Whether you are exploring ocean depths or lazing by the pool, make the most of the moment with these high-octane sports watches
Finally, some sun. The emergence from a longer-than-expected wet season demands modifications to our get-ups. This hot season, we turn our attention to stylish and robust sports watches. But not just any plus-sized, inelegant toughies—chameleonic boardroom-to-beach versatility, sophistication from the inside-out, and forthright statement-making allure are vital virtues. These athletically inspired specimens may brandish outstanding performance specifications and ace the harshest of endurance tests. But lest we forget, they are also conceived by renowned paragons of watchmaking refinement.
A. Lange & Söhne
A divisive watch when it was introduced in 2020, the Odysseus is now an A. Lange & Söhne bestseller. Expect to be on the waitlist for this indelible timepiece, instantly recognised by its large day and twin-date windows that flank the dial, and muscular yet stately features that make it a Lange thoroughbred.
The Odysseus Titanium with textured ice-blue dial is the most recent addition to the collection. The watch features an in-house automatic movement that was specially created for this line, which currently comprises models in steel and white gold. This 250-piece edition ranks as our favourite. Wrapping the wrist in its light yet hardy titanium case and bracelet—incidentally, this is Lange’s first titanium model—this beauty wins us over with its wholly original take on the modern luxury sports watch.
Fifty Fathoms Tech Gombessa
Blancpain, which birthed the world’s bona fide modern dive watch in 1953 with the Fifty Fathoms, continues to shake things up in this category of watches. While the original Fifty Fathoms defined the blueprint for underwater tool watches with standard-setting specifications for water resistance, hardiness, and legibility, the latest Fifty Fathoms Tech Gombessa pushes the envelope on all these features.
Clad in titanium and water resistant to 300m, the watch is equipped with a new feature—comprising an additional hand that makes one full turn every three hours—that allows it to measure long dives of up to three hours. For context, regular dive watches allow for maximum measurement of one-hour durations. The watch is field-tested by no less than Laurent Ballesta. A world renowned marine conservationist, Ballesta and his team wore prototypes of the watch on the Blancpain-sponsored Gombessa V and Gombessa VI missions. During those missions, the team spent an entire month underwater on both occasions in a tiny hyperbaric chamber, from which they emerged daily to spend long hours in the ocean as they conducted research.
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The hugely popular ‘panda’ dial design guarantees instant throwback mojo for modern sports watches. Vacheron Constantin’s new Overseas Chronograph is among its latest beneficiaries. Here, the distinctive black-on-white chronograph counters do a wonderful job of imbuing the watch with a motorsports-fuelled vibe.
Ticking all the boxes of a top-of-the-line sports chronograph, this stainless steel model is elegantly styled and powerfully built. A Geneva Hallmark-certified creation that promises horological excellence from construction to finishing, the watch runs on a richly decorated in-house chronograph movement featuring a gold oscillating weight.
Royal Oak Offshore Black Ceramic
Fans of Audemars Piguet must be wondering why it has taken the Swiss watchmaker this long to introduce an all-black ceramic version of one of its most desired models. Still, better late than never. The Royal Oak Offshore, nicknamed The Beast for its imposing dimensions when it launched in 1993, finally gets clad in the gleaming black armour.
This automatic chronograph’s 42mm case and multi-link bracelet are forged in high-tech, scratch-resistant ceramic, decorated in a combination of brushed and polished finishing that’s similar to steel models in the collection. The contrast finishing accentuates the Royal Oak Offshore’s distinctive silhouette, which in turn frames a matte black dial that adds to the monochromatic allure. On the inside, the Royal Oak Offshore Black Ceramic runs on the Calibre 4404, a newly developed automatic flyback chronograph movement with column-wheel control and 50-hour power reserve.