big Bang Tourbillon Automatic in Neon Yellow SAXEM

On the morning of a day that was packed back to back with presentations during LVMH Watch Week, this journalist was not feeling entirely awake — until this timepiece woke her right up with its in-your-face hue. While it looks like the latest brightly coloured addition to Hublot’s impressive stable of coloured sapphire-crystal timepieces, the neon yellow Big Bang Tourbillon Automatic is actually made of another related material called Saxem. 

An acronym for “sapphire aluminium oxide and rare earth mineral”, Saxem is an alloy of aluminium oxide (the main component of sapphire), and certain rare earth elements. According to Hublot, the material was developed in the satellite industry. First used by Hublot in the MP-11 Emerald Green in 2019, Saxem is apparently brighter than sapphire and possesses a cubic crystalline structure that gives rise to consistent colour throughout.

2. Big Bang Unico Integrated Rainbow watches

There is no shortage of rainbow gem-set timepieces in Hublot’s famously flamboyant catalogue, with one of the most recent such releases being the Big Bang Integral Tourbillon Rainbow from 2021. The brand now picks up where that left off with this pair of vivacious timepieces with integrated bracelets. Made from Hublot’s own King Gold alloy, which is warmer than standard rose gold, the two watches comprise a 42mm chronograph (left) and a 40mm time-only model.

From case to bracelet, both timepieces are fully gem-set with stones in myriad hues. These include rubies, amethysts, blue topazes, tsavorites, and sapphires in pink, orange, blue and yellow.

3. Classic Fusion Original

In 1980, Italian entrepreneur Carlo Crocco founded the brand MDM Geneve and launched a watch he named the Hublot, or porthole in French. At that time, it was the first timepiece to match a gold case with a rubber strap, and the 36mm timepiece was so popular that its name would become that of Crocco’s brand. That watch is now known as the Classic Fusion.

Now, Hublot channels the minimalist aesthetic of that early timepiece with its new line of Classic Fusion Original watches. Available in yellow gold (our favourite), titanium or black ceramic, the watches come in three sizes — 33mm, 38mm or 42mm. Like the original model, the slim timepieces feature glossy black dials that have no markings save for the brand logo. The two larger models are self-winding while the 33mm model features a quartz movement.

4. Big Bang Unico SORAI

While the grey ceramic of the Big Bang Unico SORAI might look similar to that of the Big Bang Integral Ceramic launched in 2021, it actually has a warmer, darker tone that is inspired by the rhinoceros. Since 2019, Hublot has supported Sorai — an acronym for Save Our Rhinos Africa India. Founded by Hublot ambassador and former cricket star Kevin Pietersen, Sorai helps to protect rhinos from poachers who hunt the mammals for their horns.

Housed in a 44mm micro-blasted and polished grey ceramic case with the One-Click system that allows the user to easily switch straps, the Big Bang Unico Sorai is powered by the Unico 2 self-winding flyback chronograph movement. It is available in a limited edition of 100 pieces.

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