China is now the world’s largest luxury watch market, having overtaken the US in 2012, according to World Watch Report by Digital luxury group. Another incredible statistic: approximately 50% of Swiss luxury watches in the world are sold in just these 3 (mostly) Chinese markets: HK, Singapore and Mainland
China, with Hong Kong alone representing 30% of global Swiss luxury watch sales according to new statistics released by Federation of the Swiss Watch Industry.
China has now overtaken the USA as the world's biggest consumer market for luxury products with an insatiable appetite for prestigious and expensive brands. The consumers in Hong
Kong and the Chinese mainland spent more than 5.72 billion Swiss francs ($5.907 billion) on Swiss watches in 2011.
Consequently, it is no surprise that the top watch luxury brands are falling over themselves to make niche watches to appeal to the luxury Chinese market. In recent times, there has been an increasing number of luxury watches which are inspired by the Chinese Zodiac symbols such as the Snake and the Dragon, which are targeted at wealthy Chinese buyers, but are appreciated by watch collections around the world.
We bring you our exclusive list of Top luxury Chinese
The Chinese Timekeeper launches the CTK12, commemorating the Year of the Dragon. The watch’s dial takes inspiration from ancient Chinese Pagodas and is made of 24K Yellow Gold depicting a Chinese Dragon in full power. Although the dial has a layer of 24K Gold, the real show stealer is the Dragon which is applied and just not painted or embossed lending an awe-inspiring look to the hand-crafted dial. The dial has two characteristic features i.e., the brand signature at 12 o’clock and the ‘十’ sign at 10 o’ clock which depicts the number 10. The CTK12 is water-resistant up to 50 meters and comes with 2 straps; the first one is the brand’s signature strap – double black calf leather strap with black stitching and the second being a black Alligator. So, if you are a believer of the Chinese Dragon bringing good luck, strength and power then let this watch adorn your wrist.
Price – USD 8,091.
Hublot Geneve China Dragon No. 01
Hublot Geneve China Dragon No. 01 is a limited edition made in 1990s. According to Chinese mythology Dragons are symbolic of fertility, happiness, procreation, immorality and activity. Also regarded as good luck charms and are believed to ward off evil spirits. The Hublot Geneve China Dragon No. 01 has a dragon engraved by Kees Engelbarts on its dial made of 18K yellow-gold against a red background. The use of contrasting colors makes its appearance classy and more legible. It is one of the important collector’s wristwatches from Hublot because of its rarity and unusual make. It has a 36mm diameter and is made up of 21 jewels. It comes with a fitted box and certificate.
Price: USD 10,664.
Chopard L.U.C XP Urushi Snake
XP Urushi Snake Watch is an extraordinary timepiece that brags an excellent and complex dial made by utilizing a conventional Japanese decorative method as far back as anyone can remember. The dial features the secured lacquering craft of Urushi, fully hand-painted flowering bush which is additionally an image of good fortunes. To mark the year of the snake, a resplendent snake is looped around the bush. Interestingly, the coating is inferred from the sap of the Urushi tree, otherwise known as "Japanese varnish tree" or "lacquer tree". The mechanical specialty of the Chopard L.U.C XP Urushi Snake is showcased by the L.U.C Caliber 96.17-L self-winding movement.
In spite fact that the watch itself is ultra-thin – just 6.8 mm, its case houses two barrels, guaranteeing full 65 hours of force save. The component is actually hand decorated by the House artisans as per the standards of customary fine watchmaking and fitted with an off-centered micro-rotor, which might be seen through the transparent-sapphire case-back. The 29 gems component wavers at the quick recurrence of 28,800 beats for every hour (4 Hz). Chopard L.U.C XP Urushi Snake Watch is housed in an 18 carats rose gold case with the diameter of 39.5 mm.
Price: USD 24,169.
Nardin Classico Enamel Champlevé Dragon
The Swiss watchmaker honored the lost art of enamelling with the new Classico Enamel Champlevé Dragon, but this time, it’s through the legend of the Dragon, a symbol of success and prosperity. Legends claims that those who keep the mythical creature close will be granted guidance and protection. The beauty of the dragon dial is the result of Ulysse Nardin's devotion to the lost art of enameling and a refined decorative technique that requires the dedication of a master craftsman. It is only limited to 88 pieces of the Classico Dragon 40mm in 18-carat white gold and in 18-carat rose gold.
Each watch is accented by a hand-sewn alligator leather strap with a white - or red - gold tang buckle, empowering its wearer with an image that is both bold and sophisticated. A sapphire crystal exhibition window is featured in the caseback, through which the self-winding UN-815 movement can be viewed. The timepiece has a power reserve of approximately 42 hours, and the chronometer is
Price: USD 40,900.
Vulcain Cloisonne - The Dragon
With a meandering dragon on its dial, the Vulcain Cloisonne Cricket Aviator GMT honors the Year of the Dragon. This watch is also called the Emperor’s watch because it has the five-clawed dragon on its dial which is believed to be the prerogative of the Emperor and his family. The art of enameling is used for the undulating dragon in which Vulcain Cloisonne confirms its expertise. The binding of the enamel onto the dial involves a risky and unpredictable process delivering an aura of uniqueness to the watch. Apart from hour, minute and seconds function, the Dragon also displays world time on a 24-hour scale and also has a mechanical alarm. The diameter of the case is 42mm and is made up of 18K rose gold and provides water resistance to 100 meters. Get the royal feeling with this Emperor’s Watch.
Price - USD 49,260.
Thomas Prescher Tempusvivendi Dragon
Thomas Prescher Tempusvivendi
Dragon watch is provided with an 18k white gold case that includes a
43 mm diameter with red dial and automatic mechanical movement. It also has double retrograde indication of time incessantly running display of minutes and jumping display of hours with a special device to shift between the figure displaying the time and being in an exceedingly non-temporal resting position. The strap used is hand cut and stitched black alligator strap and has a beautiful 18k white gold buckle. This watch includes a power reserve of up to 40 hours and is water resistant up to 100 meters.
Price: USD 57,500.
Bvlgari Serpenti Snake Watch
The serpenti watch collection from Bulgari is a contemporary reinterpretation of one of the brand’s most famous icons. The figure of the reptile, a symbol of eternally youth and immortality in the mythological bestiary, is an integral and long established part of the aesthetic universe of the Italian jeweller and consistently appears in the most striking Bulgari creations. This serpenti quartz watch comes in 26 mm 18 carat pink gold case set with round brilliant cut diamonds. It features a black sapphire dial and a black enamel and diamond two twirl 18 carat pink gold bracelet.
Price - USD 75,000.
Dragon & Phoenix Altiplano Watches
To pay a tribute to the Chinese year of the Dragon, Piaget created a new special watch collection by its 40 professional masters, which symbolizes the brand yet again reaching the peak of perfection on the way of pursuing excellence. Piaget’s Dragon and Phoenix watch collection represent celestial harmony. The Dragon and the Phoenix together form a mythical,imperial couple. The Dragon and Phoenix representing the Emperor and Empress as well as the nobility and authority of the Imperial Court, unify the irrespective spheres of symbolic influence. This Altiplano variation comes in a 38 mm case for both Dragon and Phoenix, again in pink or white gold with a diamond bezel. This version's impressive enameling is hand completed by Anita Porchet, famed for her enamel work with luxury Swiss watches. Each watch for both men and women are limited to 38 pieces.
Price: USD 76,960.
Piaget Dragon and Phoenix Emperador
Dragon and Phoenix Emperador automatic is a limited edition of just eight pieces. The traditional dragon, which is a symbol of power, strength, and good luck in Chinese culture, is formed in a shape of figure "8″: an extremely lucky number for the Chinese people. Emperador is powered by tried and true Piaget
534P automatic movement along with Breathtaking 18K pink gold case set with 163 brilliant-cut diamonds. The Dial is customized with a hand engraved dragon design set with 257 brilliant-cut diamonds with 24 jewels. Sapphire crystal case-back with glided applied dragon ideogram adds charm. The caging diameter is 22.4 mmx 64 mm with 21,600 vph frequency. The weight of the tourbillion carriage is
0.2g with 40-hour power reserve. It also has 18K pink gold pin buckle on a grey alligator leather strap.
Price: USD 90,000.
Grieb & Benzinger Black Dragon
Grieb & Benzinger Black Dragon is a combination of craftsmanship and Chinese mythology and is created to honor the Year of the Dragon. The Dragon is a very important creature according to the Chinese folklore and the Chinese consider themselves to be the descendants of it. They also believe that children born in the Year of the Dragon will possess the characteristics, like benevolence, power and intelligence, of the dragon. The watch is skeletonized and is engraved by hand. Grieb & Benzinger have released only eight pieces of the Black Dragon considering ‘8’ to be a lucky number and has a hand-made guilloche. The mighty creature is captured inside two different cases, one made of 18K pink-gold and the other has 77 diamonds studded on its circumference. The watch has a hand-made black Alligator strap with a golden buckle and has a diameter of 43 mm.
Price – USD 100,000.
Chopard L.U.C XP Urushi Blue Horn Dragon
The unique luxury watch collection XP Urushi is presented by well known swiss watchmaker Chopard . The unique collection is developed under the guidance of Kiichiro Masumura, a Japanese artist who is known as "Living National Treasure" by Japan.The Blue Horn Dragon just as the name resembles has a shining blue horn in the golden dial. The ultra-thin L.U.C
XP Urushi Blue Horn Dragon comes in a thickness of 6.8 mm case and a diameter of 39.5 mm which perfectly reveals a majestic style. The Movement of the watches L.U.C 96HM automatic with 65-hour power reserve. The strap is brown or black alligator leather strap with brown alligator lining. The Dial is made up of Urushi Painting with 18K rose gold or 18K white gold Dauphine hands. The watch is water resistant up to 30 meters.
Price: USD 108,163.
Piaget Dragon & Phoenix Altiplano "Double Jeu”
& Phoenix Altiplano "Double Jeu” 43 mm watch is the next gem in the Altiplano series. Its originality lies in two cases. The 18K white gold lower case is paved with 381 brilliant-cut diamonds, totaling to 3.1 carats, and 60 baguette-cut diamonds with the overall weight equal to 4.6 carats. The lower case, also in 18K white gold, portrays an image of phoenix, studded with 355 brilliant-cut diamonds, equating to 0.7 carats. The case-back is engraved with a Chinese phoenix ideogram. It comprises a circular-grained main plate, bevelled bridges,engraved coat-of-arms as well as blued screws. The caliber operates at a frequency of 21,600 vibrations per hour with a power reserve of 60 hours. This exclusive edition is limited to 8 pieces. The new Piaget watch is mounted on a white alligator leather strap. It is finalized by an 18K white gold folding clasp, set with 26 brilliant-cut diamonds.
Price: USD 386,361.
Jean Dunand Tourbillon Confucius
The Jean Dunand
Tourbillon Confucius is a watch paying tribute to miniature artistry and Confucius
– the famous Chinese philosopher, politician and teacher of the Spring and Autumn Period of Chinese history, known for his teachings of benevolence, charity, humanity
and reciprocity. He embraced the acclaimed principle
"Do not do to others what you do not want done to yourself”. The watch
portrays a hand painted miniature line portrait of Confucius on the onyx
dial, painted by Andre Martinez. Miniature painting is an age old form
of art dating back its existence to the 14th Century. On the side of
this watch there is a special power reserve indicator. The hands of the watch
are elegant and classy, resembling sky-scrappers. The
watch features a one-minute flying tourbillon that circles the dial once
per hour. The diameter of the watch is 45 mm and is water resistant to 30
meters in water. The Chinese philosopher is encased in an 18K pink-gold case
and comes with a black Alligator strap.
RICHARD MILLE - Tourbillon RM 026
Richard Mille’s new Tourbillon RM 026 is an amalgamation of enigmatic sensibility and high-tech horology creating an illusion of two serpents moving around the exposed Tourbillon. The snakes that beautify the RM 026 are made up of diamonds and 18K White Gold; also the hour indicators and the case are studded with diamonds. Of the two snakes, one is made up of rubies with a red coral tongue and the other one is emerald. If seen closely, the scales engraved in white gold are also visible. The baseplate of the watch uses Black Onyx- a gemstone believed to provide stability and protection from cynical thoughts. The watch has a 48-hour power reserve indicator that uses differential gearing system directly connected to the winding barrel. The RM 026 is water-resistant up to 50 meters and is made up of 21 jewels. Treat yourself with this watch if diamonds are your best friends and mystery is your middle name.
Price – USD 525,000.
Blacksand Geneve Continuity Dragon
This timepiece has been designed by Geneva-based artist and engraver
Kees Engelbarts. It is an entirely hand-made watch. The engraved dragon is delicately housed on the refined dial of the watch. This unique piece was especially designed for the 11th Charity Ball of the Swiss Red Cross to raise funds which will go to Cambodia, Bolivia, Ecuador, Paraguay, Sudan and
Ghana. It comes with a case of the satin white gold, adorned with 80 diamonds, operates on a manufactory self-winding caliber 1999. The mechanism provides a jumping hour function at the 12 o’clock position, minute disc at the 6 o’clock position, and the day & night indicator at 3 o'clock position.
Price- USD 529,215.
Richard Mille RM 057 Dragon - "Jackie Chan's Watch"
The Tourbillion Richard Mille RM 057 Dragon is a limited edition of 36 pieces in 18k white or red gold with a red gold dragon. The fabulous dial of the model is a real masterpiece. The dial is divided into two parts: the dragon depicted on it, as if trying to beat the hands at the top of the dial. The dragon is made by hand from a solid piece of gold. At the top of the dial, around the hands, are seen the gears, and the bridges, made of titanium, hold the tourbillion, located at the bottom, where is engraved a dragon's head. On a black background the golden dragon and hands look beautiful. The dial is protected by a double-sided anti-reflective sapphire crystal. The water resistance is 50 meters.
The RM057 Dragon Tourbillon watch is equipped with manufactory skeletonized mechanism RM057 with manual winding. The caliber with dimensions 32.80 mm x 29.00 mm and the thickness of 5.17 mm is equipped with a balanced wheel, a tourbillon, and a power reserve indicator. The mechanism is built on the 21 jewels, the frequency - 21,600 vibrations per hour, power reserve - 48 hours. Some of the unique features this wristwatch has to offer are: a movement base plate of pure, deep Black Onyx and a beautiful golden dragon engraving sporting colored scales that grips the tourbillon bridge in one of it’s claws. Next you have the round,engraved Jackie Chan signature, that is set in the black Onyx base plate and rotates once every 60 seconds in time with the tourbillon’s rotation, adding are fined visible touch.
Price- USD 590,000.
Jean Dunand Tourbillon
The Jean Dunand Tourbillon Orbital
Dragon has a dragon in all its might and uses the ancient art of cloisonné enameling. In this technique
tiny gold wires are fused on to the dial made of gold, this helps in housing
varying colored enamels. In the normal enameling process bold differing colors
cannot be used next to each because of the color blending during the firing
process but as visible in the Orbital
Dragon colors like black, sap green and red are used defining the scales of
the powerful Dragon. The watch has a flying tourbillon that orbits the dial
every hour and hence it uses a new winding system. The watch is wound from the
flip side and next to it is the moon-phase indicator, enameled in blue on an 18K
gold plate. There is a gas-gauge on the side of the watch that acts as a power
Price - Undisclosed.
Piaget Altiplano Dragon & Phoenix
According to Chinese mythology The Dragon and the Phoenix are symbolic of the emperor and empress and also signify honor and authority of the royal family. Both these creatures are regarded as a couple and individually the dragon symbolizes natural energy, power and good luck whereas the phoenix stands for classical virtues of mercy, integrity, etiquette, wisdom and sincerity. Piaget has made several intricate variations of their ultra-thin Dragon and the Phoenix Altiplano model (only 5.25 mm thick) as part of their Dragon & Phoenix Collection. This timepiece comes with 18K pink gold case set with 78 brilliant-cut diamonds
(approx. 0.7 cts). This version has a silver dial with a copper dragon design with casing dimension 20.5 mm and movement thickness of 2.1 mm. The
18 jewels, circular Côtes de Genève, circular-grained main plate and bridges, beveled bridges, blued screws on bridges with approximate 40-hour power reserve makes it s very special timepiece.
Constantin Year of the Snake
Vacheron Constantin marked the Chinese of year snake with the first model from their The Legend of the Chinese Zodiac series. Inspired by classic Chinese iconography, the leaf motif that appears on the gold-enameled dial is produced using the traditional Grand Feu technique found only in Geneva. The center of the watch has been embellished with a snake engraving that comes in three metal versions - crafted from bronze, platinum or gold and that is meticulously crafted - the scales alone take over 30 hours to complete. The watches are available in rose gold and platinum cases with each version limited to 12 pieces. The watch comes with a 40 mm case. The dials and therefore the sheer case-backs are coated with sapphire crystal and the Vacheron Constantin Métiers d’Art. The Legend of the Chinese Zodiac watches are powered by the in-house Vacheron Caliber 2460 GW self-winding automatic movements with 27 jewels and 40 hour power reserve.
Harry Winston Mokume Gane Dragon
Mokume Gane is a Japanese process of bonding multiple thin layers of precious metals such as gold and silver. Mokume means, "wood grained”and Gane means "metal”. A sharp, slightly curved graver is used to cut away layers in certain areas, exposing underlying layers resulting in the desired pattern. The piece is then sent through a rolling-press to flatten the surface. These unique timepieces are designed by Kees Engelbarts for Harry Winston. The watch have sapphire crystal case back that provide views to beautifully hand engraved movement work. The movements may be from the 50’s or 60’s, highly finished and decorated.
Meissen Italia, the Italian subsidiary of the age old porcelain factory founded in 1710, recently decided to join hands with luxury watch maker Laurent Ferrier. The amalgamation has brought in a synergy resulting in top quality artistry in watch making. Porcelain is most likely to be the last material one would find on a watch, yet it has found its way to the Galet secret. Featured with a hand painted porcelain dial, which involves intricate and microscopic detailing, Laurent Ferrier has outdone itself. The watch operates on what is known as a fan-shaped mechanism and on the push of a button located on the crown, the timepiece unleashes its poetic complication with such ease and grace. The artwork emerges revealing its porcelain based serenity at the touch of a button and more so intelligently as per the convenience of the wearer. The dragon motif enamel version will be unveiled at Baselworld 2013.
Inspired by the Chinese zodiac sign, the dragon represents a mystical legend known for strength and bravery, as it bears its five claws. This 42 mm robust watch is driven by its FBN 961.02 hand-wound movement, guaranteeing a power reserve of more than 80 hours. Comprising of over 23 rubies and 236 components, the enamel watch is cased on 18K gold. Water resistance is up to 30m.
Price - Undisclosed.
Ulysse Nardin Classico Serpent
Ulysse Nardin Classico Serpent uses the ancient art of enameling in their recent launch- The Classico Serpent. The serpent represents the 6th creature of the 12 year cycle in the Chinese calendar and is symbolic of intelligence. Ulysse Nardin impressively captures the serpent’s charisma and elegance and beautifully depicts it in enamel. The company shows true mastery in the craftsmanship of the long lost art by using the champlevé method with varying metallic oxides on the enameled dial. So much so, that the serpent seems to come to life. The case is made of 18K rose gold and has a self-winding movement with a COSC-certified chronometer. The watch also provides a 42-hour power reserve. This watch is a must have if collecting extraordinary piece of craft is your thing.
Price - Undisclosed.
Cornelius & Cie Dragon Gate Legend
The Cornelius & Cie Dragon Gate Legend is a picturesque watch that illustrates a legend from the Chinese mythology. It is the story about a carp that once saw the top of a mountain and wanted to reach it, he let nothing come in the way of his goal. When he reached the pinnacle he found the mythical Dragon Gate. He turned into a Dragon when he jumped over it. This legend is used as a fable to inspire people to be determined and decisive. The watch comes with two interesting movement features. One is that it uses a special shock absorbing system to protect the balance and the other one being a button a 2 o’clock which when pushed disconnects the crown from the winding mechanism and allowing the crown to be used to turn hands. The watch comprises of 17 ruby jewels and is water resistant to 30 meters. If you are someone who stops at nothing in life, this watch is your perfect partner!
Price - On Request.
Jaquet Droz Petit Heure Minute Relief Dragon
Jaquet Droz Petit Heure Minute Relief Dragon is another watch that honors the Chinese Year of the Dragon. The dial is made of mother-of-pearl and has a hand-engraved dragon in 22K gold which surfaces from the sea waves and appears to be holding a ruby in its hind claws and its tail is visible on the flip side of the watch. The dragon on the dial, unlike many other watches is a 3-dimensional figure. The case is made of rose gold and is 41 mm in diameter. The movement comprises of 28 ruby jewels and is water resistant up to 30 meters. The strap comes in black Alligator rolled-edge hand. This awe-inspiring watch is a limited edition and only 88 pieces are available.
Price - On Request.
De Bethune - DB25 Imperial Fountain watch
As a follow up to the sold out Ninth Mayan Underworld, De Bethune debuts the DB25 Imperial Fountain, a new special edition of sets of 12 timepieces. Inspired by the bronze Zodiac Animal Heads which adorned an ornate fountain in the famous Yuanming Yuan (Old Summer Palace) outside of Beijing, China, these beautiful watches feature elaborately engraved animal heads for the 12 Chinese zodiac symbols. Each of the 12 animals heads, engraved by master artist Michèle Rothen using the bas relief technique, is in the middle of the dial of its watch, backed by a Grand Feu enamel relief of the corresponding Zodiac symbol. The entire dial, including the serpent and Chinese numerals are hand engraved and has peripheral hands instead of central ones so as not to obscure the engraving of the serpent head. In order to have peripheral hands, De Bethune has developed a new movement i.e., Calibre DB 2145. The serpent head is placed on a grand feu enamel dial. The indicating hands are placed under the enamel dial and only the tips are visible allowing the gold engravings a lot of space. The diameter of this watch is 43mm and the entire dial except for the enameling is set in gold. The Yuan Ming Yuan – Water Clock replica is enraptured in a white gold case and comes with an Alligator leather strap.
Price – On Request
greetings i am looking to purchase a diamond studded mans watch honouring the tiger as that is my zodiach lucky sign and i cant locate any upscale watch showing a tiger .
by Desmond Geraghty
Hi how are you? I would like to know how much the Jaquet Droz petit minute releif dragon watch is in Australian Dollars.
Also is there any avalable to purchase and how much would it cost to sent to Australia.
I saw this watch in a magazine going to singapore on a stop over and liked it.
I look forward to your responce.
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