The Lunar New Year is a time for celebration and new beginnings, and watchmakers create beautiful timepieces to mark the occasion. Collectors covet these beautiful watches, which are renowned for their artistic interpretation of the Chinese Zodiac. Here, we round up the most beautiful watches for the year of the ox.
Every year, Chopard releases a spectacular Lunar New Year watch featuring Urushi lacquer, a difficult and rare Japanese art. This year’s L.U.C XP Urushi Year of the Ox features a picturesque pastoral scene. The year of the ox is meant to be beneficial to nature and to agriculture, which is reflected in the Urushi artwork where a golden ox pulls a cart in a bucolic setting. Master artist Minori Koizumi realized the scene in brilliant colors, as well as the Maki-e technique, which uses gold flakes to add brilliance.
To buy: $24,600, chopard.com
This absolutely glamorous watch from Harry Winston marries its expertise in horology and jewelry. A brawny ox is outlined in rose gold and has diamond details, including the horns. The ox is set on top of a red mother-of-pearl decorated with a traditional landscape. Of course, the 36mm Premier case is set with even more diamonds. This watch is limited to just eight pieces.
To buy: Price on request, harrywinston.com
Jaquet Droz’s Lunar New Year watches are so popular among its collectors that it couldn’t create just one. Instead, it features brilliant examples showcasing two very different métiers d’art in the Petite Heure Minute Buffalo collection. The first is miniature painting, and there are two different models that depict an ox in a tranquil mountain setting. The 35mm version is set with diamonds, while the 41mm version is more subtle with a red gold case. The scene is harmonious and peaceful, with muted colors that fade away, achievable only by the top artisans. The second set of watches features relief engraving, in which artisans carefully engrave a three-dimensional ox out of white or red gold and place it atop a black onyx dial. The contrast is sharp and highlights the beauty and details of the engraving. A golden plum tree with ruby flowers completes the dial. Each model is limited to eight pieces.
To buy: Price on request, jacquetdroz.com
Blancpain takes a different approach, focusing on the traditional Chinese calendar, rather than artistic interpretations of the ox, although there is a small ox motif at 12 o’clock and the oscillating weight is engraved with an ox. The Villeret timepiece is incredibly complicated, combining the Gregorian calendar and moon phases with the main elements of the traditional Chinese calendar, including double hours, days, months and leap months, zodiac signs, the five elements, and ten heavenly stems. This complex movement took five years to develop and is limited to 50 pieces in platinum.
To buy: Price on request, blancpain.com
If you’re looking for a watch you can wear every year, Bulgari’s beautiful red Diva’s Dream watch is the perfect choice. The unique skeletonized timepiece features red fan-shaped motifs, stars, and the outline of a peacock above the complicated movement, which has a tourbillon at 6 o’clock. It’s easy to get lost admiring the finishings on the movement. The watch isn’t just complicated, it’s glamorous, too. It comes on a matching red alligator bracelet, the crown is topped with a rubellite, and the case is decorated with 76 brilliant-cut diamonds.
To buy: $143,000, bulgari.com