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A Guide To The Best Year Of The Tiger Watches, Part @: Swatch Group

The Chinese New Year rings in officially on February 1, 2022, and a host of brands are offering creative visions of the seductive and alluring tiger for the wrist. According to Chinese zodiac references, the tiger is the beautiful, powerful and confident and people born in the Year of the Tiger are similarly empowered. In this part 2 of the Guide to the 2022 Year of the Tiger watches (part 1 ran last week), we take a closer look at the beautiful interpretations of our feline friends as presented from a variety of the Swatch Group brands. The timepieces run the gamut from high complications from Blancpain to whimsical artistic renditions from Harry Winston, simple and functional from TAG Heuer and fashion-forward from Swatch. This means they also run the gamut in pricing to appeal to almost any wallet. 

Blancpain

More subdued than most of the Year of the Tiger watches, Blancpain’s Traditional Chinese Calendar watch is more about showcasing its incredibly complex movement that was five years in the research and development stages.  It combines the Chinese calendar with the Gregorian calendar and moonphase indications. In addition to the complex solar and lunar measurements, this watch offers the Chinese calendar’s double-hours display, as well as day, month, leap years and – the key to the Chinese new year – the signs of the Chinese zodiac. The magnificent 45mm platinum case boasts a Grande Feu enamel dial with Arabic, Roman and Chinese numerals and symbols on it. The transparent case back showcases the oscillating weight engraved with the zodiac sign of the tiger. Just 50 individually numbered  pieces will be made, each retailing for $87,800. 

Harry Winston

A regular contributor to the Chinese zodiac, Harry Winston once again turns to its Premier case for the Chinese New Year 36mm automatic Year of the Tiger watch. However, this year, the brand uses a truly whimsical depiction of the feline that represents tiger cubs more so than the grown and ferocious tiger. Two tiger cubs seem to play against the backdrop of the bold red mother-of-pearl dial. Each cub faces the wearer and is crafted in 18-karat gold with red stripes. The dial of the watch (with hours and minutes) is offset at 12:00 in a ring surrounded by diamonds, so the cubs are free to play. Each one boasts the addition if floral accents in the hues of either pink or purple beaded mother of pearl.  The watch is set with a diamond bezel and lugs and finished with a red alligator strap. The 36mm Premier Chinese New Year Automatic 36mm watch is crafted in 18-karat rose gold and powered by the HW2014 automatic winding movement with 65 hours of power reserve.  

 TAG Heuer

This year, TAG Heuer joins in the Chinese Zodiac spirit and release the limited edition Carrera Year of the Tiger watch.  Crafted in stainless steel, the 41 mm Carrera case encircles a dial made in two-tone blues that mimic the tiger’s stripes. The watch offers day and date indication as well as hours, minutes and seconds (with green luminous hour and minute hands that glow in the dark) and uses 18-karat gold-plated  stick markers to keep the dial clean so that only the tiger’s stripes make a statement. The lighter blue stripes are created with a brushed metal that is coated with blue PVD treatment and the darker stripes are painted textured metal. The back of the watch is even more alluring. Thanks to a transparent sapphire case back, the automatic movement is visible, and a beautiful blue/black striped tiger paws his way across the sapphire crystal caseback. The watch is created in a limited edition of 300  pieces and retails for $3,750. 

Swatch 

Even Swatch Group’s signature Swatch brand gets in on the zodiac action. Its newest Tiger Power 2022 watch features a gold and red color combination indicative of the colors of the Chinese new Year. The dial boasts a tiger’s head in graphic rendition for a fun and anytime-of-the-year appeal. The black strap is created using bio-sourced material and the case and bezel are made of Bioceramic.  The “Year of the Tiger” is written on the bezel and the same words – in Chinese —- are printed on the inner strap. $160.

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